Here are some ideas for boosting your profitability:

  1. Place more women on your board of directors. Surveys show that companies with 20% or more women directors are more profitable. (Source: Boston Club Research and 2020 campaign)
  2. Place more people of color on your board of directors. See above – it’s true – a diverse board leads to more successful companies, perhaps because of less cronyism – fewer “yes men” and more open discussions with multiple viewpoints makes for better decision making on the board level. (Source: Forbes Magazine)
  3. We also know that companies that are associated with community service have more loyal customers. (Source: Harvard Business School Study)
  4. But did you know that “businesses that incorporate design know that good design boosts the bottom line” (Source: Design Museum Foundation). Design can help businesses communicate to their customers that they have new products and services that deserve attention, and to their employees that their contributions are valued. Venture capital firms indicate that design is a key factor in improving their investment success rate from 10% to 80%. (Source, Design Museum Foundation)

Apple is an example of a company who has used design as a business quality differentiator. Other companies make similar products, but Apple – or should we say Steve Jobs – made design a priority. Even in the post Steve Jobs era, Apple continues to emphasize good design. They recently hired the world-renowned architect, Foster and Partners (designer of Boston’s MFA glass box addition) to redesign their stores. Are the stores so radically better? Maybe not, but the Apple customers expect the best, and continuing to emphasize design communicates the “best” attitude of the company.

What if a small company wants to play in the same park with its big competitors? Design can make a difference without spending “Apple” money. At Leslie Saul & Associates, we believe that good design can work to “make the world a better place for people who work, play, age, live, and learn.” Our mission is to use our design tools to make things better for people in the places they use every day, once a week, once a month, or once a year. Good design can make life better, easier, happier. Try it, and you may find that design can truly improve your bottom line – socially, environmentally, economically. Twenty years ago, Tom Peters, author of “In Search of Excellence” said that every CEO should have design consultants on their speed dial list. Put LS&A on your company’s speed dial list. We’d love to help!

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