Book cover design

I got contacted by Malene Cortelius to do some proposals for a book cover design for her new book

"Workplace Revolution" – Outperform Competition through Employee Engagement.

Before starting up the design process I had a few meetings with Malene (who resides in Switzerland – So we had the meetings through Skype) I got a sneak peak of the book which included the summary and the draft for the first chapter. I read the chapter through and started sketching out my ideas on how to make the cover.

As the book is about Employee Engagement and how management in large corporations can create a winning culture by engaging their employees, my thoughts was how to visualise these ideas or the extract of the book into the cover.

I made a lot of sketches of my ideas, but ended up with 4 which could work really well

  • First idea was a hot air ballon with employees onboard -sort of taking a helicopter perspective on the environment in the companies, but also the idea of seeing your employees as in a hot air balloon which is very fragile, but also able to fly high and cover great distances.
  • The second idea was a big apple tree with one bad apple (which should symbolize the manager / or an unhappy employee) and the apples sort of are sour close to the bad apple but get's happier the further away from the bad apple.
  • Third idea was the big gigantic very corporate boss old-school boss, who got his degree at the business school in the last century and the kind of person who thinks, the company is about him and not the employees. So he is portrayed as a very big corporate suit guy with hard edges. The shadow of him is then all the faces of his employees, who are very scared of being in the slipstream of this guy and his direction of the company.
  • The last idea was to have a corporate exec management hand with expensive cufflinks playing "Connect Four" but with the piceses you play with being happy/unhappy employees - So illustrate the idea of happy/unhappy employees is just a simple game like "Connect four" for some managers and to create true employee engagement you need to go beyond that and read Malene's excelent book about how to create employee engagement.

Lucky enough Malene had a meeting in Copenhagen so I had the chance to show her the design proposals. With all four covers I created different directions also in term of typography and colours. Malene really liked the idea of the corporate hand playing "Connect Four", but also the idea of teh big corporate boss and the shadow of the employee faces. So she wanted to sleep on it before deciding. Malene then went back to Switzerland and she made a decission to go with the cover where the Corporate hand is playing "Connect Four". And she also really liked the illustration style (which was more for sketch purposes) Malene liked that it had this hand drawn feeling to it, so I started creating the artwork by illustrating the cover illustration by pencil. And then we decided on the background colour and typography I advises Malene on the pros and cons with the different graphic design choices.

So we ended up with the final design which is shown to the right. (In the image on top). Malene was/is a very happy customer - And I was delighted that I was able to nail the book cover design for Malene which sumarizes her book really well.