Partner and Executive Design Director, IDEO Europe
I’m passionate about making things tangible: addressing our clients’ most complicated business challenges in a human-centered way, so even big, systemic, strategic solutions can be experienced. As executive design director, I support our teams by translating those challenges into opportunities they can tackle through design. The global part of my role means bringing a wider perspective and inspiration to projects, and connecting the local design community to our broader network.
What you won't learn from my bio:
When I’m not designing, I build guitars.
As an IDEO partner and executive design director for IDEO Europe, Leif is passionate about finding the most impactful ways to bring human-centered brands, products, spaces and experiences successfully to market. He is happiest when collaborating with clients and colleagues to integrate innovation and meaning into the design process. Passionate about making things real and with a love of design, Leif has created strategies, comprehensive design languages, and award-winning products and services for renowned international and German companies.
Leif joined IDEO in Palo Alto in 1992, before moving to the Boston studio where he stayed for two years. Upon returning to his native Germany, he worked for Siemens Design before co-founding IDEO Munich in 2001. Together with the teams in Munich and London, Leif has been shaping and co-leading IDEO’s successful and rewarding expansion in Europe.
A frequent public speaker, Leif skillfully addresses design-related topics at design and business conferences. He has served as a guest professor and lecturer of design at the Hochschule für Gestaltung in Offenbach and Munich, Vital - The Tel Aviv Center for Design Studies, and at Parsons The New School for Design in New York. He teaches regularly at Lund University in Sweden.
Leif holds an undergraduate degree in product design from the Hochschule für Gestaltung in Schwäbisch Gmünd, and a Master of Fine Arts in 3D Design from Cranbrook Academy of Art in Michigan, which he attended as a Fulbright scholar.