UX Research | Design | Strategy

Design for Growth

Rethinking the Business of Advertising



Guido Ulloa y Asociados is an experienced advertising agency in Cartagena, Colombia.  In the past ten years they have grown from being a small company producing ads, to a national agency focused on strategic advertising. They were known as an innovative leader in their field but also as an organization lacking a clear creative process, creative culture, or environment that fostered innovation.  The core of this project was helping them to uncover their needs and strengths and to come up with key steps to foster innovation and creativity inside the organization.


Implementing Design Thinking methodology, I organized different playful workshops and activities focusing on the concept of less talking, more doing.  All company employees participated actively in the creation of a new strategy map, which included a new organizational structure (more appropriate to the creative work they do), recommendations on the design process, and advice on work conditions to foster a creative culture.

Design Process

In my role of consultant I was in charge of evaluating current workflows, and suggesting improvements to the design process. I helped create a design model process for the agency based on what we learned from interviews with team members and clients, and the process sketches the team presented in one of the workshops. I compiled this data in a diagram below that explains the design process and its application. This is used internally to remind employees of the process that a project must go through in order to obtain high-quality and on time results.

Secret formula

In order to be successful with the process, it was important to establish core values for this Reimagined Guido Ulloa & Asociados. Values aligned with requirements from clients, the needs from the internal users, and the new design process. In a brainstorming session, the creative team and the rest of the staff shared their opinions on which ones should be the core values for the agency. This session helped to decide what the name of this redesigned company should be. Below is the diagram result of the session which was used to develop the brand Guido Ulloa (new name) and serves as a roadmap for future endeavors.


Hierarchy and Organization Structure.

As the conversations with the creative team continued, I found a pattern that was affecting the efficiency of the team. The organization was extremely dependent on the Director to make not only the financial decisions, but also the creative ones.  After studying the current roles and the people behind every task in the company, I developed a rough prototype of a new organizational structure chart, as pictured below, where I included the current roles and added some of my suggestions for new members that would fill the gaps discovered in the process.