One of my favorite designers, John Maeda, believes that the most successful tech companies of the future will really be design companies.
When John’s somewhat bold prediction is put in the context of this quote from Steve Jobs, “Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works” – it’s easy to see that John is right.
So if the future successful tech companies will really be design companies, what does that mean for all the “non design companies” of today (read: most tech companies and especially most IT tech companies)? This is an opportunity for all tech companies to understand the real value of design. I believe that change has to start at the top, so for Silicon Valley, it means business leaders have to come to grips with this transformation. Not just hiring more UX people, or opening a “design center,” but embracing design as a way to lead your entire company.
It should come as no surprise that I place such high importance on the Red Dot awards. They are a validation of amazing design quality from beyond the technology industry. Our products in the Collaboration portfolio have won six Red Dot awards in the last 18 months – that’s as many as Cisco has won in all its 30 years.
Last week, I found out we won two more. Our newest video endpoint and the flagship of the Collaboration portfolio – the IX5000 – just won a “Red Dot Best of the Best” 2015 award, the highest distinction in Red Dot’s product design category. In 2015, only 1.6% of the nearly 5,000 submissions received this top prize.