Q&A

What does the TREND means for 360inspiration?

To my company and to our clients, trends mean a general AWARENESS of the world to come. It is AWARENESS about movements in society, economy, and geopolitics as well as in technology. You need a lot of information to provide strategic advice to tomorrow’s businesses.

From my own experience, I can say that businesses often confuse “trends “with the consumer trends for “the girl next door” (consumer perception on today’s marketing and mass production). Our “trends “are not about fancy fashion or interior magazines or seasonal shoes and bags.

How do you collect all the information?

To collect all the necessary information, I am constantly travelling. Annually, I am visiting more than 20 of the most influential trade fairs, conferences, cities and design weeks. The information I collect is carefully analysed and implemented into a project’s processes. At 360inspiration we believe in a 360 degrees approach. The 360 degrees refer to the ability to change the perspective. I feel like I am an extension of my client’s and designer’s eyes.

How do you connect the relevant information?

I am constantly monitoring eight different industries. My spectrum of interests ranges from medical tools, consumer electronics, and professional equipment to packaging and food and a wide scope of mobility. I am nonstop searching for the cross-fertilisation of ideas that I need to initiate the innovative spark my clients need. Just to give you an example, the newest hinge that is developed for Airbus A380 can be implemented into a new fridge or oven, which enables the use of different materials in the design of kitchen appliances.

How do you share your information?

In the past, I published more than 40 Trend Books. I even received the Red Dot Communication Awards in 2009. These books were to inspire my clients. But, in the era of new media and networking society, a book is already “yesterday “when published. That’s why I decided to go online and communicate my inspirations through a blog. I called it “360inspiration”. The 360° Inspiration blog is not about ready-made trends and trend books; the blog is about “food for thought” for people who want to know more. Also, every year I deliver more than 30 keynote trend lectures* and trend master classes all over the world.

It looks like your job is your passion?

You can only be a Trend watcher if you have a passion. It is not a nine-to-five job. It is 24/7 sensitivity the world around. I read and watch many opinion-making magazines and TV programmes. Among my favourite reads are Harvard Business Review and BusinessWeek. For a good BBC documentary I can stay awake all night.