steve diller

Chief Executive Officer

For the last 30 years, I’ve helped clients anticipate what their customers want, so they can meet them in the future with the experiences and relationships they desire. I’ve been an owner of a film production company, a partner and head of experience design at Cheskin (a ground-breaking innovation firm), VP of Brand Strategy at Added Value (WPP), and a founding professor of the Design Strategy MBA program at CCA. Over the years, I've found people increasingly mysterious, with ever-changing sensibilities as cultures and economies evolve. Delving into what they're becoming, and what it means for the companies that serve them, remains as fascinating and stimulating as when I started down this path decades ago.

Check out Steve's new book on relationship value, Blind Spot.

salvador acevedo

Vice President of Culture Strategy

I am deeply interested in the commonalities that connect people and communities to their cultural identities, and apply these insights to develop strategies that are beyond multicultural -- instead, they are truly intercultural. For over 20 years, I’ve been a consultant, executive, and researcher, helping to link the social capital of organizations with business opportunities for growth. Being bilingual and bicultural gives me the ability to more easily recognize the common ground for successful innovation solutions. Nothing beats that moment when I'm interviewing a person and their eyes light up because they have a brilliant answer to one of my questions. That moment usually drives the innovation process later on.

Is the new engagement model intercultural? Here's what Sal's thinking about.

christie mcallister

Vice President of Business Strategy

I live at the intersection where business metrics and analytics meet human behaviors and emotions. To accomplish the growth they’re seeking, it’s important for companies to understand customers with the right balance of qualitative and quantitative capabilities. I started my career in banking and investment advisory services, specializing in currencies and derivatives for 7 years. Over the past 8 years, I’ve been a financial models and business analytics guru for design consultancies, including Frog Design and Hot Studio. I earned a Bachelors from U.C. Berkeley's Haas School of Business and MBA from CCA's Design Strategy program. Business models don’t exist in a vacuum - they’re run by people and people are run by emotions. Understanding what motivates them is the most important thing we can do.

Christie's been reading all about automated vehicles lately.

verna bhargava

Vice President of Design Strategy

Great design is visual sociology, and I advise companies on how to synthesize insights and bring concepts to life in a compelling, meaningful story. Over the past 10 years, I’ve led the creative team at Lux Design, consulted on brand and design at Sequence, managed advertising and brand marketing at Coca-Cola, and coordinated product operations at Google. During my MFA Design and MBA in Design Strategy at CCA, I explored the unique language that’s created when design principles weave together with business strategy. We must go beyond making “the thing” and focus on how to make it meaningful, supportive, seamless, approachable...the options are endless and ambitious. But it begins with being entranced by people: the things we do, why we do them, how we react to the world around us, and how quickly it all evolves.

Verna's mulling over creativity in business and leadership. Currently reading: Creativity, Inc.

jonjozef hadley

Vice President of Strategic Foresight

I help businesses proactively anticipate and capitalize on the future. I have 15 years of diversified experience across entertainment and marketing, and my “how might we” perspective fuels companies to understand, design, and then commercialize what's next. As an executive and consultant, I’ve developed and overseen strategies for a broad spectrum of clients and initiatives that include American Idol, Kellogg’s, Warner Brothers, Sprite, and FuseProject. I have a BFA from Ithaca College in Media Theory and Performing Arts, and an MBA in Strategic Foresight from CCA’s’ Design Strategy program. Design is relatively simple -- it's about envisioning an improved future state. As we look forward to possible and preferred outcomes, it’s critical to explore the implications of human activities and decision making. This is how we’ll ensure the resiliency and sustainability of our designs.

JJ talks about how to anticipate the future through innovation strategy

5 Third Street, Suite 925
San Francisco, CA 94103