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Hot Studio founder Maria Giudice and her exceptional multi-disciplinary design team "make the complex beautifully clear" for web clients like eBay, Gap, and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. Maria focuses the studio's work on people-centered design to create amazing user experiences on the web and in print. See how they apply "collective intelligence" through the phases of discovery, strategy, design, and building. This installment of Creative Inspirations takes viewers inside one of the coolest design firms around.
Renee Anderson: Maria? Let me tell you about Maria. Katrina Alcorn: Maria is the best boss I have ever had. She is quirky and she is not afraid to be herself and I think her way of sort of being her authentic Maria, you know the character that she is really puts a lot of people at ease and makes them feel like they can be themselves. Maria Giudice: I think that people here really like it when I'm involved in their project but they also have a little bit of trepidation because they know I'm constantly going to push them to think further. So I'm encouraging and inspiring, hopefully. But I also am pretty demanding in terms of, you know, try to do something that hasn't been done before or are you sure that's the best way or hmm, I'm thinking you're starting to repeat yourself. I think you are going to have to throw that idea out and start over. But I say it with a smile on my face and I think ultimately they see the value in it because they can look back and say, god, I did push it further than I could go.
Henrik Olsen: Her enthusiasm is infectious because she is so excited about what's going on with web sites that that energy kind of inspires me too and what she is really good at doing of course is pushing. So when I am showing her some designs that the team has put together, she will always push it a little bit harder. Renee Anderson: I just can't imagine having somebody else for a boss. I mean she is just fabulous and I think that as well her commitment to the health of her employees. I think sometimes more than the health of her company because I don't think she sees those as two separate things. To make sure that her employees are happy and healthy and not overworked and not stressed out, recognizing the level of effort that they put in to doing amazing work.
Michael Polivka: She is fantastic. She is real genuine person. She has got a great heart. She cares about people in a way that I think is a bit unique in her situation. There's a compassionate enthusiasm that she carries through. It's a real concern. It's a genuine concern that, are the things that we are doing as a company great and are the people that we have here getting what they need and are we all sort of fueling each other and bring the best out of each other.
And I think that core of genuine concern is really... that authenticity again is really, really key. Rajan Dev: When we think about the firm and what we both bring to the table is that if I was to use a body analogy, the two of us are sort of like a left and right brain and she is really thinking about creation and inspiration and I am really thinking about methods and process and outcomes and then also kind of taking that body analogy further, she is like the heart of Hot Studio. She sets the culture, she sets the tone, it's always inspirational, it's always open.
Katrina Alcorn: I think it helps set a tone in the office to be-- I think it helps us be the kind of creative company we are, just the attitude she has. Renee Anderson: It's not very common that you encounter people running companies who would have that approach to interacting with their employees and I think we are all very lucky to have her here.
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