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Issue #23

Hi there,

As we move to the end of the third quarter of what has been a whirlwind year for us, we’re deep into the post-summer rush of projects, with plenty of high-impact work on the horizon.

Juggling multiple projects as a lean team can have its challenges, and oftentimes, work on the business takes a backseat as work in the business takes priority. However, I recently finished reading The Opposable Mind by Roger Martin, and he makes a compelling case for how great leaders adopt a paradoxical approach to problem-solving.

Instead of focusing exclusively on one or the other, I’ve found it much more effective to allow both aspects to inform each other. So, although I may not be allocating as much time to strategy and growth as I would like, whilst working on individual projects, I’m unlocking new ideas and insights that will prove to be extremely valuable to tap into when strategy, growth, and operational decisions need to be made effectively.

Put another way, let’s say we’re managing a high-impact public sector platform. The development team wants to spend a lot of time on testing to ensure the application is bug-free, while the country office stakeholders are pushing for a quicker launch due to pressing socio-economic issues.

A traditional approach (let’s call it the “either-or thinker”) would be tempted to choose either:

  • Allow the development team to spend the desired time on extensive testing, which would delay the launch and potentially risk future funding allocation, etc.
  • Rush the launch as per the country office push, potentially leading to a subpar, bug-riddled application that could harm the organization's reputation.

An integrative thinking approach would instead create a solution that incorporates the strengths of both. An example of this would be to divide the application's features into core and non-core. The core features, which are vital for user interaction, will undergo extensive testing as per the development team's suggestion. Meanwhile, the non-core features will be developed and launched later as updates, allowing the country office stakeholders to initiate the launch in line with pressing demands.

So whilst the leadership balancing act can oftentimes be challenging to perform, embrace a more opposable mind and welcome the opportunity to see your business differently.

Kieran Glover – Managing Director


Thoughts.

— On AI for design.

AI has emerged as a powerful ally in the world of web design, complementing human creativity — not replacing it.

Today’s AI solutions are able to generate fresh ideas and tailor designs to individual users, enhancing both efficiency and personalization. They can also automate repetitive tasks, freeing up designers to concentrate on more innovative work and revolutionizing the design process.

As the field of AI evolves, its impact on web design continues to grow, ushering in a new era of creativity and user-friendliness. By automating tasks like wireframing, creating mockups, and prototyping, AI tools accelerate the overall design process, resulting in more efficient workflows. Additionally, AI’s data analysis capabilities can help designers identify patterns, generating new design concepts to reach specific goals.

The potential benefits of integrating AI into the design process are vast. Designers become more productive and efficient, allowing them to focus on honing their creative skills. At the same time, AI-powered personalized designs are more likely to resonate with users and lead to increased engagement and satisfaction.

As AI tools mature, they offer the promise of optimizing design for performance and accessibility and creating seamless user experiences. Embracing AI in design is not just an option but a strategic imperative for designers seeking to push the boundaries of creativity and deliver exceptional results.

Read more: The AI Tooling Landscape: Transforming Web Design.


News.

  • UNDP. We’re proud to share that our Head of Design, Angelique Delamere, has joined the ranks of the Mäd UNDP team as a product designer to work on a range of high-impact digital products.


Spotlight.

  • DFDL. After the success of our collaboration on DFDL’s new website design and development project, Mäd will have the pleasure of continuing to work with DFDL on crafting and implementing a more effective and scalable brand presence across the region.

    In our previous project, we leveraged our expertise in creating intuitive user experiences and aligning digital strategies with business objectives to transform DFDL's website into a platform that bridges the gap between the firm and its clients. Explore our journey of optimizing DFDL's brand positioning, streamlining knowledge sharing, and delivering exceptional client experiences in our case study on Unleashing Digital Potential in the Legal World.

Insights.

  • AI: The Next Frontier for Organizations. Today's companies are at the forefront of a digital revolution, where new technology is transforming industries and driving innovation. AI-based solutions are driving a paradigm shift in how businesses operate and succeed, and harnessing the full potential of AI becomes paramount for organizational success.
  • Agile vs. Waterfall: Adaptive Project Management. Great project management is critical for organizations striving to run successful projects, build great products, and deliver on-demand services. Two common project management methodologies are Agile and Waterfall. While we practice Agile at Mäd, the best approach for your organization will depend on the specific needs and goals of your project.
  • Navigating the Future of AI Regulation: A Global Imperative. In the era of rapidly advancing technology, AI has emerged as a powerful force that is reshaping industries and societies alike. Recognizing the immense impact of AI, effective regulation and governance become essential to ensure responsible and ethical use while maximizing its potential benefits.


From the Web.

The rise of generative AI tools is posing a threat to outsourced workers, who are increasingly being replaced by machines that can do their jobs more cheaply and efficiently. This is having a significant impact on workers across the world who rely on outsourcing for their livelihoods. It is the responsibility of governments and businesses to help them adapt to the changing landscape of work.

Today, hybrid work doesn’t just refer to a balance between working from home and going to the office. The future of hybrid work also means humans and AI working together to create more efficient and productive teams. This new model of work will require businesses to invest in more advanced training and development for their employees, as well as in new technologies that can help humans and AI collaborate effectively.

Want to do great work? Find something you're passionate about, practice regularly, and set ambitious goals. This is a valuable soft skill that will help you succeed in any field.


Work Like Mäd: The Book.

Curious to learn how you can start and run your own professional service firm?

Check out our eBook, Work Like Mäd!

It’s based on 10+ years of experience (with many trials, errors, and failures in-between) and packed with lessons and advice on how to set up and grow a sustainable business, assemble a talented team, find the right projects, and keep clients coming back to you.

Get it here. (Or download a free chapter!)

Thank you for taking the time to read this newsletter. If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us at hi@mad.co. Our team is always here and ready to help.Find our collection of past newsletter editions here.

Enjoy the rest of the summer, and until next time!

#workwithmad

If you would like to #workwithmad then send us an email at hi@mad.co and let's Make It Happen.™

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