Bangle Essay, Research Paper
In an article from Harvard Business Review entitled How BMW Turns Art into Profit, Chris Bangle describes his goal to give the designers of this company direction and insight. This skillful man has developed a procedure to keep two completely different departments of the company happy and successful.
Before Chris Bangle, the designers of the company were left without a department head. They needed a manager, but most of all someone to support their ideas rather than put them down. He first explains how he must notice the difference between the artists and the engineers. He explains that artists see that perfection comes in stages. On the contrary, Engineers believe that perfection must be completed right the first time.
Chris Bangle believes that his designers are emotional and sensitive, and tries to take that into consideration before reacting to a design. He must also protect them from unintended, sometimes hurtful, criticism from others. In order to do this he says that there must be a seperation between the two departments. He monitors every entry into the design department, walls off sensitive models, and hangs signs around that state, STOP: NO ENTRY . Engineers are also not allowed to enter unattended, while the artists are at work.
In the design department each artist is in competition with the next, which Bangle also has to deal with. He sometimes lets the artists work in different environments, away from BMW. He also uses positive reinforcement, and provides personal coaching. This way there is no hard feelings when one design is chosen over another. Chris Bangle also lets the artists play with expensive equipment to help them create new ideas.
Protecting the process itself is another way to help the product not to enter the engineering department too early. He says there are three steps to do this successfully. One is the understanding phase, or acceptance of the idea they are working towards. The second is the believing phase, which helps to make the design realistic. And the third phase, seeing, is when they zero in on the designs defects. Finally Bangle says that enforcing strict deadlines helps the artists to work harder and to ensure the design has reached perfection before the engineers look at it.
Chris Bangle, on top of all this, must establish communication among the designers and the engineers. He states that he must keep things concrete by relying on amusing postures, gestures and noises to get ideas across. He must also help others visualize by using cartoons and sketches, traditionally. Bangle states that finally he focuses on the Big Picture rather than minute details.
Art and commerce has learned to work together in this company, as it should. Although there is independence in both areas there is a strong cooperation of both departments over all. Chris Bangle has demonstrated that with honesty from a good manager, and comprehension from everybody, designers and engineers are able to create terrific ideas and carry them out to be successful.