(moved) IDEO innovation and salaries

a few weeks ago ideo had a job posting in coroflot, so i sent an email asking them about the salary range at ideo, they didn’t reply.

that’s innovative!

Why should they tell you more about the job unless they know you are qualified? I wouldn’t expect ANY company to divulge sensitive information like that to ANY person who just emails them.

i was just curious about the salary range. it’s nothing awkward. sensitive information - you make me laugh. i didn’t ask of the secret formula for the swiss chocolate.

I do not expect they will be successful for ever

first of all thanks to stevep for creating a new thread on this. :smiley:

i believe a company or a design studio has to be transparent in all aspects of design involvement including format, structure, philosophy, standards, projects/duration, external relations, collaborations, dedication, finance, etc. in order to be sucessfull.

if these elements are not transparently defined innovation is not the top priority, rather business would become the top priority.

unfortunately we’re going through a period of massive information funnels which choke companies when they want to make a move. and usually they rely on old business tactics to save time and money. it’s a multiple hybrid situation where the road you take defines your advancement into the market.

this brings up the chicken / egg arguement of which one came first? business or innovation (ok i’ll start one on this back on the innovation section).

well, usually in these types of arguements it’s better to introduce other issues for instance management.

instinctively management will go for the business, but is it also drawn to innovation?

in case of ideo, since they like to portray that’s the founding stone of the company, they should also be transparent about other aspects mentioned above.

not offering that leverage they instantly become another typical studio with the same routine. unless ofcourse everybody else has followed ideo in their pursuit of innovation.

the reality of life is that to function as an innovator, a company must have the funding (at the very least) of a business. If every aspect of their business were “transparent” then what would stop others from copying their techniques (including philosophy, standards, etc) and then undercutting them in the finance portion of the business - thereby eliminating any source of revenue.

as an outside business man - if company A tries to sell you a service for $100, and then company B tries to sell you the (seemingly) same service for $95; then you would logically go with company B. Because, if told you they had the same process, as a consumer (the businessman) how would you know that company B did not develop any innovative processes on their own.

business practices that are completely transparent would destroy any company - especially a company that makes its $$ on selling a creative service.

i didn’t mention anything about specific processes, resources, or revealing your design before it’s in the market.

all design groups struggle with profitability - it’s not a high margin business, even when you are as big as IDEO. When any group hires they try to find great people and pay them just enough to keep them. Sometimes they pay more than they want to for a key talent that fills a critical need that they are hungry to fix - but they will expect high performance to prove the value of paying more. Sometimes they pay less, because the candidate is hungry for the job, or demands less - this is how they balance their team’s ability to be profitable.
It’s important to ask how you would fit in the team when you negotiate - ask what value they think you will bring. Be sure you ask that question!

This is the most ridiculous post I’ve ever read. What makes you think that by sending a random email asking about salary range to a job you’re not even being considered for, that they would even consider responding???

I just sent an email to IDEO and ask them to reveal what is the salary history for the last 3 people in that position.

If a company asks for your salary history why shouldn’t you do the same?

Ask all you want…I’m sure they’ll send a response right away :unamused:

if i was IDEO and i found out who it was that called asking for that information, I would make sure everyone i worked with and knew in the business would balcklist them.

what do you think this is, your parents house and you deserve an allowance to go play paintball or buy another playstation on your trust fund cash?


just because you made a job post it doesnn’t mean you can go around blacklisting people for asking legit questions.

i can also ask core not to allow ideo post their jobs and i’ll compensate core for it.

If I were an employer I wouldn’t talk salary with someone until I was sure I wanted them on board. It’s only logical. The job candidate shouldn’t talk salary with a potential employer until they understand the employers needs and how they can fill those needs. What makes you think they should answer every random email they receive. NO company would answer that question!

i didn’t claim they have to answer. i just said they think that’s part of an innovative system.

but i do claim if you talk about innovation it should be transparent in all aspects and at all levels, indeed.

unfortunately some people confuse innovative communication with random emails!

ufo wrote:

"a few weeks ago ideo had a job posting in coroflot, so i sent an email asking them about the salary range at ideo, they didn’t reply.

that’s innovative!"

so what would you do if IDEO would pass you this information:

salaries within IDEO:

35.000$ - 150.000$


this salary range you will find in almost every big ID house… but that won’t really make your day, will it?

Hey, stop beating up on the kid!! Yeah, you did something a bit stupid, but the good news is that IDEO is a relatively big place, so the email probably didn’t get spread about or talked about. It probably just got ignored.

Yes, a real business with a real human resources department and real hiring processes would probably post a salary range. IDEO and, for that matter, most small service consultancies won’t. They need to squeak every penny out of their junior staff so that the stakeholders can make a reasonable living. As a result, they will hold their cards pretty tight and won’t give you any more leverage than they have to.

Companies like IDEO and Frog are large companies by ID standards, but they are small businesses by the rest of the world’s standards. At the same time, there are 300 potential junior staff beating down their doors for every ID job.

As a result, they almost exclusively hire from their intern pool…it’s easier for them. Unfortunately for you, they set the rules of the game, so if you want to get in their door, you’ve got to play their way.

An internship is the place to start (there are 300 people applying for that job, too), so make a killer 8.5"11 .pdf emailer (find a way to show that you can listen to directions and that you can provide the services that workgroup bills their clients for), a portfolio that focuses on the specific needs of one of that workgroup (find a way to show that you can listen to directions and that you can provide the services that workgroup bills their clients for) and find someone who can get you a conversation with the person who runs that workgroup.

Call that person, ask what sort fo help they need from interns, for their advice about getting a internship in a group LIKE THEIRS, ask for their email and TELL them that you will send them an email demonstrating these services in the next three days. DON’T ask for a job directly. Ask for advice on tweaking the email for OTHER INTERSHIPS…If they want you, THEY will bring it up.

The trick is to keep advancing the conversation without making them uncomfortable. To do this, you need to walk a tight rope:

  1. Don’t waste their time.
  2. Show that you can provide sought after, immediately billable skills.
  3. Don’t ask them about confidential information (like their current clients and projects, what they earn, etc.) Keep your Q’s general in terms of details and focused in terms of information. Ask what industrial sector they are focused on in instead of: How much seating work are you doing for Steelcase right now.
  4. Keep them comfortable talking to you. Clients are like girls. Show you are interested, but never seem like you just want to get in ther pants. It makes them uncomfortable.

One thing that I often do is recommend a book based on one of their Q’s (and send it, without asking via AMAZON the next day. Sort of the business version of sending flowers) it makes you look like you paid attention, that you know something that they need to know about, and that you are resourceful…And they have to write to thank you about it, creating an excuse for a follow up phone call that they have to take (they probably won’t actually read the book, then again, that’s not the point. The point is that you read the book, that you are smart and that you are unique because you know about something they need).

The Professor.

the way you describe this lot seems they’re in need of a clinical psycologist more than a design assailant!

If you are at IDEO, ask them how much of their billable hours are spent on innovation/project definition and how many are spent on implimentation. I’ll be my bottom dollar that, just like everyone else, they are making their money on getting projects out the door, not on design odysseys.

Though the growth of their ethnography department is interesting…are they making money off of that, or is it a tool to get the implimentation work in the door?

such a dumb topic… you don’t have anything better to do?