Get to know our space explorers - Ann-Maria Lee

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At Afternaut, we call ourselves space explorers because we break new frontiers in design and we co-create solutions with our clients to help their businesses take flight. We’re proud to introduce you to our Afternaut explorer team, and in this interview, we speak with Ann-Maria Lee, our intern.

Not everyone knows what they want to do while they’re at school or even after graduation, so taking on an internship at Afternaut was a good way for Ann to figure out what career path she wanted to pursue. She does experiential/ innovation design at Afternaut, and conducts market trends research and analysis to understand user and business needs, as well as concept creation and ideation.

What are some of the challenges she’s experienced and how does she deal with them? Get to know Ann, what it’s like being an intern in an experience design company, and the benefits her background in communications brings to the role.

Picture of a girl in a khaki coloured top

What inspired you to apply for a job at Afternaut versus other companies?

I was greatly intrigued by their portfolio of creative projects and it made me want to learn more about the design processes and planning behind these innovations.

How do you think your background in communications is useful in this role?

I think that regardless of one's background, you can always leverage on prior knowledge to bring something new to the table and enhance each project that you work on here at Afternaut. I found that a lot of what I had studied in Communications was especially useful when crafting narratives and stories. This helped me understand how to tie ideas together and tailor the content of our projects for our relevant stakeholders.

What is the most valuable thing you’ve learned so far and why?

The most important thing that I have learnt from my time at Afternaut has been adaptivity. Because of the diverse nature and wide range of projects that we get to experience, I always have to be able to think on my toes and be prepared for any challenges that each new project can bring.

One example I can think of is when I had to help to name a product for one of our clients, Seedland. Because I was still unfamiliar with the client and didn't know how to start coming up with potential names, I had to dive in head first and go through multiple rounds of throwing out a lot of ideas and asking around for feedback and brainstorming advice.

In the end, this helped me learn more about how naming is very different when targeting a Chinese audience and now it's a lot easier to understand how to approach similar projects. I learned that products targeting Chinese customers should take into account the contextual difference and as such be easily recognisable and phonetically simpler in pronunciation.

When you think of Afternaut, what are three words that come to mind?

Innovation, Imagination and Interaction.

“Because of the diverse nature and wide range of projects that we get to experience, I always have to be able to think on my toes and be prepared for any challenges that each new project can bring.”

Sum up your internship experience in two sentences.

My experience at Afternaut has been really fruitful in exposing me to many growth opportunities! It pushes me to embrace challenges and go beyond my limits to think creatively in a grounded manner.

CONTINUE READING

What exactly does a design lead do? Using insights gathered from our design research, Sky helps to translate this data into concepts that we can bring to life. Get to know Sky, including the biggest misconception people have about his work, and what is the nicest thing a client has said about his and his team’s work.

Many projects are great in different ways and I never refer to one being the “greatest” as maybe the best has yet to come. We always challenge ourselves to do better and find new ways to solve old problems. In architecture school, we were taught to question the status quo, an important skill set that will serve designers well.

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