Christine Mau - Designing a Career in Design Thinking

“Can a Designer be a Strategist?” That was what one event participant asked Christine.

Design and strategy are not mutually exclusive. In fact, strategy should be fuelling and influencing design. This is what Christine Mau outlines in her strong portfolio as Senior Director of Global Design at Kimberly Clark where she handled projects for Kleenex, Huggies, and Kotex. She currently sits as Vice President of Brand Strategy at Medline Healthcare Solutions.

We discuss:
● Her career trajectory and how she went from running a small illustration company to being tapped to work for Kimberly Clark
● The growth she experienced within Kimberly Clark handling everything from packaging work to branding that led to forecasting, creating campaigns, design thinking, and innovation
● How she followed her curiosity to grow through the many roles she took on
● Three things she looks for in a career
● The success of her Kotex black packaging campaign
● Her pivot from a design branding focus to healthcare and strategy
● What Medline is and how she brought her wealth of expertise to help them zoom out from their products to zero in on their customers’ pain points
● Her advice of taking every opportunity to give value despite not having the title yet
● Not being boxed by labels and allowing your other skills to open doors you never thought to knock on in the first place
● Her definition of design thinking, why rapid prototyping is effective, and what it means to “test to learn” VS “test to validate”
● Her experience of being asked if a Designer can be a Strategist
● Her venn diagram of parts that make up good design in her standards
● Challenges she faced in her career, needing nudges to assert herself at the start, and building confidence
● The importance of surrounding yourself with a community where you build a network of learning and knowledge exchange
● How she stays inspired by traveling and trying new things
● Her personal manifesto on always doing your best and asking yourself where you want to be in five years

Mentioned in this epsiode:
Michele Ronsen: https://www.linkedin.com/in/michele-ronsen-0a55233 

To connect with Christine, head on over to her channels:
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/christinemau   
Website: https://www.christinemau.com/ 

Thanks for listening! If you enjoyed this episode of the podcast, head on over to the following links for more of my work and some valuable resources to get you started on your own branding initiatives. Until the next episode!


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The Brand Design Masters Podcast is targeted to entrepreneurs, designers, creative professionals and anyone interested in brand strategy, business planning, graphic design, personal branding, trends and marketing.

Philip VanDusen is the owner of Verhaal Brand Design, a brand strategy and design agency based in New Jersey. Philip is a highly accomplished creative executive and expert in brand strategy, graphic design, marketing and creative management. Philip provides design, branding, marketing, career and business advice to creative professionals, entrepreneurs and companies on how to build successful brands for themselves and for the clients and customers they serve.

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