He knows when a problem requires slower, iterative approaches and when it needs fast disruption.
MIT, Cognitive Science; Carnegie Mellon, Human-Computer Interaction, Tepper School of Business.
Alex Wilcox Cheek is an entrepreneur and designer in one: he co-founded Macromicro, Classroom Salon, and Skale, and holds patents in data visualization, social currency, and online learning. For ten years, he was a Carnegie Mellon professor in Design, Business, and Information Systems.
He is a classically-trained designer and has led teams from visioning to strategy and transformation.
Carnegie Mellon, Design and English.
We blend our outsider’s perspective with research insight to be candid about your roadblocks, strategic shortfalls, or the practices that hinder innovation. A lot of times, you have to disrupt yourself before you can up-end a market.
Inventing the future isn’t done solely through numbers and analytics. We believe in the human process of discourse, debate, and alignment. Our approaches are a systematic way to frame human ecologies and wicked problems that don’t make it into a spreadsheet. Then we act on them critically and collectively.
Problems of business, technology, and human nature are complex. Simplification has its risks: you can lose resolution, the social dimension, or the interconnections. Our heuristics clarify the complexity without losing sight of what matters.
Blue sky. Focus groups. Market reports. Cool. Unfortunately, these approaches provide generalized guidance, short term solutions, or direction that leads into corners. They show us what doesn’t work. We test ideas through experimentation, nudging systems from all sides. This helps our teams learn fast, align to a clear direction, and get to more sound solutions faster.
Innovation is full of incomplete information and insufficient data, but decisions still need to be made. We help taking necessary risks because no client can simply stick with the status-quo. We help fill information gaps, work off hunches, plan strategically, and move forward with confidence.
We seek middle-way outcomes that balance business goals and stakeholder needs. Too much emphasis in either direction leads to being stuck with “the way things have always been done” or risk too great to assume. Great outcomes balance both sides.