Emotional Connections Through Design

In 805conversations by Mark Sylvester

“How do we create meaning and value?”

Ravi Sawhney, the founder, and CEO of RKS Design has been contemplating the role of design in our lives for years. This episode with Mark and Patrick gets to some of the high points of his thinking in this area. Note, this is the second pure Design episode we tackled. Check out Dane Howard if you’re interested in more on this topic. This wide-ranging conversation covered a lot of ground including:
  • How he got started with Industrial Design – Note: it was a circuitous path, involving his mentor, the Dean at Cal State Northridge
  • His experience with Shop Classes in High School – Note: we don’t have shop classes anymore in our educational system
  • His book, Predictable Magic, and its impact on advanced design thinking.
  • Working at the Xerox think-tank early in his career
  • When he first started thinking about interaction design
  • Psycho-Aesthetics – time for buzzword bingo time on this one, look it up
  • “Design is a tool to take you on a journey
  • We loved his explanation of Happy Storytellers
  • Nice long sidebar about Ravi and Guitars and how his firm reinvented the Electric Guitar – Harvard Business Review did a Case Study of how they did the project
  • When we asked what Ravi’s next dragon is, he told us about how he challenges the Company to go out and find a big, hairy problem that’s facing the nation and submit it for one of the pro-bono efforts the Company takes on. Hear how they intend to solve the Student Loan problem. It’s a compelling idea.
It’s not how you feel about the desing, it’s how itmakes you feel about yourself.”