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June 16th, 2009

NeoCon 2009, White Town

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Written by: Design-Engine
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Recession shows signs of improving and people are loving the white furniture in Chicago, the new White Town. It’s always a sensory overload walking NeoCon and this year was not different. Usually there is some sort of color theme and this year white seemed to stand out along all manufactures and brands.

Coalesse is a new premium brand within Steelcase Inc. launching at the NeoCon World’s Trade Fair 2008. Coalesse – is a consolidation of the Brayton, Metro, and Vecta into one brand… could it be they want you to grow ivy through these chairs and leave them out all summer?

In light of the recession many of the sales people gave similar responses. That the economy was picking up that orders were higher than expected. Teknion made a proactive statement with their ‘Future’ booklet. I included it’s paraphrased here:

“Perhaps it’s time to consider what recession has to teach us about optimism. What do General Electric and Disney have in common? Caterpillar, HP and Microsoft? All of these successful, Fortune 100 companies, started up during periods of steep economic decline. GE and HP – along with Motorola, Converse and Fortune Magazine – were founded during the Great Depression that began with the stock market crash of Black Tuesday, October 19, 1929. Still, these companies weathered the deepest slide of the 20th century and are doing business successfully today. How did they do it?” For some, the solution was to branch out and diversify; others created a demand with aggressive advertising and promotional campaigns. But perhaps most successful were those who found new ways to satisfy needs; those who had original ideas and could think outside whatever box they were in. Good ideas always have room to succeed. Charles Schwab introduced discount brokering in 1974 when the economy was reeling from the oil crisis of 1973-1974 – a controversial new concept that eventually became part of the financial mainstream. A year later, with inflation still spiraling out of control, Bill Gates launched a startup. Bold creative thinking – and a degree of optimism – played a fundamental role in its success.

The global recession asks us to look beyond the current moment to think about what business might look like on the other side. Certainly, it will take some radical re-thinking – and all the human inventiveness we can muster – if we are to clear a path for sustainable growth. But untapped opportunities are there to be uncovered. And we can pool the talents of people at every level to identify, design and implement real solutions. In the end, it all comes down to people – that’s where new ideas come from. So, it makes sense to attend an engaging, inspiring ,and human-centered training environment that creates a context for creativity, teamwork, and innovation. And it helps to remember that everything is temporary. Downturns become upturns, and it’s smart to be ready when the upswing comes.

The sky is not falling.

Just a note, All the manufactures listed here use Pro/Engineer to develop their seating products. The only chair that Pro/Engineer was not used is the airport chair.

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