03 March 2022

Meet Nick Sabulis, one of our technologically-minded designers

Combining his interest in technology with his passion for sustainable solutions, Nick Sabulis is a creative member of our design team. Equipped with industry experiences and enthusiasm for human-centred research, this Meanjin-based designer approaches projects through a social and analytic lens. Nick’s collaborative and innovative processes are showcased as he designs across a multitude of industries with The Growth Drivers.

Born in Eora Country (Sydney) and moving to Meanjin (Brisbane) at a young age, Nick was raised amongst vibrant cityscapes. Citing a love for the atmosphere and noise, he appreciates the colour and bustle of city life.

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Upon leaving school, Nick jumped straight into a Diploma of Graphic Design followed by a Bachelor of Design - Industrial Design (1st Class Honours) at the Queensland University of Technology. Throughout university, Nick co-founded a startup called Cornerstone Robotics. This company focussed on social robotics, playing in a space dictated by human interactions and social behaviours for a charity collection context. From this endeavour, Nick realised the saturation of technically-focused robot development and the need for ethic-centred design in the space.

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Not long after graduation, Nick left for Munich to work with BMW group in robotics. Reflecting on the move as exciting and simultaneously challenging, Nick worked as an Industrial Designer, learning how to design in collaboration with complex systems, manufacturing and engineering processes. Pairing excellently with his prior research, Nick was engaged in Logistics Robotics projects where his enthusiasm and intrigue for design within the space was further sparked. Nick recounts a personal motivation to provide value through design amongst a diverse team of engineers, spurring a reflection on the real-world, innovative nature of his work. Notably, ​​during his time with the BMW group, the logistics robotics team won the Logistik-Preis, a leading annual German logistics award for its ‘Logistics Next’ project, in which Nick played a part in the application process.

Returning to Australia just as the COVID 19 pandemic was actualising, and wanting to steer his career further towards a future-focused design practice, Nick was looking for a professional change of pace. And, aiming to align his values of sustainability and waste reduction with his work, he also wanted to avoid a traditional industrial design path.

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In early 2021, Nick started working with The Growth Drivers and was thrilled to be welcomed into a team that cultivated his interest in technology, the environment and business sustainability. Now, as a hardworking addition to the team, Nick finds great professional inspiration working on human-centred, solutions-based design projects.

As a curious researcher, he particularly enjoys the back-end exploration processes of design. Whether that encompasses conducting interviews, planning engagements, synthesising data, collating information or visual communication, Nick sees the value in intentional, openly-communicated learning. One of his favourite aspects of working with The Growth Drivers is the ample opportunity to work across a broad diversity of industries, where he can uncover nuances, gain expertise and undertake hands-on research. Not only has Nick acquired deep knowledge bases in a wide array of fields, he has also learnt a lot about the learning process itself.

Notably, Nick reflects on taking a leadership and delivery role through his last engagement project as a memorable experience, synthisising data and co-designing stakeholder-centric outputs with clients. Gaining insights and an active interest in new fields, as well as working with a team to design innovative industry solutions, embodies so much of what Nick loves about his work.

Fostering transparency, open communication and support within teams, Nick appreciates that the culture at The Growth Drivers encourages learning. Despite starting his position during a global pandemic, he has found the process of remote interactions with both his co-workers and clients to be engaging. In his downtime, Nick also finds a creative outlet in painting and art.

In a world where sustainable change has never been more vital, forward-thinking designers like Nick are crucial to crafting solutions that combine both the social and the data. And, as he continues to investigate, learn and collaborate with those around him, we can’t wait to see what Nick comes up with next.

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