Friday, January 4, 2008

From Debbie Millman

I am going over my notes from the AIGA Design Conference this year and ran into a few resources recommended by Debbie Millman during our round-table discussion.

First, we can see what we don't understand. This is true of anything—of scripture, a new idea etc. We don't understand it until someone has explained it. In the movie What the Bleep Do We Know? a tribal leader sees an irregularity on the ocean but doesn't understand what it is. He stares at it for days until finally he can see the ship that is causing the ripples in the water. As soon as he describes it to the rest of his people, they can all see the ship.

This is the same for "new" design. As designers we are responsible to teach the client how to see. (Anyone remember this from Adrian? His goal was to teach us how to see.) This means we have to change the way our clients think, and in order to do that, we have to understand how they think. What are their ideas, beliefs, or feelings about a certain topic? Brand leaders in today's world know that it's about how brand is going to feel, not about the product itself.

Unfortunately designers don't learn enough about selling, or being able to speak well while they are in college. There simply isn't enough time. So, here is a recommended reading list from Debbie Millman:

Pattern Recognition by William Bibson
Selling the Invisible by Harry Beckwith
Ziglar on Selling
by Zig Ziglar
Swim with the Sharks without being Eaten Alive by harvey B. Mackay
How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie

If you want to know more about Debbie Millman's research visit her BLOG. You may have to do some searching.

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