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Principle III. The Designer: Vision

Who are the Designers & Visionaries in your Enterprise?

As mentioned before white ball thinking is a powerful ‘human’’ centred rather than ‘systems’ centred thinking. A ball is always free, bouncing, rolling always moving in perpetual motion unlike the box which is static, rigid & fixed. White ball thinking is the polar opposite to black box thinking its components are like the designer and the visionary they are free flowing, chaotic and random they have a passion that gives them the energy to fire about like fire flies.  

The Designer is the great visionary and dreamer. Many individuals first labelled as fantasists and dreamers finally obtain the title of remarkable visionaries, inventors and thinkers. It is our visionaries that motivate people and thus steer society’s path into the future. Credible visionaries can paint pictures and images in the minds of others like great story tellers. They hypnotise and motivate their audiences like the great illusionists sewing seeds in their minds with ideas of what could be possible.

The visionary unlike the inventor needs an even greater sense of self belief and conviction for their ideas because they often have to share their vision with the world, the critics and non believers before it is ever a reality. The visionary has an impenetrable thick skin that allows them to dismiss and reject criticism and ridicule. They are masters of their emotions and are rarely thwarted by negativity or public rejection.  They have the skill to mesmerize others with their visions and dreams making their follower’s believers and contributors in a great and shared vision. Without the designer we have no vision no final destination, plan, purpose or direction.

The skill to Visualize

The skill of ‘visualization’ comes before the formation of any great ‘vision’. Visualization is the essential skill of the designer, a skill that can be embraced by everyone. The more powerful and detailed we make our visualizations the more powerful we can make our realities. Through out history every inventor, visionary, pioneer or entrepreneur possessed within them the skill to vividly picture their idea in their minds eye before it was ever translated onto paper or developed into reality. Creative visualization is a magical skill that can positively manipulate our beliefs and our brains thinking.

We all have within us the resources to create images in our own imagination whether from the resources of our visual daily references, recorded memories or the influences of others drawings, paintings or art. We simply need to give ourselves permission to be childlike again and have the freedom to be creative. Simply close your eyes and convert your thoughts into a blank canvas and begin the journey of painting or drawing your vision or idea. If we lack the experience of visualization seek out resources to stimulate your imagination whether from nature, travel, museums, and art galleries to new innovations. Any new visual stimulus will leverage your ability to think differently and more creatively. 

Our Vision

“Ones vision must be the Design: the plan, the working drawing of our intensions.”

With the skill of visualization we can then begin work on our Vision. Our Vision is equally if not more important than any verbal or written goal or affirmation because a vision or picture as the old adage says ‘is worth a thousand words’. Depending on the content of an image or picture it can make hundreds of different connections to our emotions therefore connecting more directly with our conscious and subconscious mind. With a vision one can store a single image in ones mind that we can retrieve instantly. It has the power and emotion to communicate a thousand messages from the depiction of symbolism, representation and association while simultaneously creating impulses of emotion through colour, texture and personal association. 

We must gather up all our resources and assemble a single visual depiction of that which we would describe in any affirmation or verbal goal. This may contain personal portraits of our associates, symbols of dates, single phrases or names. The choice of colour in vibrancy, contrast and intensity must reflect our intentions, emotions and vision. 

Only then can one begin to add realism to our vision by developing our vision into a dream within our imagination. By allowing our imagination to take over and adding all our sensory skills of action, movement, sound, touch, taste and smell then we can add a new realism to our vision. 

By placing ourselves within the dream and rein act our desired outcome and vision through our eyes our vision will become more tangible and real. With this in place we can use the faculties of our imagination to repeat, relive and reinforce our vision and consciousness during our day and our subconscious faculties while we sleep at night.

In our dreams our brain has greater difficulty to distinguish between fiction and reality. Consequently the brain will work efficiently and calmly to find ways of realizing your vision into reality. Because the brain cannot distinguish between degrees of fiction, be confident and bold in your hopes and dreams. Make your vision an amazing objective of desire to inspire and motivate our senses and passions. 


The mind of the designer will first listen to their instinct and intuition before testing the practicality and logic of ones ideas. The designers mind is like a miniature Theatre of the mind where a performance is repeated endlessly ever changing in detail, story line and plot until it is eventually refined and polished. The designers mind never ceases until it finds perfection in realizing their vision and dream.

Once fully satisfied they will then put pen to paper experimenting with every conceivable version of their idea or plan repeatedly drawing, sketching and remodelling. A real designer will become consumed in the perfection of ones idea and vision through revision, reengineering and redesign. The task of the designer is to be patient, persistent and never tire of finding better solutions. Only once one has eliminated all alternative conclusions will one rest. 

Only once one puts pen to paper can the Designer fully share his vision and dream with others. It is essential that we find the tools and means to vividly translate the details of our vision onto paper. The execution of our vision will be determined by the accuracy of our ability to communicate our thoughts to our associates and followers.

“God is in the detail”

The Maker  

Once one has finished putting pen to paper we can then let the functions of the Maker take over the carpenter, the builder, the seamstress, the weaver. The greatest designers and visionaries are often apprenticing makers, inventors and the ‘designer and maker or inventor’ is often one in the same individual. We must never underestimate the crucial role and function of the maker as great inventions are not the conceptions of theorists but technicians. Without the understanding and practice of a craft we lose the source of all our ideas. Without our technicians we are lost.

Take heed, have the humility to respect the valuable role of your makers because without them we do not have tangible skills and foundations to be designers, visionaries and inventors. Learn from the arrogance of past generations do not allow a single generation to lapse without protecting and maintaining the skills and expertise of your technicians. It only needs the lapse of a single generation to destroy the inherited skills of centuries and the link to the next generation of technicians, designers, visionaries and inventors.   


Strategy is the last and final stage. It is necessary that we allow the creativity of the ‘white ball’ full freedom to explore its boundaries and potential before we ever begin to discuss strategy. Once we start talking about a strategy we begin the process of inviting ‘black box’ thinking and logic into our conversations and not creativity.  Strategy must only enter our minds once we are fully satisfied with all our creative experiments and outcomes. If the mind is allowed to begin planning and strategizing too early in the creative process we steal the energy of the white ball and its creative capacity too early, limiting our potential outcomes and success.


I. The skill to Visualize

II. Our vision

III. Dream 

IV. Redesign

V. The Maker

VI. Strategy

Interested in learning more?

IBOOKS or Paperback at AMAZON

D. F. McKeever is a Scottish Author and Illustrator, an ex-entrepreneur for over 20 years with expertise in creativity, self-help and entrepreneurship.