This article is part of’s October series about creativity and design-led thinking. Click here for more.

So what’s a design-led business anyway?

According to’s parent company, Adobe: “Companies that put design at the very core of their brand are design-led. They weave design principles into everything they do—from research and strategy to creating content. They think beyond transactions and focus on beautiful experiences that build lasting and meaningful relationships with customers.”

What separates design-led businesses from the pack? The following stats below paint a clear picture of their commonalities.

1. Design-driven companies have outperformed the S&P Index by 219% over 10 years. (Source: Design Management Institute)

2. Design-led firms consciously put the customer first, with 46% of design leaders citing an emotional bond with customers as a defining characteristic of an advanced design practice. (Source: Adobe/Forrester)

3. 75% of organizations self-report that they are engaged in design thinking. (Source: Parsons New School)

4. 71% of organizations that practice design thinking report it has improved their working culture on a team level. (Source: Parsons New School)

5. Companies that foster creativity enjoy 1.5 times greater market share. (Source: Adobe)

6. 71% of companies report creating 10 times the number of assets today than just a few years ago. (Source: Adobe)

7. 69% of design-led firms perceive the innovation process to be more efficient with design thinking. (Source: Parsons New School)

8. Design-led firms test ideas with their customers, with 83% having tools and systems in place to do so. (Source: Adobe/Forrester)

9. 82% of companies believe there is a strong connection between creativity and business results. (Source: Creativity At Work)

10. In a survey where companies were analyzed for their creativity, those who ranked highly for fostering creativity were also recently awarded recognition for being a “best place to work.” (Source: Creativity At Work)

11. Despite the recent trend toward open office floor plans, 60% of creatives said they are most creative in private environments. (Source: Business News Daily)

12. 10% of the Fortune 500 have stated that design is their No. 1 priority. (Source:

13. 78% of design-led companies have defined a process for coming up with new digital customer experience ideas. (Source: Adobe)

14. 50% of design-led companies report more loyal customers as a benefit to having advanced design practices. (Source: Adobe)

15. Almost half (46%) of companies that don’t embed design in digital CX strategy reported that their digital CX is on par or weaker than competitors. (Source: Adobe)


Source of article: