Design Voices
Head of Design Strategy, New Frontiers at Dropbox

Devin Mancuso

Devin is the Head of Design Strategy, New Frontiers at Dropbox. He spends his days thinking about tools for thought and the future of work

Value Input From All Team Members, not Just Results

When working on ambitious, multi-year design strategy projects, it's important to consider the decision-makers' experience who are engaging in your process. In my experience, when people reflect on their careers, they are much more likely to remember how they felt being part of a specific project or team than the nuances of the actual end-deliverables.

Never forget that after you give your final presentation, your perfectly formatted slide deck will be cut up and copy-pasted into 100s of other decks and documents; it will take on a life of its own. Three years on, key decision-makers may not even remember your original strategy presentation. Still, they will remember how they felt being a part of that process, whether they felt like they had input, whether they felt represented in the ideas outlined, whether the right trade-offs were discussed, etc.

Ultimately it will be those people who carry the strategy forward long after you have finished the project. Their understanding of the vision and their buy-in is critical, maybe more so than any glossy visual mocks or the perfect product narrative.

The best strategies are those created with significant input from decision-makers along the way, such that they feel a sense of ownership and buy-in before the final presentation has even begun.

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