Apple chief designer Jonathan Ive is the focus of an in-depth Business Week report, which examines how his award-winning design team does its work.
The report reveals that Ive runs a small team of international designers, spending his budget on the most advanced available prototyping technologies, as well as a "massive sound system" which blasts out music in the team's top-secret office at Apple headquarters in Cupertino, California.
Ive's team members include New Zealander Danny Coster, Italian Daniele De Iuliis, and German Rico Zörkendörfer. The small group are characterised as working without ego, with a deep focus on creating the best possible products.
"Its good old-fashioned camaraderie - everyone with the same aim, no egos involved," British fashion designer Paul Smith and friend of Ive told Business Week. "They have lots of dinners together, take lots of field trips. And they've turned these grey, frumpy objects called computers into desirable pieces of sculpture you'd want even if you didn't use them," he says.
"One of the hallmarks of the team I think is this sense of looking to be wrong," Ive said at an industry event last year. "It's the inquisitiveness, the sense of exploration. It's about being excited to be wrong because then you've discovered something new."
The report looks at how Ive got the inspiration for the first iMac - from a trip to a jellybean factory - and explains in depth the group's focus on the final finish of its product designs.
"Ive's team understands and respects this process of production so much that toolmakers and suppliers in Asia prefer working with them, despite the fact that Apple is a ferocious negotiator on cost. Suppliers get a jump on the future by working with Apple, since it is setting the design pace," the report explains.
The report is available here.