A group of members of the AIGA Mentor Program took a trip over to Grip Design yesterday to learn more about their attitude towards design, their goals, how they operate (their team is only around 10 people, but they have some rather large assignments), and perhaps most importantly, what they value. Kevin McConkey, the co-founder and principle of Grip had much to share. Graced by the banter of witty stories and peppered with driving ideals the company revolves around, it was definitely very interesting seeing some of the major differences between large firms (I'm thinking Publicis Groupe size) and very small teams like this one.
I was also able to talk with Lonnie, their producer and strategist to ask more specific questions on how to best direct my studies at ID to best enter the workforce. I was really delighted to hear that some of the things the group values most are the things I'm currently working on in my classes... Building and understanding context to help predict future trends and values, research leading to design analysis and synthesis, facilitating interdisciplinary teams, and prototyping methods to really get an idea of a process, service, or product.
Grip does seem like they know how to throw a good party, and were wonderful hosts to our group of students and young professionals. Much thanks goes out to them for their time, for opening their doors to us, and allowing us to pick their brains.
Want to know more about our trip? Visit AIGA's post about the trip as well!