Musicians don't think like most, and in the creative process, they don't act like most. In TWO BEATS AHEAD, Panay and Hendrix explain how musicians listen for the gaps and create moments that break patterns; repurpose what they have and create room to explore; know when to step up, step back, and leave room for others; choose the right partners to collaborate with; and make authentic connections with their audiences.

We’ll hear from co-author of TWO BEATS AHEAD, R.Michael Hendrix, Global Design Director at IDEO on insights culled from his work in music, design, and business. He’ll also talk through lessons from some of the nation's top musicians and music industry leaders about their innovative processes and products. He’ll also cover the secrets to maximizing results in a collaboration from Beyoncé and Pharrell Williams. They'll discover the importance of experimentation from musical pioneers Imogen Heap and Radiohead, and many more,more.

About the Expert

Michael Hendrix Photo

Partner and Global Director of Design,

R. Michael Hendrix is a Partner and Global Director of Design at IDEO. As a member of the senior executive team, he collaborates with the firm's studio leaders and teams to advance IDEO's creative culture and world-class design capabilities.

A natural trailblazer and collaborator, he co-founded an art school for high schoolers, a professional design curriculum for undergrads, two professional design clubs and three small businesses, the last of which, Tricycle, was recognized by Businessweek and Fortune as a thought leader for sustainable design, and purchased by Shaw Industries, a subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway, in 2017. This diversity of experience has informed his leadership roles at IDEO and his work with leading brands and organizations including Target, Converse, Tempur+Sealy, Steelcase, the DIY Network, and the Department of Homeland Security. In 2015 he served as an advisor to the White House's global entrepreneur initiative, SPARK.

His 25-year career has made him a sought after speaker, delivering keynotes at WIRED, SXSW Interactive, SXSW Music, AIGA, FUSE, HOW, Design Management Institute, Sonar+D and Moogfest. He is an Associate Professor at Berklee College of Music and a regular guest lecturer at universities including Harvard, Mass Art, RISD and his alma mater, the University of Tennessee.

As a graphic designer he has received more than 50 awards from major U.S. design associations and publications. He is an AIGA Fellow—acknowledging his contribution to raising the standards of excellence in graphic design, a Marshall Memorial Fellow, and a BMW Foundation Alumnus, both acknowledging Trans-Atlantic leadership for civic issues. He continues pursuing this interest as a board member of IDEO.org.