This job is really for one of those ’go it alone’ consultants traipsing the corporate corridors, with a bag full of smoke and mirrors, flaunting grey hair with the promise of wisdom and experience in exchange for a blank cheque, giving the rest of us a bad name. It would be too cruel to mention names, but we all know who they are. Politics is a good solution for them. Government does not require original ideas or even a business plan. You wouldn’t need to worry about cash flow. You just have to spend it. You get paid to turn up for useless debates, implement unrealistic policies that will inevitably fail expensively, with no comebacks. And you can freely carry on being insignificant while projecting the illusion that what you do is somehow making a difference. What could be more fun?
Marksteen Adamson, Founding partner, Arthur Steen Horne Adamson
Personally, I’m not convinced the worlds of design and politics mix that naturally, it seems like such an extreme clash of cultures. James Dyson would work because of his experience of running a very successful business rather than just for his design background, but I can’t think of many other cases where this would work. I can’t imagine Gordon Brown doing a great job at Intro – although admittedly it’s hard to imagine him doing a good job anywhere at the moment.
Ian Hambleton, Partner, Studio Output
I’ve dined in his restaurants, flopped on his sofas, and been inspired by his out-of-the-(Habitat)-box thinking. It has to be Terence Conran, our very own design superhero whose Bauhaus-inspired belief that ’good design should be available to the whole community, not just to a few’, and extraordinary flair for business and visionary innovation, would make him my candidate. I’m confident he won’t be claiming expenses for lunches (or duck houses) at Pont de la Tour.
Karen Cinnamon, Creative director, Cinnamon Creative
Tough question. I can think of one person who would have the drive, conviction and necessary skill to fulfil a role in Government: Shane Walter, the founder of Onedotzero. He works incredibly hard, believes in something different, talks with confidence and conviction, and is always happy to disagree while being thoroughly charming. He has also seemed to make Onedotzero both a commercial and cultural success. I am not sure he’d want to do it, but he’d get my vote.
Matt Wade, Founder, Kin Design