October 23, 2017
Alex Kretena recently was attributed to this quote:
“Bartenders are fed up with the rapid purchase cycle: buy, use, discard, repeat, the new generation wants products with sustainability and purpose."
We call this the Product Paradox.
Since modern means of manufacturing evolved, deliberate obsolescence/product failure was inbuilt into all design to encourage on-going product consumption..meaning breakage, wastage, fatigue.
The result of hidden product design failure: customers having to buy more.
Over the last 75 years it’s been generally accepted that product failure was just a normal part of life, greeted with an accepting shrug of the shoulders.
Aided and abetted by oblivious customers, lining up to rebuy what they’d just bought.
So why then would any right thinking manufacturer design or produce anything better when customers agreed to pay less for progressively worse products?
Überbartools founders by Michael Silvers and Sam Tam, in the early part of this century conceived the guiding principles of the Company, built around 21st century design innovation with quality and sustainability a key to unlock the ground hog day of the Product Paradox.
Ironically bar tool technology seemed to be forever locked into a vortex of failed prohibition inspired design, creating the space for the: buy, use, discard and replace paradigm to exist.
Today’s Millennials think of resources in terms of being limited and therefore requiring careful thought based on the sound principles of sustainability, ergonomics, comfort, speed and efficiency.
The rise of premiumisation has ushered in a new age of design re-thinking where, quality, sustainability and the elevation of craftsmanship are heralded, eschewing the ethics associated with the Product Paradox.
July 25, 2016
Recently I went to a diner for lunch, the traditional square napkin holder was on the table, dispensing single square napkins.
By the end of the meal l'd unintentionally used 4 napkins, and felt a little embarrassed.
The question: did l make far too much mess?
After the initial guilt trip, some semblance of logic kicked in: one hand I thought, who cares how many napkins l used they’re cheap!
On the other hand I thought isn’t there a financial cost and environmental impact on what had been consumed/used/ wasted.
Ok, the average person isn’t going to be concerned with my concerns, however on further reflection, who's really to blame for my over-consumption: me or the diner’s manager?
Yes l ordered a messy burger and the napkins provided were too small, made of wafer thin paper and not very thirsty.
The question: would l have used as less paper if the napkins were thicker and of a higher quality?
Bingo...the answer in one: management presumably wanted to save money buying in napkins. Napkins are a consumable, rarely thought of, yet part of a customer experience.
Management strives to reduce costs and will not consider consequences, as there’s only one result considered, save money!
By opting for the cheapest napkin, the diner’s got the job done , but at what extra cost in terms of purchase quantity, extra time and effort needed to clean and dispose of more mess.
On face value who'd argue with the righteousness of saving a buck yet in practical terms using 2, 3 or 4 times the necessary amount of paper will cost far more than having purchased a higher grade quality napkin in the first place.
The point: a failure to properly invest, ends up costing more when the cheapest option tends not to be the best at all, requiring more time, effort and usage to get the job done.
So isn't this a case of too little costing far too much.
What do you think!