Creative Leadership Toolkit: Curiosity, History, and Discovery Premium class

John Maeda, Design Partner, KPCB

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8 Videos (57m)
    • New Lesson: Listening (May 2016)

    • Introduction

    • Your Assignment

    • Curiosity

    • History

    • Discovery

    • Leadership

    • Final Thoughts


About This Class

Update: This class originally launched in 2015. In May 2016, John updated his class with a brand-new lesson on the importance of listening, inclusion, and building diverse teams. This new lesson is now at the top of the video playlist.



Get inside the mind of John Maeda. His leadership at the Rhode Island School of Design, MIT Media Lab, and KPCB has inspired the world to dream bigger and better about ways to bridge design, technology, and art. Now, he brings that leadership to Skillshare.

In this 60-minute adventure, learn how to seek, shape, and achieve a truly creative career. No gimmicks, no tricks, just real wisdom. Go behind-the-scenes with John as he explores curiosity, why history is the heart of innovation, how to instigate discovery, and the core of creative leadership.

The class journeys through examples from John's storied career, includes a project to put the lessons into action, and features exclusive interviews with a dozen creative leaders, including: Behance Founder Scott Belsky, Design Within Reach Founder Rob Forbes, Airbnb Founder Joe Gebbia, and Cooper Hewitt Curatorial Director Cara McCarty.

Who is this class for? Designers seeking new paths, enthusiasts discovering their creative identity, entrepreneurs eager to start a new type of company, and so many more.

510 of 534 students recommendSee All

Excellent Class!!!! It's eye opening. It's the perfect class for us who have none or only one or two mentors.
A year ago I ran into a design block and have been uncertain how to move past it. In my search for understanding, I printed out this quote and hung it on my wall, " Traveler, there is no path. The path must be forged as you walk." The ideas in this course are presented in such a way that for the first time, I'm able to imagine what "forging that path" might look like through a lens of creative leadership. I'm inspired to investigate ways I can move from craftsperson/maker/artist to person who creates design teams and opens doors to ideas that are bigger than me. Leading, I've learned, is an act of weaving history, curiosity, and self determination into an opportunity that opens doors for others. This course has inspired me. It will inspire and challenge you too. Watch it!
Great class, John has a great mind:)
Greg Osborne

Design Thinker





John Maeda

Design Partner, KPCB

John Maeda joined Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers in 2013 as Design Partner, where he works within KPCB’s ProductWorks program helping entrepreneurs and portfolio companies to build design into their company cultures. He served as the 16th president of Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) from 2008 through 2013. During his tenure, RISD saw increased applications, fundraising, and career placements. Prior to RISD, John spent 13 years at the MIT Media Lab as a professor and head of research. There he also led the Aesthetics and Computation research group, which pioneered new kinds of human expression on the web. His career bridging the intersections of graphic design, computer science, art, education, and leadership earned him the distinction of being named one of the 75 most influential people of the 21st century by Esquire.

Outside of KPCB, John chairs the eBay Design Advisory Council, serves on the boards of the wireless hi-fi company Sonos and the advertising agency Wieden+Kennedy, and is a member of the TED Brain Trust. His books include The Laws of Simplicity, Creative Code, andRedesigning Leadership, in which he expands on his Twitter feed at @johnmaeda, TIMEMagazine’s 140 Best Twitter Feeds. He has received a variety of international awards for his creative work, including induction to the Art Director's Club Hall of Fame and the White House's National Design Award.

John earned a B.S. and M.S. degree in computer science and electrical engineering from MIT, as well as an M.B.A. from Arizona State University. He also holds a Ph.D. in design science from the University of Tsukuba Institute of Art and Design in Japan.