cropped-image_022“I am Marion Gillet, a Design Management Consultant.” Usually when I say this at parties or to anyone I meet I get:

  • a slightly confused smile
  • no answer
  • “design, what sort of design?”

and therefore I have to explain myself the best I can:

“I work with small design companies and assist them as they take products to market or grow their business.” or

“I provide marketing and sales services to design businesses”

And that gets me:

  • a slightly confused smile
  • no answer
  • “and what sort of products or designs”

This blog is NOT about explaining what I do, but is a place to share my knowledge and thoughts on the business of design. I believe that design is a great force if well used in any industry, it’s just not used at its full potential. I also believe designers, creative professionals and inventors must get better at understanding business in general if they want to be understood by other businesses and become more successful.

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Ferries don’t rank high on the list of alternative desk-spot for the (creative) entrepreneur. I like to catch up with work when traveling on my own by train. Whatever the circumstances flying is never a great travel experience for me. I find it’s the epitome of the modern world: being strapped to a small seat whilst being distracted either by other travelers or the airline crew, that make sure you know what you pay for. I like when traveling is fairly slow, affordable and with an air of luxury. This post is about working while traveling on a ferry: low-tech, slow and quiet.

What would I do with more than five hours – uninterrupted – to myself spent somewhere not great for phone calls, meetings? Plenty of time catch up with some in-depth work, planning, reading and writing. I decided to travel light: a notepad, a pen and smart phone on the quiet sea. The free WiFi on board is good enough for a spot of emails and social media. Ironically I spent most of my time on airplane mode.

I first worked in the quiet lounge, a space for naps, silence and reading, some writing there seemed appropriate. The outside decks is windswept and sunny in places so great to sit, think and read.

One is free to circulate between outdoor and indoor areas over two or three decks. With no seat or berth booked I could find somewhere quiet to sit for two hours or more, as well walk and wonder. I saw many bags and coats left in seats in lieu of official reservation, their owners unafraid to leave their luggage unattended.

Working on sea

To beat the queues I opted for a cold but tasty lunch and found the high tables offering great views and plenty of space. Past 12.30pm with the noise levels going up, I headed for the then deserted bar area. This is where I found my afternoon desk amongst the small round tables and padded swivel armchairs, with a view on the waves.

Ferry desk

So not brilliant if you’re prone to seasickness, and luckily I have not experienced a rough sea yet. I actually enjoyed having sea legs a week after coming to port.

Ferries are never crowded. They feel like they are designed to offer a great comfort and the possibility to take time, get bored and be creative.


 

Things to pack beside your work attire: a water/wind-proof jacket, sun cream, the right power adaptor, earphones or earplugs for optimum isolation.

 

 

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