This week we celebrate a milestone for Goldi.
We have also decided to celebrate some of the stories and experiences that have shaped the last 15 years with a series of stories over the next few weeks.
Tonight we hosted a small ‘Covid-safe’ gathering with some of our clients and collaborators at the Museum of Brisbane. Which for us was such an appropriate venue. It’s a place where they love to tell stories. Of the people and events that shaped Brisbane. It’s also a place where they create amazing experiences.
The first story…
So first cab off the rank… is that I would like to share my own story and a little bit about the future.
As I look back over the last 15 years in business, there’s many great stories, memories, experiences.
I can also see that building a small business was very similar to raising your first child.
From the beginning, things are chaotic, and it’s mostly just making it up as you go along, living with teething and tantrums (mostly my own), before settling into some more comfortable years where we started to show our personality and spunk. In both child raising and business there are times that are good and others that make you feel like giving up.
But you persist. You learn to have patience. Be flexible and enjoy the little wins.
The first 10 years was certainly a juggling act for me as Goldi was that demanding fourth child.
But what kept me going and feeding it was that it fed me in return. It gave me the opportunity to do something that I loved.
But more than that, it became clear that being able to help others to make the most of their opportunities was my passion. Bring their ideas to life. Whatever a client came to me with. I would find a way. Be that a new logo identity, a website or brochure. Wall murals or signage.
I did it all, as many graphic designers do, but I was always looking to push it further, how I could make it the best it could be. Make it meaningful. Solve the underlying problem.
The teenage years
Over the last five years, buoyed by getting to making the most of some amazing opportunities, I acknowledged that just like parenting, it is hard, if not impossible to go it alone.
So I gathered a team, of like-minded people. And things started to grow. I guess we hit puberty!
We pushed on with the stubbornness of a teenager. Finding our voice. Testing the boundaries.
Until we find ourselves at this age where we have started to really understand who we are, where we want to go. And thinking about the future.
Which reminds me of myself as a 15 year old girl. I was creative, ambitious and ready to take on the world. A bit strong willed too I’ll admit.
So it’s fitting that the age of 15 was when I decided to become a graphic designer. To be honest I had really no clue what it even was or what it could do. I grew up in the country. I didn’t know any designers. But it sounded cool. And from what I saw it looked like they got to play with colour, paper and letters.
It also trumped being a fashion designer in the odds of getting a job, which is what I had wanted to do up to that point.
I consider that a pivotal moment in my life when I came across that description in the careers guide. A moment of serendipity. A moment that put me in alignment with my purpose. My reason for being. That set me on the path through the child bearing years of business to where I am right now.
And now, it’s not just me with a that purpose. It’s me and a small but nimble team.
And we have decided to get very clear on how we can live that purpose.
Anyone who has been through a strategy session with me knows, looking into that is like opening a can of worms. It can be messy. But when everything is out of the can it’s easier to see and organise.
Out of the can of worms…
One outcome of this is that we’ve decided to change our hairstyle. We have updated our identity.
But as any good brand designer will tell you, there has to be more to it than just a logo. That’s just the top layer.
I can assure you it runs much deeper. Right to our roots.
The bigger outcome is we’re focussing on what we love. What we are good at. And what the world needs.
And as my designer Bec here tells me, that is what the Japanese call Ikigai.
What we love is working with brands and the built environment.
What we are good at is maximising the potential of opportunities
What the world needs is meaningful experiences that make people’s lives better
And experience is the key word there.
We have become a society driven by experience. More than ever customers equate brands and places with the experiences they have, and sharing those experiences is simpler than ever.
Our clients come from a diverse range of industries, but the clear connection for us, between them all, is how we can help them create better brand experiences.
This could be a rebrand for a business that needs to be very clear about who they are to stand out in the market, and then how to communicate that through their identity and story, and then making it consistent in all of the places that they are seen and heard.
Or a new development that needs to create a great experience before they’ve even turned the soil, to attract the right investment, all the way through to the customers finding their way around when it’s built.
So we see every moment is an experience. Every interaction is an opportunity to use design to influence that experience.
But why experience?
Think about a good experience that you’ve had lately. Actually make it a great experience.
How did you feel?
I’m thinking, snorkelling in the Whitsundays. Climbing a mountain. Hugging someone after not seeing them for 6 months?
What is going on in that moment.
There is a chemical reaction happening in your body. Maybe an adrenaline rush. Or a hit of endorphins.
There’s emotion and feeling.
There’s also a shift in your brain in how you think about things. This is the thing that we want to achieve.
So for us, now, we think about the brands and environments in which we work with as an opportunity to create experiences that do that very thing.
That move people and shift their thinking, about the brand or place, or perhaps how they see themselves and the world.
And if we can do that, we have connected with them on a deeper human level.
We have made an impact in their day or their life.
And at the same time we’re building value in the brand or place.
So this may seem like a philosophical idea, but in reality, we believe it’s where brands and places need to be these days.
Maybe it’s those teenage hormones rushing through our veins. But we look at the future and we see infinite possibilities. We are creative. We are ambitious. We are ready to take on the world.
And where we need to, and want to put out effort is into create meaningful brand experiences.
And if you are willing. We’d love to take you on this journey of experience with us.