Caption: Cyclamens from Columbia Flower Market: the same flower but thousands of nuances and sorts. A Good Design Manager should deeply study and analyze all his markets.
In an art collection the viewers reactions, combined with the gallery’s specific space bring special concerns to the pieces of art, which slightly mutate from one exhibition to the other. Lights, spaces, location, noise, interaction; all these aspects give a different nuance to the piece of art. Similarly, a design idea can change and being differently accepted by consumers in different environments. Nietzsche in philosophy and Stanislavskij in theatre had already underlined the importance of understanding clients and their problems by experiencing them. As a result, approaching a market implicates a valid methodology and active research on customers and habits.
A relevant source for this information is the UK Department for International Trade, a useful tool for the future of a potential company to promote. Their team can provide reports and researches about a specific market or country and they help companies to identify the good partners and establishing relations with foreign countries. The DIT’s principal aim is to promote the UK export and leading it to a number one position all over the world. They especially focalize in culture, as a way of building solid relationships. When approaching a new market it is crucial not only to a have a general knowledge about it, but also to deep understand its history, tradition, religion, education and language (among the rest). As the current focus in UK market is Luxury, the London HQ has 7 sector teams, including Fashion, Business and Creative, that is why it is very interesting and attractive for a Fashion Designer who is studying design management.
Studies suggest that some of the most valuable research methods are ethnography and anthropology, both approaches produce detailed in-depth observation by analyzing people in their natural environment and finding the design implications.
Consequently a good design manager should act like Georges Perec discovering what is going on behind a Parisian façade. He wrote a masterpiece simply questioning: if given a wall, what happens behind? Similarly a professional who works with different and foreign markets should be keen on discovering what is below the iceberg peak, with a deep investigation on what characterize a specific country.
Department for International Trade(2016) Available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/department-for-international-trade
Perec, G(1978) La vie mode d’emploi. Paris: Hacette Littératures.