Nov 19, 2018
The Unconventional Genius podcast welcomes guest Inbal Etgar, Creative Director at frog Design, to discuss the importance of design. Inbal leads the product development team of mechanical engineers and industrial designers at frog, which has been in business for over 50 years. During our conversation, Inbal talks about her role at frog, how they help companies succeed and what she sees for the future of design.
frog Design has played an instrumental role in many well-known companies and products. They have worked with companies like GE, Google, and Heatworks. Most notably, frog helped strategize and create Apple’s design language called Snow White for their line of computers. Hear Inbal recount the opportunities she has had to leverage the importance of design with these major companies.
The benefit of design for Heatworks
During our conversation, Inbal details the work that she and her team has done for Heatworks. Heatworks is also a client that I have worked with and I know firsthand that they are an innovative company with beautiful design. frog helped Heatworks design one of the most unique countertop dishwashers on the market today.
The Model 3 by Heatworks is a countertop dishwasher that uses a completely new way to heat water. By developing this type of technology, Heatworks was able to use their water-heating method in different applications, including the dishwasher. During our interview, Inbal shares her experience working with Heatworks to not only help with product design, but also with their overall branding.
Inbal Etgar’s journey into industrial design
Inbal shares with me her journey to becoming the creative director at frog. Starting out as a painter and sculptor, she had a passion to shape her environment. A family friend, who was an industrial engineer, invited her to help build some models which opened her eyes to the professional opportunities that industrial design held.
Inbal says that industrial design is the intersection of engineering and plastic arts. She appreciates the constraints of the discipline and the opportunity to redefine visual norms.
Inbal has traveled through Europe and China and experienced the different aspects of industrial design. She landed in the United States just before the release of the first iPhone and Fitbit. Inbal has achieved the rare privilege of experiencing the confluence of passion and skill.
The acceleration of progress and how it is impacting design.
Is design experiencing benefit from the acceleration of progress? Inbal says design is a key factor in progress and innovation but is only successful when a company has a solid foundation. She suggests that companies can over-index on design and fail to actually solve a problem for businesses and consumers.
Inbal says, “Design starts in the boardroom.” You can have a really beautiful design but if you don’t have clarity about how you are going to ensure longevity, you will struggle to deliver over time. Hear more insight from Inbal’s unique experience and perspective during this episode of Unconventional Genius.
The importance of design and its connection to failure
“Success lives where tolerance for failure exists.” Inbal stresses the importance of being willing to fail. Data and research help you better understand how to solve problems, but sometimes you have to follow intuition. Inbal cites Steve Jobs as a great example of someone who took risks and failed but who bounced back to experience unprecedented success.
During this interview, Inbal shares her vision for the future of design. She believes that the importance of design is understood better than ever before. She believes that companies gain an advantage in creating a product and solving a problem by having a designer at the table. Listen to this episode of the Unconventional Podcast to hear more from Inbal Etgar.
If you are with a consumer technology company planning to launch a new product at CES or are even looking ahead to CES 2019, the Max Borges Agency can help you succeed. To learn more, check out: www.maxborgesagency.com.
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