Lecture

Prof. Olaf Leu at hw.design

09–05–2012

The graphic design veteran visited Munich on 26 April and read from the second part of his autobiography. He then led a podium discussion on "the future of the annual report", giving his own angle on the topic to stimulate debate.

Olaf Leu talked about what he saw as the five significant commercial areas for financial reporting: economic conditions, performance, objective observations, subjective position and conceptual conditions. He also explained the connection between content and form using the example of tectonic plates, which can head towards each other and produce distortions but not collide.

The podium discussion, which included Susanne Stacklies from Deutsche Post DHL, Christian Finkenzeller from BMW Group and Dr. Johannes von Karczewski from Siemens, confirmed that the annual report has become a medium of reference.
As an uncontested key medium for corporate communication, it not only has to fulfil the requirements of highly varying target groups, but also to provide answers and, as a voice of the company, adopt a position with regard to content.

Answering questions on technological or social changes to a company, whether they relate to the financial crisis, economic or strategic changes, requires exceptional corporate positioning of a company in its role as a provider of products and services and as a corporate citizen.

The new online media (tablets and smartphones) can help to communicate this positioning by processing the content in real time – especially as changes occur so rapidly. The primary task within an ever diversifying media spectrum is always to get the content to the reader.

This is only possible when companies understand usage behaviour and the technology and reading devices used.

The autobiography of Olaf Leu is available exclusively from Deutscher Designer Club at cost price of €60.00 (two volumes in a slipcase) or €25.00 for one volume. Visit www.ddc.de.

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