Evolving Your Identity

March 27, 2013

Identity is an interesting thing. On the one hand we are responsible for our own identity and can be intentional about it. On the other hand it is shaped by the perceptions of others. For individuals or corporations, the challenge of re-designing identity is one of evolution rather than revolution.

IDEO just completed 24 hours of prototyping our identity in public from Tokyo to San Francisco. Basically our designers took Paul Rand's 1991 IDEO logo, which was updated by Michael Bierut in 1997, and explored the future of brand identity during a playful, provocative, global all-nighter. You can see the six themes designers exploredhere, and follow the story in Core77's exclusive digital series here.

One thing we learned about what's next for designing identity—not just for us, but for many businesses in the 21st century—is that there is a design opportunity in being global and genuinely sensitive to the cultural nuances of location and people. This understanding can't authentically come from a top-down approach. We are living in an unprecedented time of connectivity, and therefore an unprecedented era of human relationships. Tapping into the cultural nuances of connected places or connected people is a powerful source of creativity. In the 21st century, our networks are our identity.

How might you or your company embrace the richness of your networks to drive creative change?

(Posted also on my LinkedIn Thought Leader blog)