Generali: Wearables, IoT home devices, Tech Scouting, Spaces
DGI is one of the world most awarded design firm | Milan, Italy | San Francisco, CA | 2016-2020
One of the most diverse team I ever managed, produced the most diverse work I have ever seen on a single company.
Together with service designers I hired, we run users' research on wearables, and created products that had a strategic impact, winning various awards. We conceived brand new workshop, design thinking canvases, and created magazines too.
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Founded in 1831, Generali Group is an Italian insurance company. It is the largest in Italy and among the world's top ten largest insurance companies by net premiums and assets.
Generali Italia is the largest and richer company within the group.
Welion is their international well-being company they moved to create, following their internal strategies and fueled by the research made by my team.
Jeniot is their international IoT and innovation boutique.
A prominent Italian economic newspaper journalist involved me in a thought leadership event at Generali headquarters. A few weeks later, I meet Generali Italia CEO. He hired me to answer the following question: Can we strategically leverage wearable technologies to create a killer offering attracting the most affluent part of the not-yet insured Italian families?
Instead to follow the path of classic market research, we run extensive user research. Our design-driven approach and conversation about people's habits, motivation, and affection changed Generali's perspective on the design's role in their innovation process.
I won the client's trust. I shaped and grew the team I had, and I pushed my company to hire a Director for Service Design to extend our capabilities and follow the market need. Together with the new Director, we got a series of very innovative projects. All the directors were reported to me regarding Generali's needs, including the Product Design Director while delivering AirSafe (Generali's first IoT home product) and the Space Design Director while designing Generali's tower floor.
The internal and external political complexity was incredibly relevant, and the fact that we achieved so many successes for four years is a clear demonstration that it worked. DGI lost the grip on this account when I moved to CA.
This four-year journey's internal and external impact was highly relevant both for DGI and Generali.
When I joined DGI, I created from scratch our digital department. Generali made this team the DGI's most significant (people headcount) and valuable (revenues) team.
The decision to hire a Service Design Director and evolve the service design skills within my team into a new big squad was a great win. We multiplied the business and grew into a strategic market area.
The more significant impacts were on Generali's side:
we contributed to a significant cultural change, that was perfectly represented in their iconic workspace at the Generali's tower.
We normalized design thinking (not guru stuff, but an everyday tool)
We added the user research to the table (marketing research wasn't anymore alone)
We escorted Jeniot during the making of their first iconic IoT home device
We shaped Welion's entire service offering
We helped Generali Group to refresh their technology scouting practice
Years after the last deal together, some of Generali's top managers still involving me in private calls, internal meetings, or ask for training.
Can a small design team influence a world insurance Giant?
The big impact we is particularly visible when you compare old traditional "production and sales" oriented workplaces with the new centered spaces we designed. In particular, the idea to have a short and long term plan to evolve the space itself. We designed SPACES + TIME.
Generali's first home IoT solution was presented at Las Vegas Consumer Electronics Show (CES) with the Italian Minister of Innovation.
Re-thinking the agencies' environments with a workshop. The initial story is a deep dive into another time culture: a history lesson, a history of client behavioral changes.
Service Design is a very pragmatic discipline. Evolving the customers' user experience often means handling regulations, databases, security, etc.
Inventing an insurance newsletter and doing it well to win a design innovation award.
This picture is all about coopetition -and- the crossing between my give-back life and my professional duty.
AlertBox Magazine behind the scenes. Each article had an impact and became a strategic topic.