Design industry moves beyond products

Summary:Firms like IDEO and Frog Design are expanding the design business -- to design actual businesses.

These days, even hospitals want to be more "user friendly."

Dropping design lingo isn't the only cue that businesses are taking to make products and services more appealing to a design savvy market. More organizations are adopting design as good business practice and looking to firms like IDEO and Frog to design systems and processes.

What's causing public and private organizations to embrace design? Because businesses are getting better at delivering great design, consumers increasingly expect to find great design everywhere, and thanks to companies like Apple, design is trendy.

As superstar designer Yves Behar tells Jessica A. Lessin of the Wall Street Journal, "Steve Jobs has definitely given us credibility in the business world...I see every segment of the economy being very concerned about design."

Lessin writes that design firms are developing solutions for private schools, health care, non-profit organizations, and medical companies. The growing emphasis on and understanding of design are helping design firms broaden their influence and increase their value beyond products.

Design Firms Go Beyond Gadgets as Portfolios Expand [WSJ]

Image: Manh Hung Tran/Flickr

This post was originally published on

Topics: Innovation


Contributing Editor Sun Joo Kim is an architect and creative consultant based in Boston. Her projects include design and master planning of museums, public institutions, hospitals, and university buildings across the U.S. She holds a degree from Carnegie Mellon University and is a member of the U.S. Green Building Council. Follow he... Full Bio

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