Ben Fredricks joined our family business on November 30, 2009 and it’s been a wonderful journey, so far!
They say that height and talent skip a generation. This is entirely the case in our family. Please note that, Ben is not standing on a soapbox in the photo above.
Ben is a well rounded designer with the ability to sketch, render, model and figure out how things will work when the concepts ultimately go into production. (more…)
All of our clients struggle with the same challenges; they have limited internal design and engineering resources, too many projects and not enough time to complete them. They are also looking for fresh insights to develop new products that build an emotional connection with the end user. This situation is prevalent across all markets and companies.
The annual North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) is held in January in Detroit. Many of our clients begin scrambling in early fall for resources to meet tight timelines and technical challenges to prepare properties and prototypes for the show.
This brief case study follows our work with a key client from September 2014 through the installation of show properties at NAIAS in January 2015.
How we started?
I read several papers each week. Every now and then, an article hits home and prompts reflections on the changing world and our product development business. The Wall Street Journal article “Uber snags a ride to China with Baidu” affirms fundamental business conditions and highlights several significant challenges for new technologies and emerging markets.
Uber is a technology based, mobile app solution connecting passengers with private drivers in metropolitan areas. It is an alternative to traditional taxis and other modes of public transportation. Their website describes them in this way: “Uber is evolving the way the world moves. By seamlessly connecting riders to drivers through our apps, we make cities more accessible, opening up more possibilities for riders and more business for drivers. From our founding in 2009 to our launches in over 200 cities today, Uber’s rapidly expanding global presence continues to bring people and their cities closer.” (more…)
Fredricks Design has built a business on the ability to collaborate around solving product development challenges. We regularly do this using internal brainstorm sessions and structured workshops involving participants from clients’ teams and manufacturing resources. We’ve recognized the benefit of putting key people together and the resulting synergy. The value of these “formal” gatherings is clearly documented with stacks of concept sketches and lists of opportunities to explore further.
But sometimes collaboration occurs more organically, is unscheduled and unstructured and is initiated around a very specific task or problem. Often this spontaneous collaboration occurs when someone is trying to work outside of their skillset or in unfamiliar territory. Sometimes an idea just won’t “click,” but they feel the drive to push-on until a solution is achieved. (more…)