What is Design ? – a Knowledge Management point of view

Or Why Managers are from Mars and Designers are from Venus..

If Design can be described as a combination of three key factors (as outlined in the last post) then mapping them onto 3 axis space helps to explain the ‘cultural miss’ that often occurs between designers and engineers/business managers.

We all start solving problems in the lower left corner using our natural skill and learnt methods. As our skills increase our ability to translate and apply experiential or tacit knowledge starts to demonstrate our expertise in a particular field.

Some industries value highly repeatable, predictable, derivable answers – expected quality (think air traffic controllers).

Other industries value one off, unique and interpretive solutions – exciting quality (think artisans).

Most industries value a combination of both approaches – at the right time – context dependant. Designers and business people regularly seem to be talking a different language, and this diagram helps to explain their very different world view points.

industries within3d space mk2.jpg

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