I wanted to post this video I just watched, together with a few notes and standout points I took from it. It's an inspiring talk with Joe Gebbia, a founder or Airbnb. He describes the value of having designers heavily involved in the decision making process of a business.
How design thinking transformed Airbnb from failing startup to billion-dollar business
The really key quote from him comes only 1:30m in:
Airbnb is really just an extension of what we learnt at industrial design and graphic design. This idea you can observe a problem and with design thinking ... can see 2 dots that don’t make any sense - but in your head you can connect them in a new and different way.
The talk goes into several examples of how design thinking defined the business and made it successful.
Other key points he makes are
- Do things that don’t scale
the seemingly non-scalable idea of having professional photographs taken of the rooms in New York led to a 100% revenue increase in 1 week.
- Take a risk / be a pirate
changing star ratings to hearts generated a 30% increase in click through numbers
- Creating the right culture
The relationship between engineers, designers and decision makers must be symbiotic and have a culture of co-collaboration
- Don’t compromise - go for both
Airbnb wanted big images and fast page loading times. They invented Infinite scrolling as a design & engineering solution to the problem
- Think Bigger