Gerhard Vorster is the Patron of Good Design Australia and Managing Director of Quidni Advisory, a boutique strategy advisory firm.
Working directly with boards and senior leaders, Gerhard guides businesses to reposition them in pragmatic yet unexpected ways. Gerhard’s commitment to continuous learning and innovation is reflected in his close affiliation with RMIT College of Business, Good Design Australia and several national and international initiatives.
Previously, Gerhard was the Chief Strategy Officer for Deloitte Australia and Asia-Pacific – a position he held for five years. Gerhard was a key strategist and executive in designing and implementing the Deloitte Australia growth story since 2003.
Prior to this, Gerhard was the Managing Partner (Consulting) for the South African, East Asian, Australian and Asia-Pacific practice regions. He has broad sector experience in the areas of: professional services, banking and securities, automotive, innovation, mining, oil and gas, telecommunications and media. In addition to completing several executive education programs at top tier business schools globally, Gerhard is trained as a professional Civil Engineer, holds a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering at the University of Pretoria and a Masters of Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Potchefstroom (Cum Laude).
The need to elevate design has never been as profound as right now.
We are seeing some telling behaviours that reflect inherent anxiety and disillusionment – dissatisfaction with policies and governments, dissatisfaction with services and service standards, the unfairness of inequalities and the fear of economic uncertainty as well as terror.
These behaviours are experienced in many ways around the world and require a new way of looking at what we have and what we create – with a focus on design. We have created everything we have – we now have to rethink it to create a new equilibrium.
This will require an accelerated elevation of the impact of design:
DESIGN of policies that create an environment of fairness and inclusive growth;
DESIGN of the communications around such policies to shift away from empty rhetoric or negative obstruction to realistic and tangible excitement;
DESIGN of a system that enables innovation and entrepreneurship• DESIGN of companies and entities that work together in new ways, that capitalise on each other’s strengths is deliberate ways and create vibrancy in the economy that encourages people to try new things;
And yes, the continuous focus on DESIGN of better products, services and experiences – but not only a focus on these!
At Good Design Australia we accept the responsibility to play a role in the above and we will do it with passion.
But as proud as we are about the movement we have inspired and created through our Good Design Awards initiative, as concerned are we that design is not understood or embraced at a broader and higher level.
It should be our aspiration that Australia has a disproportionate global status as a nation of design – the same way for example that Israel has a disproportionate status as a start-up nation.
This is OUR time, but we have to DESIGN it. It is time to elevate design in a visible and tangible way.
Patron Emeritus, Good Design Australia