Biomimicry - lizard on leaf

As a business owner or operator, do you often need to:

  1. Gain a new perspective on a problem you face?
  2. Discover better and more sustainable ways to do things?
  3. Refine a process or improve team dynamics?

Nature’s surprising role

The discipline of studying nature's designs and applying those lessons to solve problems is known as biomimicry. For example, you've probably heard that Velcro was inspired by an observation of burrs sticking to dog's fur and clothing of inventor George de Mastral.

As a web designer, I’m inspired daily by shapes and colors I see outside my door. Even unintentional encounters with nature end up shaping my thoughts and work as a creative designer.

We recently started asking a few questions of our own to find out what nature can teach us about web design. That led us down this fascinating path of inquiry into the field of biomimicry. We were so inspired that we’d like to share some of what we found with you.

Can nature help us get through tough times?

Consider some of the ways that nature operates:

  • The power of attraction
  • Working smarter not harder
  • The whole is greater than the sum of the parts
  • Applying symbiosis
  • Waiting out hard times
  • Avoiding expensive materials
  • Leveraging free energy

“We live in a competent universe…surrounded by genius”

Before we get too deep into the subject, we’d like to share this inspiring TED talk from Janine Benyus, a pioneer in the field of biomimicry. She is the co-founder and president of Biomimicry 3.8. They've developed the project asknature.org - a free website full of biological designs and strategies that allows you to ask the question, "How would nature X?" ...X being anything from desalinate water to create lightweight but strong structures.

We’ll share more of our insights in the weeks to come. In the meantime, learn more about applying nature’s strategies in the ideas listed above to your business systems in this slideshow from greenbiz.com. Then go out and take in nature's designs and processes – and let us know how it influences you!