10 things that make me smile and 10 things that make me frustrated

10 things that make me smile:

  1. When there is a radio with an iPod docking station in a hotel room, so that I can listen to my own music.
  2. When I use the new Gillette Fusion with battery power.
  3. When my Roomba plays a happy tune after it accomplishes its task.
  4. When I use my MacBook Pro.
  5. When I eat well-presented Japanese food.
  6. When I touch the cover of my small Bible that is made with high quality Italian leather.
  7. When I jot down some thoughts and ideas on my small Moleskine notebook.
  8. When I listen to my favorite podcast using my iPod.
  9. When I use my navigation system from Garmin.
  10. When I was eating Bento on Shinkansen in Japan.

10 things that make me frustrated:

  1. When Home Depot tells me that their delivery truck will be at our home between 8AM and 5PM.
  2. When I try to clean up my razor blade after shaving with running water.
  3. When my laptop and a projector cannot synchronize without any reason.
  4. When I see an ugly 20% discount sticker on a beautifully designed book cover.
  5. When I need to use paper towel in the men’s room in my building, as I must walk back toward the inside, not toward the exit.
  6. When I was told that they cannot do it because of a rule, even though they agree that it may be a totally unnecessary rule.
  7. When I am put on hold on the phone by a customer service representative immediately after I start explaining what went wrong with their service.
  8. When a hotel front desk person ignores me who is right in front of her in order to talk to a customer who is NOT there.
  9. When I cannot find a working marker in my classroom.
  10. When the printer is jammed but I cannot find what’s wrong with it.

These are experiences that are result of good and careful design or no design. I had much easier time to come up with 10 things that make frustrated (and I could have made the list much longer) than 10 things that make smile. The world will be a much better place to live, if organizations begin designing and stop accepting mediocrity that is a direct result of having no design attitude. So, design no longer is simply a luxurious afterthought for a small number of premium companies, but should be the basic fundamental way of thinking that is permeated in all organizations.

Professor | Writer | Teacher Digital Innovation, Design, Organizational Genetics Case Western Reserve University

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