James F Caruso

James F Caruso
Advanced Design & Ideation
Newell Brands

Jim Caruso has 30 years’ experience in design management and as an individual contributor in both consulting and corporate design groups. He was instrumental in building the Motorola Consumer Experience Design group (CXD) and was global head of industrial design during the formative years of designing the industry—defining RAZR and PEBL phones, among others.

In Advanced Design and Ideation (ADI) at Newell, he helps the design and brand teams broaden the context of design to consider trends, technology and the user—to emphasize design for the experience. The ADI team is responsible for stimulating creative changes that will improve how the Newell global design teams work.

From these efforts and strong leadership support, the team has synthesized key approaches to getting into “flow” in the studios and the broader shift of emphasis on “deep work” as a working methodology.

Deep Work

When you do something you love, an hour seems like five minutes. This is the flow of the creative process which enables insight and can be nurtured and improved by emphasizing a deep work model. In a challenging growth environment and need for creative capacity, we have investigated methods to become more productive versions of ourselves.

For design managers, this means creating and defending the team to facilitate deep work while eliminating distractions. For design makers, this means focus—sanctuary rooms, mock ups and exploration of themes to trigger the best and most meaningful ideas.

This does not mean disconnecting from the critical critiques and collaboration with business and engineering teams—merely structuring it. James Caruso shows how Newell Brands has synthesized approaches and pragmatic plans to emphasize deep work and flow in the global design studios.