Abhinav Anand
Design Digest

"There is a shift from group work to individualistic work": Shekhar Badve, Lokusdesign

In our series 'Design Digest', we explore what the world looks like from the desk of brands' design heads, as they face new challenges.

Here's what Shekhar Badve, founder director, Lokusdesign, has to say:

How has the ongoing crisis changed the challenges facing design teams? What is the biggest change?

Initially, the challenges were collaboration on design ideas, or the lag due to technologies. Though web meetings, slack and mural were there, sketching and sharing ideas real time was a challenge. The biggest change is in the way work, or design processes, are conducted. There is a shift from group working to individualistic working.

The nature of conversation has changed with clients and teams, and hence, the challenges have changed. More deeper, long-term strategic conversations have begun. Newer opportunities, rather than challenges, I would say.

One change is people have become real, and are willing to look at harmony, rather than short-term gains. The urge to make the most of the present time, and give little thought to the future has changed.

"The biggest change is in the way work, or design processes, are conducted"

How has the client brief changed? We're sure it's more complicated than putting virtual masks on brand logos...

Clients are looking at sustainable, newer and long-term ideas, strategies and solutions. These expectations make great opportunities for us. They are keen to know innovative, breakthrough ideas, or alternative approaches... big shift from traditional methods and mindset. People have realised masks and anything meaningless won't stick. Newer paradigms are needed hereon...

Everyone is dividing time and reality into pre and post-COVID. For a design executive and leader, what does the post-COVID world look like, in terms of work, skill sets, and related demands?

In the post-COVID world, work will be decentralised, and touchless and automation will be used to mitigate contagion. There will be repurposed skills, objects and spaces, and we'll see design for resilience, remote sharing and online collaboration.

Reskilling, to a great extent, has to be done, and many new skills would be needed. They include remotely building over a trail of ideas, high digital skills, feedback loops and methods for virtual data gathering and synthesis.