Tomáš Bartl

Chief Innovation Designer

I want to be there when the things that can make the world better are being created. After graduating from University of Economics and Charles University, I joined Ogilvy. From there I went on to Direct People. In almost six years as Chief Innovation Designer I have managed dozens of projects from different industries – from banking all the way to healthcare. Currently, I am primarily leading projects, that utilize my previous work experience in an ad agency and knowledge of industries such as media, IT and healthcare. Simultaneously I am providing methodological support for other teams. I make sure that we are moving forward in what we do. Be it through learning from everyday work or bringing new approaches from the outside world.

My journey to Direct People

I spent a year in the USA when at secondary school and after returning found it hard to decide what to study – I considered IT economics, but I was also attracted to editing at the Film and TV School of the Academy of Performing Arts. Eventually Corporate Economics and Management at the University of Economics won, but as if that was not enough, I added media studies at Charles University to the mix.

I started to work as a copywriter at Ogilvy while still studying and gradually moved on to creative concepts development and then strategic planning. After 5 years I was however ready for a change. It disliked the fact that I am not creating anything, that nothing tangible is actually left behind me. Then I came across Direct People, more or less by chance. I really liked the freedom that I felt from the company. Two guys built a company from scratch and began working on some great projects for some great companies. I couldn’t resist. 🙂

Projects I have enjoyed

The projects that stuck with me the most are the ones that taught me a lot of new things. For example, looking for new business opportunities for IBM existing technologies. This resulted in a service for hospitals that is able to read and “understand” medical reports. This cut out ineffective time doctors spent on reading handwritten notes.

Thanks to a project for DencoHappel, an air-treatment technology producing company, I experienced what it is like to work on an international project. People from Germany, Austria, Britain, France, Turkey, Russia and Poland all participated in the project. The key to success was changing the way the whole team thought: we moved from the idea of innovating the air-treatment unit itself (where there was not much space for change) to setting up new related services and creating alternative business models attractive to the customers.

A few words about me

I want to be there when something that can make the world a slightly better place is created. I like combining two or more seemingly incompatible things from different fields to create something new. I also enjoy the actual implementation process and like to “get my hands dirty” with preparing prototypes as well as the final solution itself. And if I can do this with people who know what they want and are able to stand by it, then all the better.

I love reading. I often find the most inspiring books to be those that do not touch on the given topic at all, or only very marginally. I am attracted to the idea of continuing my formal education, of indulging myself in the luxury that the academic environment offers and digging deep in certain areas.

Are you interested in what we do?