What we learned during Week 1 of DesignThinkers 2020 Virtual
With engaging presentations and sessions from graphic designers from all over the world, the first week stretched our understanding and gave us new ways to think about design.


Three major themes emerged during this week's talks: the importance of showing up for yourself; how we're in a critical period for design; and why diversity and representation matters.


Here are some of the insightful takeaways from DesignThinkers Speakers in Week 1.


On showing up for yourself


“You can look at skills like apps that are running on your phone. Is your internal operating system updated? If not, apps won’t run at all or run smoothly.”

Elle Barriga, Creative Director, Innovation Consultant & Transformation Coach


“You have to show up for the job you want, not the job you were hired to do. If you do more than what you are paid to do, eventually you are going to get paid more than what you do.”

Chris Do, CEO & Chief Strategist, Blind / Founder of The Futur


“Embrace your rejections. They don't define you. You define them.”

Pavi Logeswaran, UI/UX Product Designer at Shopify


On design's critical moment


“Empathy is the key to a positive future. Designers have the methodology to understand someone else’s problem. The only way out of here is empathy.”

Bruce Mau, CEO & Co-Founder at Massive Change Network


“This year has been a golden opportunity for design to prove its value as a tool for tackling the complex challenges of our world as opposed to something that’s focused on surface appearance over substance.”

Alice Rawsthorn, Award-winning Design Critic and Author


On creating diverse, representative teams and work


“Design is not what we make. Design is what we make possible for others.”

Brian Collins, Chief Creative Officer, COLLINS


“Have people in the room from all walks of life when decisions are made.”

Dantley Davis, Chief Design Officer at Twitter


“We talk a lot about diverse hiring practices, but I don’t know if there are enough environments where people from different backgrounds can thrive— where people who have a different pedigree, a different educational background can excel.”

Berkeley Poole, Creative Director at Whitman Emorson