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MAU: Documenting the power of design thinking

We can all be champions of positive change.

I am so proud. My dear friend, Freeman Chief Design Officer Bruce Mau, is the subject of the eponymous documentary currently being screened at SXSW. He has led an amazing life and inspired so many people, from such different walks of life, to embrace a design-thinking approach and effect  massive change. That’s how we met. 

It doesn’t seem so long ago that Bruce began working with Freeman, helping us to articulate and embrace a design-thinking methodology that would inspire us to rethink and improve everything we do. We became a better organization, delivering better work for our clients. I dug around and found the first blog I wrote about Bruce in 2015, in which I officially announced that he was joining us as Designer-in-Residence: 

“His approach to design thinking aligns directly with our Freeman values, and he is inspired, as we are, about the amazing opportunity to evolve the live event experience. Over the past year, he’s worked alongside our team to help Freeman focus on designing fresh, effective outcomes for all aspects of our business.”

In the years that followed, Bruce became our Chief Design Officer and helped guide the dramatic realignment of our organization. Then, almost one year ago to the date our industry, and much of the world, began to contract in response to pandemic shut-downs. Today, as we look forward to the happier but equally complex challenges of ramping back up, I believe more than ever in our mandate to design a better world.

I am delighted to congratulate Bruce on this honor. I consider it a victory for design thinkers everywhere. Hopefully, our ranks will swell as more people are inspired by this documentary to embrace life-centered design. As Bruce says in his book, “MAU MC24,” “The only way to effect real change is to show people a future more exciting than their past, and inspire them to work together on the journey.”

We are seeing that future today. The journey is underway.

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