I’m a pretty straight up-and-down person – what you might call a ‘conservative type’ or even a ‘square’. I’m happy to wear those labels, although I don’t really identify with them or the socio-political baggage that they come with. It’s not like I’m actively standing in the way of change or progress. It’s more that I have a penchant for grey cashmere cardigans and comfortable, high-quality loafers. People can read whatever they want into that.
One thing I have co-opted into my identity, though, is the idea that I don’t place high value on design, and lately I’ve been starting to deconstruct this notion. You see, I’ve never really looked into what design is actually about, and simply associated it with superficial trappings like fast fashion, look-at-me flourishes and status symbols that loudly announce information about one’s bank balance. None of that’s for me, so I figured that design wasn’t either.
What I’ve been learning recently is that there’s so much more to design than that type of thing. It’s actually about solving problems in a way that weaves together functional needs into an aesthetically unified outcome. Design experts might differ on the finer points of that definition, but that’s essentially it, as far as I’m coming to understand.
It’s giving me a whole new perspective on my business operations. In particular, I’m thinking about office interior design. Melbourne has some beautiful examples of this, and some not so beautiful ones as well, and I’m realising that my company’s head office space lies somewhere between the two. Everything works satisfactorily and is perfectly presentable, but it’s not what I’d describe as a truly excellent workspace.
I’m seeing a window of opportunity here to create an office environment in which my business and the people in it can thrive at a new level. There’s plenty of room for creativity here in Melbourne, office fitouts not excepted, and I feel I have a responsibility to apply my newfound awareness of design to enhancing the space.
Perhaps it’s time for mister straight up-and-down, conservative square to loosen his tie a little, and do something really cutting edge.