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Tuesday, May 21, 2024

The executive vice president of FedEx Corporation spoke to a crowd of about 150 students who were eager to learn how to design their own future on Monday.

Robert Carter, a UF alumnus and chief information officer for FedEx, opened his talk in the Reitz Union Cinema with the technological era and designs in global industries.  

“Dominant design is now something that entrepreneurs are making huge investments in because you can get disproportional payback from making the best goods and services,” he said.  

Carter gave examples of past and present designs but talked at length about Uber, a rideshare application that links drivers to people in need of rides.

“Uber didn’t invent a whole lot of services out there,” he said. “They just basically said ‘Look, there are geographical systems, social systems, ways that I can connect them and probably somebody out there that needs a ride.’”

Kevin Prescott, a 21-year-old UF business management and telecommunication junior, said Carter’s talk on dominant designs and how to become a dominant business within the business world was insightful.

“Rob Carter came in guns blazing,” Prescott said.

During the Q-and-A session, Carter was asked how one could predict and build a dominant design.

“You never get it right. You just try to be directionally correct and less wrong as you go forward,” Carter said. 

[A version of this story ran on page 1 on 11/18/2014]

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