5 Must-See Ted Talks on Design for Business Leaders

Whether you’re leading your organization’s marketing department, the head of IT or making leadership decisions in another role within your enterprise, it pays to look at the challenges you face on a daily basis through the lens of a designer—particularly when you consider the surge in technological tools being integrated into your operations year after year. Websites, applications and portals can be your greatest assets for growing your business, but if they are deployed without considering the impact of design on user experience, they can become your biggest liabilities.

Here is a roundup of some recent TED talks to help you understand the significance that design can have for your business.

How Airbnb Designs for Trust

Conducting business online can be challenging because the personal, face-to-face element with which most are accustomed is missing. Instilling trust was the greatest challenge for Airbnb co-founder Joe Gebbia—particularly due to the nature of his business. He credits great design work as the reason why millions of Airbnb users have given their trust to a company that connects strangers in one of the most intimate settings. Designing to increase a user’s trust in your brand can help break down digital barriers to your business’ success. Watch the full video.

The Art of First Impressions—in Design and Life

When someone goes to your website, your landing page has only fractions of a second to grab their attention. Fair or not, first impressions are difficult to shake and can fundamentally alter a user’s impression of your business. Book designer Chip Kidd’s Ted talk focuses on techniques that you can apply to captivate your audience. Watch the full video.

The First Secret of Design is…Noticing

Just because you’re getting by on the status quo doesn’t mean there isn’t room for improvement. Tony Fadell, the creator of the iPod, explains techniques that you can use to shake off your unconscious biases and look for design changes you can make, even when it seems that you don’t need it, to improve user experience. Watch the full video.

The Agony of Trying to Unsubscribe

It isn’t a true test of character to judge a business on how they treat their customers. Instead, look at how they treat those that wish to discontinue a professional relationship. Even though you might lose a customer, designing in a way that makes it easy for someone to unsubscribe from your services can help you improve your overall brand image and set up your business for long-term success. Comedian James Veitch talks about his personal experience trying to shake a persistent marketer from his local supermarket in this TED talk. Watch the full video.

Got a Wicked Problem? First Tell Me How You Make Toast

When a system is well-tailored to optimize user experience, you might not notice the design elements at all. A system with great UX makes usability seem, like breathing, an involuntary action. But according to this TED talk’s speaker, Tom Wujec, something that seems as simple as making toast can become convoluted when you ask someone to actually break down how to do it step-by-step. This TED talk will help you understand the subtle challenges you may face when trying to make a challenging process simple through design principles. Watch the full video.

We invite you to learn more about the ways that user experience design can become an integral component of your organization’s success.