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This video will give you the answers. It will introduce you to four Norwegian enterprises: Kolonial.no, reMarkable, Munch Museum and Ruter. They are all very successful, which they believe is entirely down to good design leadership.  

 “The most important thing for a company is to understand its customers’ needs,” says Marius Røstad, head of Ruter’s new customer service department. 

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Kolonial.no – putting the user at the centre 

Kolonial.no is a seamless home delivery service that puts the user at the centre of everything they do. Customers love the service, and orders have rocketed over the last year. The company believes that its success is mainly due to three factors that are all typical characteristics of good design leadership:  

  • A design-driven culture with a good customer experience as its primary value.  
  • An interdisciplinary team with the confidence and authority to improve and build on the product or service based on the customer’s needs.  
  • The journey from feedback to improvement is short, thanks to the close cooperation between the development teams and those in contact with customers, which means drivers and customer service.  

“For me, design leadership is about creating the right conditions, so that the designers on a team can do their best. We also talk a lot about having to solve the right problem before we solve the problem right,” says Mike Jones, UX manager at Kolonial.no.

iPad App for Kolonial.no hjemlevering
Kolonial.no is a seamless home delivery service that puts the user at the center of everything they do.
Photo: Andreas Kleiberg

reMarkable – banging a big drum for interdisciplinarity 

The technology company reMarkable was established in 2013. Its ambition was to make a digital notebook that would help us stay focused on our work, without distractions, and recreate the feeling of writing on paper. 

Chief design officer and one of the founders, Mats Herding, believes that their success is because they make the importance of interdisciplinarity absolutely clear to everyone in the company, including the designers:  

 “I’ve been going round with a big drum that says that design is important, and banging it in people’s ears. I also have a big drum that I use in the design department, which says that design is not the only thing in the world. So interdisciplinarity is important, and it is what makes us good,” he says.  

ReMarkable 2
The goal of reMarkable is to create a digital notebook that will help us work focused and without distractions, and recreate the feeling of writing on paper.
Photo: Susann Daljord

Munch Museum – using design to achieve goals  

When the new Munch Museum needed new furniture, it was the designers Jonas Stokke and Andreas Engesvik that were tasked with designing the pieces. The manufacturing work went to the premier outdoor furniture maker in Norway – Vestre. 

The Munch furniture came into being in the interface between design, hand-crafting traditions and ultramodern industrial mass production. No less important than its beautiful look, is the fact that the furniture must fulfil a purpose for the user and have as little impact on the environment as possible.  

The result is furniture that is so durable that in theory it can last forever, manufactured using one hundred per cent renewable energy and materials with a minimal impact on the climate.   

“This furniture helps us to create a complete art experience for the public. People tend to think that design is the icing on the cake. But the way we look at it, it is a more effective way of achieving the goals we have set ourselves,” says Gerd Elise Mørland, head of department at the Munch Museum. 

Munchmuseets nye møbelkolleksjon er et kunststykke skapt i møtet mellom håndverk og industri
The Munch furniture has been created in the meeting between design, craft traditions and ultra-modern industrial mass production.
Photo: Nicolas Tourrenc

Ruter – addressing customers’ needs 

Ruter is no longer just a transport company. Its vision now is to give customers “sustainable freedom of movement”. That’s why the company has developed a new app that makes it easier than ever to choose to travel on public transport. It brings everything we need into one place: tickets, journey planner and new functions such as personal profile, map and real-time bus capacity.  

“The most important thing for a company is to understand its customers’ needs. If you don’t, another company will come along that will. This is the foundation of design thinking. It is customer orientation, testing, prototyping, iteration – that cycle – so that you always understand your customers’ needs before someone else does,” says Marius Røstad, head of Ruter’s new customer service department. 

Ruter
The Router app brings together everything we need in one place: tickets, itineraries and new features such as personal profile, maps and real-time bus capacity.
Photo: Ruter