Friday Faves is our weekly blog series highlighting a few select pieces from the REG team’s reading lists. You can catch up on past Friday Faves on the archive

How Pixar uses hyper-colors to hack your brain

Anne says: This week, I’ve been working with colour. Every time I spend time reviewing and researching colour, I’m reminded how influential it can be. Yet both the power and impact of colour are underutilised, particularly within our organisations. And I’m not referring to office furniture – who remembers what their office even looks like?! I’ve been focusing on the use of colour in online platforms like intranets and other digital workplace applications. The value colour can add on the one hand, and the distraction or unnecessary application of branding and corporate colours. As is often the case, when you’re focusing on a topic, articles start appearing that can shine light or perspective on the topic. That’s why I found this article about Pixar and how they apply colour and light to their movies fascinating!

The article describes some of the processes and use of light and colour by Pixar – how they “hack our brains”. But that’s not what really caught my attention – the statement below, which refers to how colour is “seen” by our eyes on screens, was an important reminder that screen versus paper versus movie, even interior design of rooms, all need to apply colours in different ways.

“Point is, the colors we see aren’t actually mixed from a list of available ones, like buying from a paint store. It’s a continuum of light and reflection, interpolated by the biological sensors of our eyes and the not-totally-understood think-meat just behind them.”

So while we all see colours differently, the medium and light sources have as much impact on our designs and their context needs to be taken into context.

And speaking of colour – if you remember the blue (or was it black?) dress, then take a look at these balls. How many colours do you see? (A tip: take a look at the image below, but then open the link and look at the larger image!

Image by David Novick @NovickProf

Colour can mislead us, it can distract us, it can draw attention away from reality, it can invoke emotions or reactions. The key is how we apply colour to our digital platforms to ensure we’re enhancing the user experience, not impeding it. Next time you’re reviewing your engagement levels or auditing workflows and use of your sites, why not take a moment to review how colour is impeding or promoting how the site is being used?

Read: https://www.wired.com/story/how-pixar-uses-hyper-colors-to-hack-your-brain/

This Stanford-designed system will help you navigate the workplace after COVID-19

Jakkii says: This seven-minute read is an overview of the human-centred design approach Stanford’s d.school has taken to be more intentional about cultural practices, including habits, routines, rituals, and stories as a way to “help redefine work as we move into a new normal.” I think this kind of approach is useful no matter what your workplace model looks like, but it’s particularly relevant when you’re in either hybrid or fully distributed (remote) workplaces where people are not co-located with their colleagues.

So, what does the d.school see as useful aspects of this approach? The article includes these suggestions:

  • Infuse equalizers into your meetings

  • Add care practices to your weekly team life

  • Strengthen human connection with special-interest gatherings

  • Dial emotions up and down to manage energy

  • Create mental spaces for collaboration

  • Recognize people’s loss and grief

  • Send cues for belonging

Each of these is ultimately an exercise in empathy, and there’s certainly room for each of us to be more empathetic with one another, and that’s no less true in our workplaces. Employees are whole people with lives outside of work, and while that isn’t a new concept nor something brought about by the pandemic, it has become all the more relevant since covid hit us and turned people’s lives upside down – personal and professional. We never know exactly what is going on with someone, and it never hurts to be a little more kind and to make an effort to assume the best intentions even when things go wrong. Operating in a culture that is more empathetic overall only makes these types of behaviours and attitudes easier because they have the opportunity to become habitual, even reflexive.

I’d love to hear from you about what’s working for you, your team and your organisation in navigating the current workplace and your thinking about navigating the “post-pandemic workplace” (although one could be forgiven for wondering if we’ll ever truly be “post-pandemic” again). How do they (or don’t they) align with these suggestions from the d.school? Let me know in the comments or on social media!

Read: https://www.fastcompany.com/90632723/this-stanford-designed-system-will-help-you-navigate-the-workplace-after-covid-19

Friday Fives

Hybrid workplace

Remote work and the digital workplace

Communication, collaboration, engagement, and culture

Community management, moderation and misinformation

Privacy and data

Big Tech

Social media

Extras

This is interesting: The guards caring for Chernobyl’s abandoned dogs

Things that make you go hmmm: Artificial Intelligence is misreading human emotion

Space: A bottle of French wine aged in space is expected to sell for $1 million

Podcast: How to be wrong less often

Friday playlist: RIYL Tame Impala’s The Slow Rush

Sydney Business Insights – The Future, This Week Podcast

This week: The future of crime and punishment, we discuss the high cost and low returns of punishing white collar crimes with special guest Clinton Free.

Sandra Peter (Sydney Business Insights) and Kai Riemer (Digital Disruption Research Group) meet once a week to put their own spin on news that is impacting the future of business in The Future, This Week.

Our guest this week

Professor Clinton Free

The stories this week

07:35 – Rethinking white collar crime and punishment

Listen: https://sbi.sydney.edu.au/crime-and-punishment-on-the-future-this-week/


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