Posts By Blair Corcoran de Castillo

5 Tips to Make Your Documents Visually Appealing

In the government, we circulate thousands of documents each year. The purposes of these documents vary from helping people apply for services to informing the public about new regulations. But, let’s be honest. The government is not known for disseminating easy to read documents. Fortunately, that is quickly changing as agencies are realizing that to… Read more »

Exploring the Role of the Big “D” Designer in Government

A few weeks ago, I wrote a blog arguing that everyone designs. In that post, I talked about how those of us with little to no design experience are still designers (just little “d” designers), as we work to improve situations and experiences around us. Big “D” Designers, on the other hand, are those individualsRead… Read more »

Lowering the Heat: How to Manage Conflict

Conflict is a normal part of human nature, so it’s not surprising that we find it in the workplace. It’s probably even less surprising that it emerges when applying human-centered design (HCD). Just think about it – human-centered design is a very different way of working for most people. Many find its application uncomfortable inRead… Read more »

Everyone designs!

Herbert Simon once said “Everyone designs who devises courses of action aimed at changing existing situations into preferred ones.” Before hearing that statement, I had a very narrow view of design. I thought design was for creative types or artists who made shoes, furniture or cool new technology products. I didn’t realize that design encompassesRead… Read more »

Building Your Own Creative Space at Work

While there are many aspects of my detail to The Innovation Lab at the Office of Personnel Management that I enjoy, one of my favorites is access to the Lab’s space in the sub-basement of OPM’s Theodore Roosevelt Federal Building. The space is a dream for those seeking a creative and collaborative work environment. ForRead… Read more »

5 Ways Human-Centered Design Can Improve Your Work

You have probably heard the concept of human-centered design (HCD) thrown around, but you may be wondering what it’s all about. If you’re like me, you’ve probably searched for ‘human-centered design’ on the internet to learn more. In doing so, you were most likely confronted with a number of results that link to different HCDRead… Read more »

Are You Choosing Empathy?

There has been quite a bit of conversation about empathy over the past few years. Studies show its benefits in improving relationships, team dynamics and the social development of our children. At the same time, a body of research reveals that empathy often fails when needed most, like after large scale disasters and with peopleRead… Read more »