John Maeda wrote the following in one of his Design In Tech Briefings:
The value of design only exists when it's in relation to the other parts of a company's operations. Alone, design is a microworld of aesthetic high-fives. Integrated, design is a catalyst for interdisciplinary teaming, learning, and winning.
I refer to this quote often as it perfectly encapsulates how design as a function has to operate within the organizational context. It matches my own convictions and has resonated with any audience I shared it with.
I aim to live up to this every day.
John inspired me throughout my career. You can follow him at @johnmaeda.