I’m just a supplier, standing in front of a specifier, asking them to love me.
December 22nd, 2016
Yes, they’re terribly stupid. They’re trite and overdone and very, very predictable. And yet, what can A+D possibly learn from romantic comedies?
Well, forget ‘love’, first of all.
You see, all of us in the A+D industry could learn quite a bit from the humble rom-com. But not love.
I’m talking ‘business’. BIG business.
Let’s think about it. Here’s a genre all about meetings, two or more parties, the high stakes of the happy ending, the bottom line of pursuit, of competition, of relationships… of coming out on top. Every. Single. Time.
Sure, this article is a little light-hearted – a bit of fun. But, in a way, it’s not entirely trivial. I have in mind the oft-misunderstood figure of the supplier. Ours is a tough industry, it takes no prisoners and makes no apologies. And, there is perhaps no tougher role within our market than that of the supplier.
Competition is rife – globally rife – and our particular geographical position doesn’t help annoying problems like lead times, budget overheads, customisation. It’s a tough gig. But, suppliers, even with all of the odds stacked against you, you’re still no Rocky.
Why? Of course, you’re an underdog (who isn’t!). But be honest, you’re really more of a romantic. Why else do we go to so many industry events? …To compete? No, of course not. It’s to meet ‘them’.
You know, ‘The One’.
Prince Charming – an elusive figure in our industry. But, they exist. And for us suppliers, we simply can’t wait to be whisked off our feet, carried into the sunset (read: have our design specified in a multi-storey, multi-national roll out of a newly incorporated conglomerate).
What a dream boat…
But where are they? Sometime’s it’s easy to go down Bridget Jones’ route, ice-cream and wine in hand, and declare that the pursuit of Prince Charming is just too hard.
I’m here to say, don’t give up on that dream.
Our industry is changing faster and more drastically than ever before. The exponentially widespread advance of globalisation and our virtual connectivity means that, for the A+D community, the ever-elusive first meeting – the ‘introduction’ – is becoming a problem.
When once e-mail correspondence was easily accessible and perfectly accepted, in our increasingly connected and increasingly global business, never has the need for trust-building been more paramount. Yes, as we’re becoming increasingly digitised the number of tasks and efficiencies which the digital interface can complete better (and certainly faster) than we used to is impressive – scary, even. But as our industry continues to grow, the A+D professional population has never been higher. As a result, digital can’t compete. In the realm of human interaction – the foundation of building strong bonds of trust across the full spectrum of A+D – getting out and about, meeting people and not waiting around for that phone-call is swiftly becoming the foundation which leads to results.
So, step away from the phone! That specifier or architect or journalist you met at a product launch 4 weeks ago isn’t going to call you back. Why? Because it’s an acquaintance…
And, you’re after a relationship. Right?
In 2017, Indesign Media Asia Pacific is playing the ultimate A+D Cupid. Next August 11-12th, we’re coming to take over the streets with an international design experience curated in Sydney, for Sydney.
Sydney Indesign 2017 is all about stepping away from the phone and meeting the specifier, designer, supplier and design-enthusiast of your dreams. A good deal of our industry’s life is building social bonds – having dinner with people, attending launches and demonstrations, informative seminars, (getting drunk with each other…) – and that’s what Sydney Indesign 2017 (SID17) is all about: relationships.
After taking our event to Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, Singapore and Hong Kong in previous years, we’re returning home to where it all began. SID17 is the prime mover-and-shaker in the regional A+D event circuit, proving why the entire global design industry needs to get together and present their R&D for the year ahead. This isn’t just the latest ranges and products, it’s innovative and revolutionary ways of thinking and living in design; it’s all branches of our enormous industry coming together to collaborate, focus and meet; it’s suppliers meeting specifiers; it’s architects meeting engineers; it’s designers meeting distributors; it’s YOU meeting the person of your dreams.
So, what happens when your specifier climbs up and rescues you?
You rescue them right back.
INDESIGN is on instagram
A searchable and comprehensive guide for specifying leading products and their suppliers
The internet never sleeps! Here's the stuff you might have missed