This is From Ideas to Life, brought to you by the Digitalist Group. We bring conversations with movers and shakers in the design and technology scene. From design sprints to IoT, from smart citizens to entrepreneurship — we bring ideas to life by co-creating with some of the most innovative companies in the world.
In this episode of The Ideas To life podcast, Esa Nettamo from Digitalist talks with Maria Uhari Pakkalin, head of customer experience design, Fortum. Certified Yoga instructor. A very interesting backstory on how this podcast came to be, it seemed near impossible to get both Esa’s and Maria’s schedules to align given their very packed days. However, by pure coincidence, on a plane Finnair plane trip they were seated next to each other and had the time to talk and plan this podcast.
Maria’s background in design started in the year 2000, where she was supposed to become a French translator, but luckily found an alternative with communication studies. As she was writing her Thesis she discovered the magic of usability and ultimately shifted her focus towards that. It rapidly became her passion and drive and been in the industry ever since.
Fortum is a leading clean energy company that develops and provides solutions for customers in electricity, heating, cooling, and solutions to improve resource efficiency. They also provide services for power generation industries so that customers and people all around can be elevated to smarted energy consumption usage. They drive energy for a cleaner world. Maria has a team now in place in Helsinki, Stockholm, Oslo, and Salsburg.
To find out how Fortum engages with their design, R&D, and their overall customer experience journey, listen to the podcast here.
In this episode of the Ideas to Life podcast, Esa Nettamo from Digitalist talks with Rashmi Kasat-Majakorppi, the vice president and head of digital business development, and founder of the digital garage at Metso, machinery industry company.
The digital garage was formed with the intention to take ideas in the organisation forward. Very often when people are going forward with their day-to-day grind, they don’t have the time to take certain critical ideas forward into implementation. Ideas are generally checked whether they are viable, and oftentimes needs validation from key focus groups.
Rashmi’s biggest lessons she’s learnt over the years is to keep a keen ear to your customer; what they are saying? What are their demands? Demands on their environment surrounding them? Additionally, internally, to have a high performing culture. The internal setup has to perform to the expected standards of customer experiences to even begin thinking about succeeding.
From the digital garage, the overall number of ideas is generally not a problem, it is seen very much as an opportunity to have hundreds. However, Metso down selects, on an annual basis, to 10 ideas to take forward. The decisions are made based on quality and not quantity, as they want to be the pioneers of bringing added value.
This time Esa Nettamo from Digitalist has invited Antti Kujala to join him in the Ideas to Life Podcast studio. Antti Kujala has an interesting role as the Director of Design at Amer Sports while at the same time Heading the Design at Suunto, one of the sub-brands of Amer Sports. In the podcast he talks about how it is to drive design and digital business in a group where you are working with many different independent brands. The challenge is to be able to drive the physical goods brands outside their comfort zone and find scalable digital assets that can drive them revenue.
One topic that Antti Kujala is especially stressing is that companies should better understand the value of including design in their top management. By having design as a part of the top management companies are able to incorporate design thinking in their strategy and overall ways of working.
Antti Kujala is also talking about experimenting and how important he sees that as a tool for design. However, he thinks that experimenting is still somewhat difficult for many companies but he encourages to give it a chance since today you need to change constantly and experimenting is a good tool to gain understanding in how you should change.
In this episode of the Ideas to Life podcast Esa Nettamo from Digitalist talks with Timo Tiainen, Director of Concepts and Design at Kone about the pros and cons of an in-house design team compared to using external design consultancy, as well as how to find the optimal mix of these two. Timo Tiainen also talks a bit about his background and explains how a product company like Kone utilize design in order to make their quite traditional products future proof.
Timo Tiainen has been building the Kone design team up from scratch and seen how the company has changed their way of working into a more design led approach. Today the company’s vision is to deliver the best people flow experience and they have been changing the focus from just delivering elevators and escalators, to creating solutions that are improving the way of interacting with technology and enabling people to move about. The interesting challenge is to design the products in way that will last through their entire lifecycle that usually is quite long.
How are young minds thinking design, today? How does design align to business strategy? Digitalist interviews Gert Hans Berghuis, lecturer at Design Strategy in Delft University, Netherlands, and CEO of supercool design studio Fabrique.