Matt and Gail Taylor
Matt & Gail Taylor & Design Thinking
Catherine was first introduced to design thinking through Matt and Gail Taylor and later by Alex Klat-Smith when working on two important projects – Transform Australia and the Global Brain Exchange. Each time, Catherine witnessed esteemed subject matter experts bump heads with other subject matter experts, not due to personality differences but rather, due to siloed thinking rather than viewing the problem or opportunity as a whole system.
It occurred to Catherine that ever since mankind could monetise an idea or control a community, siloed thinking has served to preserve survival of the smartest, rewarding behaviours that protect and grow empires and kingdoms without not much more than a cleverly disguised token of a thought for our planet or people. Being directive and responding to commands is either empowerment or slavery depending on who is giving it out. There are too many misguided leaders, who make decisions and give directives without being in their zone of comprehensively considerate. Commercially controlling perhaps,smart, of course, but certainly not looking out their siloed window to create beauty and abundance beyond their kingdom. We have to address the role of the leaders and societal expectations around them. Board’s can change charters and amend constitutions and shareholder value can drive prosperity through design thinking and being comprehensively considerate.
Buckminster Fuller stated that work is a form of slavery, and looking at the driving force of the western world compelled to work work work, grow, grow, grow this statement rings true. Societal structures have been built from the bottom up this way and perpetuated siloed structures, behaviours and mindset that gives rise to behaviours such as competition, covert strategies, jealousy and resentment. It is a cut throat world of have and have nots. Education is an intervention but that can also perpetuate siloed mentality and elitism forgoing the common ground we all stand and are reliant upon, our planet earth.
What is missing in many of our endeavours is robust design thinking that takes into account diverse perspectives to iterate and synthesise to group genius. Rather than look up to leaders we need to embrace designers – whole systems designers to get to a comprehensive understanding of opportunity, direction and purpose.
Not being an expert on design thinking but rather, one of its greatest fans, Catherine encourages the reader to look up design thinking in wikipedia but please know, it is what drives me to participate in great change and contribute positively to society, and compels me to rise from the invisible role of strategist to the empowered role of the design thinker. With this as inspiration and combine it with the Generalised Principles, people, companies, governments and communities can activate on a whole new level and operate at a higher frequency.
It doesn’t take much, and it doesn’t have to be an academic pursuit, it just takes awareness to open up and challenge our own fixed viewpoints and acknowledge there is more to learn and consider in our roles, responsibilities, choices and consequences.