Business acumen meets design thinking

Change is hard

For the past decade, businesses have been going through an unprecedented amount of change. They’ve tackled transformation efforts so they can do more, faster; realigned business strategies in the name of customer centricity; and heavily invested in culture so they can win the race for talent.

To help with the changes, businesses bring in management consultants to solve business problems–and marketing agencies to solve customer problems. But who can businesses turn to when customer problems are business problems? The big business consultancies are trying to answer this through acquisition of innovation and marketing firms, but it’s failing. Like mismatched blood types–business, innovation, and marketing may share the same goal but they’re diametrically opposed in their culture and approach. It’s built into their DNA.

We found the common ground

Business problems and customer problems have one foundational thing in common–they’re both people problems. And that’s what we do. Four leaders in business, design, ux, and program management came together with a mission to put people at the heart of business. So whether we are reorganizing internal processes to help business move faster or standing up a new brand that connects with customers on a deeper level, we’re solving for the needs of people with an eye towards business growth. Design Thinking and business acumen are baked into our DNA. It’s what makes us special. It’s the Carter Way.

Steffan Antonas,
Head of Business Design
Partner
James Cho,
Head of Design
Partner
Allie Lysak,
Head of Program Management
Partner
Ryan Mulloy,
Head of Experience Strategy
Partner

Our mission is to put people at the heart of business

"This notion of a conscious and long-term approach to value creation — when put into proper application — serves long-term shareholders extraordinarily well and has the capacity to favorably reshape the public’s perception of corporate America." Ron Shaich
Founder, Chairman & CEO of Panera Bread

We believe that business growth and doing the right thing aren’t mutually exclusive. We would even say that growth and doing the right thing (especially when customers aren’t looking) are the new benchmark. This perspective isn’t unique to us–today’s breakout brands get it too. When businesses balance the needs of their quarterly goals alongside the long-term needs of their employees, customers, and even the community–they’ll gain their sustainble competitive advantage.

We may have our head in the clouds, but we also have our feet on the ground. We are–and always will be–an external consulting agency. As such, we know corporations aren’t going to invite us in to change the trajectory of shareholder value. But, for those organizations that are looking to put people at the heart of their business and need the help, we’re here to help you succeed.

Putting our formula to work

We were founded in summer of 2016. Since then we’ve been working with some of Boston’s best businesses to bring the needs of people closer to our clients. We worked with Panera’s cafe managers to launch delivery services. We helped establish the digital excellence practice at Biogen–a global leader in pharma. And we helped Dunkin’–New England’s most iconic brand–rebrand mobile commerce. Along the way, we learned a lot about what it means to truly combine business, design, and delivery excellence into the core of our DNA. The result was a mix of talent you can’t find anywhere else...

Human-Centered Business Consultants

We don't see organizations as a mix of boxes and arrows split over a hundred-page Powerpoint. Rather, we see organizations as a series of complex relationships between people that are working towards a common goal...and our work reflects that.

Business-Minded Designers

We've stripped away the theater and ego of traditional innovation firms to create a practical Design Thinking methodology. The result has been a design capability that is dedicated to finding the right balance between the needs of consumers, business, and the community.

A Focus on Delivery Excellence

We've elevated the role of program management at CE+Co. Our ability to work with the highest levels of leadership and bring ideas from inception to pilot requires a level of rigor and planning that only senior program managers can deliver.

The rules we play by

We’re in this together

We’re always going to be more successful when we break down the barriers of our team vs. the your team. We like to spend a lot of time in your halls understanding your people and your business so we can have better empathy for the challenges your facing.

Small, senior teams

We often describe ourselves as a start-up team for hire. We’re all senior and we’re all hands on. This helps our cross-functional team of consultants, designers, and program managers develop ideas quickly.

Less theater, more making

We replace highly-produced presentations with showing work in progress frequently. The result is a faster process, with less risk, and move involvement from our clients.

Thinking of ideas are great; launching them is better

It's not enough for us to invent the idea, slide it across the table, and walk away. It’s why we measure ourselves on the work we launch–not the ideas that feed our egos.

Our Path Forward

Right now, we’re a start-up. Our model is built on a small, senior team–each with their own storied background in big business, agency life, and million dollar transformation efforts. We’re also doing well. But we’re not content in just doing well. Our goal is to make a meaningful change in the world, and–for us–that path runs through business. If we can help businesses that put people first (whether motivated by altruistic or commercial reasons), we can restore consumer trust with corporate America, protect worker rights, and create consumer experiences that are meaningful.