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Predictable Magic: Unleash the Power of Design Strategy to Transform Your Business Hardcover – July 29, 2010

ISBN-13: 978-0137023486 ISBN-10: 0137023480 Edition: 1st

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: FT Press; 1 edition (July 29, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0137023480
  • ISBN-13: 978-0137023486
  • Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 0.8 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,049,858 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Deepa Prahalad is a business strategist specializing in opportunities at the intersection of consumer experience, technology, and strategy. She has experience in a wide range of industries and has worked as a management consultant with firms from start-ups to large multinationals. Passionate about emerging markets and innovation, she began her career researching how to improve efficiency in UN procurement and later moved to Singapore to become a commodities trader with Cargill. She holds a BA in Political Science and Economics from the University of Michigan and an MBA from the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth.

 

Ravi Sawhney is founder and CEO of RKS, a global leader in strategy, innovation, and design. Sawhney’s contributions to the industrial design profession are legendary. At Xerox, he was sole Industrial Designer working with a team of 20 cognitive and social scientists to develop the world’s first touch-screen interface. Sawhney has been recognized with nearly every major industrial design award and has helped RKS’ elite clients generate more than 150 patents. He invented the popular Psycho-Aesthetics® design strategy presented in this book, an approach that has been profiled as a Harvard Business School case study.


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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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The authors did a very good job of not only writing an informative book but an enjoyable one as well.
Ashley Mott
The book describes the process the company RKS uses, it is called Psycho-Aesthetics and it is about creating emotional connections between consumers and designs.
Steve Burns
Predictable Magic offers a very practical approach to driving innovation within your new product strategy, design and development process.
E. T. Hightower

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Mark P. McDonald TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on March 14, 2011
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Predictable Magic is a book about design and its critical role in establishing a successful product, one that makes both a functional and emotional connection with its customers. The issue of design thinking and design practice is hot right now as companies look to compete in an ever competitive environment where cost alone is not the only purchase consideration. Deepa Prahalad and Ravi Sawhney's book is a solid addition to the body of research, stories and processes regarding design thinking.

This book is both a discussion of the need for design thinking and the demonstration of the author's particular tools to accomplish design thinking. This book is a portfolio of examples for Prahalad and Sawhney's company RKS and therefore its treatment of design thinking is limited to those practices. That is not necessarily a bad thing, but readers looking to understand the broader design thinking movement will need to look to other books.

The tone of the book discusses their (RKS's) success more than how you can be successful with design thinking. While this is understandable, it places the reader outside of the design process as an observer rather than considering that the reader wants to learn more about how you apply these techniques. That is the primary reason why this book is a three star review.

This book is good. Not as good as Tim Brown's Change by Design, which came out last year and really seems to define what design thinking is all about on a broader basis.

Strengths

The book takes a few examples, like the development of a cell phone, and works them through their process. This helps the reader see how each step in their design process.

The tools are helpful and well described.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Shelley Takahashi on October 24, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Design professionals as well as design students can learn from Predictable Magic.

I teach industrial design classes at the Art Institute in LA and I am the chair for the LA chapter of the Industrial Designers Society of America. Teaching students how to design products that resonate with consumers emotionally and creating a compelling user experience is not easy. My design psychology students could not relate to the concepts from other books. Mid-quarter, I introduced the "Psycho-Aesthetic" mapping concept from Predictable Magic. The light bulbs turned on in their heads.

Predictable Magic is easy to comprehend and will be helpful when I give presentations as a professional. It is a great diagnostic tool as well as story telling tool. The platform will be understood by Executives, Buyers, Marketing, Sales, Finance and Design.

One of the authors, Ravi Sawhney, is a member of IDSA and recently gave an overview of the "Psycho-Aesthetic" process at our local design lecture series. I recommend that if you have a chance to attend one of his lectures, you do not pass up the opportunity.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Professor H TOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on January 12, 2011
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
This book goes into detail on how to make a connection with your customer or the consumer. Details on the importance of the connection and the marketing of your product and the qualities of your product or service. The books goal is to transofrm your thinking about what your product is and what you are actually selling or should be selling to make a personal connection with your audience. Book does this through stories and comparison companies, inventors, and marketors. Interesting if you are in the production of a product or service. Will not transfer to all products or services but it shows you must make your biz personal to reach the mega levels of sales and profitability.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Sam Santhosh VINE VOICE on April 10, 2011
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Product Design is mostly considered as an art form. However in `Predictable Magic', Deepa Prahalad and Ravi Sawhney introduces a framework that they call Phsycho-Aesthetics, through which the design process can be aligned to corporate strategy, enabling businesses to come up with successful product designs. Companies like Apple, Google and Amazon have shown how critical it is to build deep emotional connections between their consumers and product brands. But how do we map this process? How do we get business managers, engineering professionals and designers on the same page? Read this book to understand how the Phsycho-Aesthetics approach will help a company achieve this.

In the first part of the ebook, the authors show you how their framework can help in developing user-centric designs through consumer `personas', mapping business goals to product features, targeting specific segments with unmet needs, and develop market winning strategies. In the second part they take you through the implementation of the design strategy and how to continuously engage the customers. With many real life case studies understanding of the framework becomes very easy.

I am not sure if entirely new designs or concepts can be created using the Pyshco-Aesthetics approach, but it will definitely help any entrepreneur, business manager or designer in validating their product design approach. I would strongly recommend this book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By John Gibbs TOP 1000 REVIEWER on February 3, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Consumers engage with products and services for emotional reasons and adopt based on rich and fulfilling experience, according to Deepa Prahalad and Ravi Sawhney in this book. That is why it is important to use emotion and experience as a starting point for strategy and design. This enables the designer to create the connection to a product or service that makes people want to spread the joy of their discovery.

The authors go on to describe a design approach called "Psycho-Aesthetics". This includes a two-dimensional mapping process in which the vertical axis shows the degree of need, from essential through to aspirational, while the horizontal axis shows the degree of interactivity from passive through to immersive. Existing products can be placed in their appropriate locations on the map, as can different groups of consumers, in order to identify gaps which might be suitable for the design of new products.

The book describes a number of products which have become successful as a result of innovative designs, many of which have been created by RKS Design, a firm founded by one of the authors. These include a refrigerator, a loudspeaker, a water bottle and a guitar. The stories behind these products show the great amount of research which goes into creating a product which not only looks good but provides a positive consumer experience in every aspect.

However, while the book provides convincing evidence that RKS Design is capable of designing great products, it does not in my opinion fully live up to the promise of telling the reader how to use the design strategy to create "predictable magic". Plenty of research and imagining of the consumer experience seem to be necessary but not sufficient ingredients. The additional magic tricks of aesthetic design and inspired marketing are not fully described, although it may be impossible to do so. Nevertheless, I found the book enjoyable to read.
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