Farrah Bostic

Founder, The Difference Engine


CX is the CEO's Job

Mon 24 October 16

Dozens of management and innovation philosophies have been put forward over the last 100 years, and hundreds of books have been written about them. Nearly all maintain that a deep understanding of the customer is the route to success, so why are we suffering through frustrating service experiences, products launches nobody wants and marketing using the worst of stereotypes? It’s easy to blame organisational apathy, but the truth is, the fish rots from the head. The ultimate responsibility for developing empathy with customers, understanding real customer needs, designing useful (and beautiful) customer experiences, and developing meaningful products for customers lies with the CEO. It’s leadership’s role to frame problems, identify desired outcomes, and imagine the big hairy audacious goals - in other words, to ask the great questions. These great questions can’t be outsourced or tasked down - the buck stops with the CEO. So how do CEOs and senior leadership undergo the mindset shift needed to stop the rot?


How to Be Lucky

Wed 26 October 16

Lucky people aren’t the victims of chance - they’re masters of making connections. In this workshop, we’ll guide design leaders through a few proven approaches to better frame challenges and problems their organisations face, identify desired outcomes, and imagine audacious goals. We’ll ask participants to engage in exercises meant to flex their muscles at seemingly obvious tasks: paying attention, making connections, reasoning by analogy, and opportunity spotting. Innovation doesn’t stop with asking great questions - and leaders must guide teams through a process of information gathering, synthesis and analysis that culminate in making game-changing bets.

About Farrah Bostic

Farrah created The Difference Engine to help companies make better products and marketing by talking to real customers, face to face.

Her expertise in digital strategy; technology, web, and mobile trends; and product and service design thinking ensures her clients’ brands and strategies deliver a seamless experience online and off. She has honed her expertise as an advisor to some of the world’s most respected brands, including Apple, Microsoft, Disney, Samsung and UPS. She has led innovation and strategy practices at Hall & Partners, OTX/Ipsos, and Digitas.

She is a frequent speaker on Lean approaches to research, empathetic design and use of data, and building interdisciplinary teams.