reproducing a line of vintage clothing in the heartland I can’t help but marvel and relate to
this story of entrepreneurial reinvention that is so distinctively, positively American and
Figure 1: Steven Tatar’s book cover The Ohio Knitting Mills Knitting Book (2010)
Team Building and Fostering the Creative Process
As a freelancer, you want to work for someone like Steven because he creates an
innovative and inspirational environment that values your creative contribution. In
brainstorming sessions with a team, he is energetically wielding colorful markers and writing
hieroglyphics that playfully show linkages and connections while diagramming potential
creative strategies. He’s the cool, smart kid that everyone wants to sit next to at lunch, but
he doesn’t know it and that’s his charm.
Steven discusses his teambuilding process, “I know how to do discovery and create a
culture and process of inquiry that both articulates opportunities 
and secondarily is able to
make visible customer problem solving. That’s not necessarily dependent on being a Web
expert. That’s a different type of design process. That’s what I learned at American
Greetings. . . For me, it’s about being intuitive and about being empathetic, compassionate
and ironically when I was younger I was in psychoanalysis at the insistence of my parents.
It did train me to understand and have an empathetic understanding of the human
condition and understanding of why people behave the way they behave. Organizations
as far as I’m concerned are just big humans. They’re multi-headed individuals but they’re
humanistic beings organisms all these cells but they behave as a human psyche.”
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