Wallis stated that technology doesn’t determine invention. It was explained how 90% of innovations fail, using the personal digital assistant; the Newton, developed by Apple in 1987, as his example. The guest lecturer stressed that a reason for this failure was because of the way in which the Newton platform was conceived. “The best can’t be predicted”. With this quote, Wallis is referring to how a producer combines luck with preparation when stumbling across an invention in a eureka moment, as apposed to a product being forced into production by a board of directors drunk on PowerPoint presentations and analytics.
With a far less whimsical approach, the guest lecturer declared that ‘you’ could have the best idea in the world but if it doesn’t fit the client’s needs, it will not be commissioned. Reflecting on my personal development, my expertise has been rejected in the past where I, as part of 8bit Lemon, have failed to be successful in pitching for a particular project. It was emphasised that potential clients are often talking to three other companies at any one time, something that is all too true in the industry and a reality I have been a victim of first hand. Wallis explains how one must refine an “elevator pitch” that exists in less than fifty words, that strips the “bullshit” and cuts to the chase of the proposal.
What I found interesting was a theme that ran throughout the entirety of Richard Wallis’ lecture, this being the idea that the client is “everybody’s business”. Even though the client may not be everybody’s priority in the running of the company, finding, pitching and handling client’s needs to involve an entire workforce. Poor producer/client communication encourages faulted expectations and missed deadlines, all of which loses the client’s trust. I will be taking action in attempting to apply my newfound appreciation for the client, introducing “The Client Factor” to personal ventures of mine and 8bit Lemon, student start-up creative agency of which I co-founded.