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Inspiring young creatives around the world

Tey reminisces about his own start in digital & design and looks forward to sparking more interest in the field by writing a creative brief for the D&AD New Blood Awards.

Read more about: Digital | Innovation

As a teenager during the heady days of the world wide web, I was captivated by the digital form. Growing up in a small town on a tropical island, thousands of miles away from big city life, I’d spend countless after school and weekend hours geeking out on graphics forums and ogling at online entries to public design competitions. In absolute awe of the creative talent on display, I dove head–first into graphics and web design, first attempting to imitate my online heroes, and eventually mustering up the courage to submit my own entries. I had barely hit puberty and had already found my calling. I was absolutely spellbound; if it had the words ’design’ and ’competition’ in it, I was there. Poster design, photography, animation, even t–shirt design; I jumped on any excuse to use my creativity.

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Fast forward a decade later, and I can’t help but smile thinking back to those days. It feels like a lifetime since I was that teenager hunched over a computer screen teaching myself to code just so I could get that amazing idea I had for a webpage onto the screen the exact way I’d pictured it in my head. My creative purpose has matured, but that spark that drove me burns brighter than ever. Here I am, all grown up, but still wide–eyed and in awe of the art of the possible.

In the last 18 months as an experience designer at McKinsey, I’ve helped one of the world’s best–known brands reinvent itself, strategized customer offerings at one of Europe’s most innovative banks, worked with a global charity connecting people in new and exciting ways, and helped guide Fortune 500 CEOs as they bring design and engineering talent together.

None of those opportunities would have been possible if I hadn’t embarked on that journey of youthful self–discovery. When the opportunity to partner with D&AD – one of the world’s foremost creative charities – arose, it was a dream come true. This year marks the first time McKinsey will be involved with the D&AD New Blood Awards, putting forward one of 18 briefs that will be passionately crafted and tweaked, and polished by thousands of design students and creative minds.

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The Digital McKinsey brief, “Digitising a financial revolution” is close to my heart. We are in an age where technology can empower and enable those less fortunate. Our brief combines service design, user experience design, and social good, challenging young designers to combine research, storytelling, and execution to craft a product or service that bears genuine impact.

I hope we can help ignite that spark for curious kids and budding creative souls.

Want to learn more about D&AD? Click here.

Interested in a role like Tey? Click here.

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