Michael Bierut + Jessica Helfand | Audio

S1E1: John Bielenberg

John Bielenberg is a designer, entrepreneur and imaginative advocate for a better world. He is the founder of Project M and CCA Secret Project, and co-founder of Future and Common. He is known for his work in innovation regarding the practice and understanding of design and leadership in the “design for good” movement.

“Our brains are super efficient at following existing pathways,” he says on The Design of Business | The Business of Design. This efficiency is wonderful in many situations, but it makes it hard to generate new ideas.

While working for Deutsche Bank, Bielenberg says: We got ads from the Wall Street Journal from all the big investment banks and took the logos and switched them around. Nobody could tell whose ad was whose.…I tried to convince them to just do a giant Deutsche Bank logo, five by five inches, and nothing else, and said that would have a bigger impact subliminally.

So how hard is it to think wrong? “Try to talk wrong. it’s almost impossible to put words together in a nonsensical sequence,” Bielenberg says.

Michael Bierut gives it a try.

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The Design of Business | The Business of Design is recorded at the Yale School of Management.

A big thanks to our launch sponsor, IBM.

Posted in: Business, Design of Business | Business of Design, Social Good

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