Hi. I'm Laate. If you love building new products, experiences and businesses as much as I do, then we're going to get along famously.
As a designer, I’ve developed concepts for a range of companies including Steelcase Inc, the Museum of Science & Industry, Mayo Clinic, Mattel, and Motorola. While with Steelcase Inc’s Growth Initiatives, I worked with teams to research opportunities, design and pitch business models, and develop three businesses for Steelcase Inc – Workspring, MyTurnstone, and a coworking space called 654 Croswell.
Today, I'm happy to say that I'm oftentimes immersed in projects, discussions and lectures with people just doing cool things. Most recently I successfully crowdfunded Hopscotch Wall & Car Mount for iPhone - a simple place to keep your phone and keys.
My Process: Uncover, Envision, Pitch
Whether I’m developing a film, a website, a product or a new business platform, my creative process begins in the same way – I assume that I don’t have a clue. I’ve found this to be more likely to produce a new perspective. After all if a so-called solution already exists, then there shouldn’t be a problem.
While it’s fun to uncover an opportunity, it’s even more enjoyable to develop a vision that people can experience immediately. I’ve enjoyed developing prototypes of all kinds – from sketches to interactive prototypes to being spaces. I oftentimes dive in and put pen to paper and mouse to screen, but I also enjoy directing teams.
The elevator pitch is that critical synopsis of an idea. Think of it as show & tell for grownups. Except the stakes are oftentimes a bit higher. Instead of presenting to teachers, I’m oftentimes presenting in front of leaders of companies, communities, and venture funds. But it’s just as fun as it was when I was a kid.
In the Press
- "High Efficiency Or Great Service?" by Diccon Hyatt
- "Inventing the future: local makers flex their talents at the city's 'gym for innovators'" by Dana Henry
- "There's No Other Place Like This" - interview with NextFab Studio
"Co-working space in East Grand Rapids has cottage atmosphere, no long-term contracts" by Deborah Johnson Wood
"Design a Better 'Third' Place" by Steelcase 360