Balance and Moen Win Design Awards for GX Series Waste Disposals

Balance and Moen are pleased to announce two new awards for excellence in design.

The Moen GX Series of waste disposals has been awarded the 2016 Good Design Award from the Chicago Athenaeum, and been named a Finalist in the 2016 Spark Design Awards competition.

“These awards reinforce the power of our client collaboration – and this is something Balance has prided itself on for many years.” says René Polin, President & Founder of Balance.

balance moen awards

Jumpstart's National Small Business Week Spotlight: René Polin and Balance

National Small Business Week is now in its 53rd year, and Jumpstart, Inc. is taking the time to profile a group of small businesses in its network.

As a 'scaleup,' an established small business that has made it through the difficult startup stage and is now looking toward continued growth, Balance has a story that resonates with entrepreneurs and other startups.

Founder, René Polin is interviewed and talks about why he started Balance, its growth, its challenges, and its future.

You can read the interview here

Balance Selected to Participate in Stanford Latino Entrepreneur Leaders Program '16

The Stanford Latino Entrepreneur Leaders Program has selected Balance as one of only 80 companies nationwide to be a 2016 Participant for the elite 6 week program focused on scaling excellence!

About the Stanford Latino Entrepreneur Leaders Program:

"SLELP is a highly immersive six-week program that provides business owners with valuable education, an enhanced network, personal mentorship & better understanding in accessing capital resources to grow their businesses!"

"At the center is a six week online course on scaling businesses-- "Scaling for Excellence", developed by Stanford professors Huggy Rao and Bob Sutton. The customized curriculum includes videos of successful Latino entrepreneurs as well as weekly live webinars on finance and other critical topics. In addition, we provide support to entrepreneurs with mentors and connections to capital resources."

Says René Polin, President & Founder of Balance, Inc:  "This is an incredible opportunity for our Cleveland firm to connect with and learn from some of the great minds out west."

 

Balance, Inc. Chosen as Exclusive Incubation Partner for BGSU Hatch Program

Balance has been chosen as the exclusive incubation partner to BGSU's Shark Tank-like event called The Hatch. This is the first year the university has decided to bring in a professional firm as part of this program.

The students (called 'Hatchlings') will be pitching their business ideas to BGSU Alumni investors (called 'Falcons'). This summer, in their Cleveland offices, Balance will incubate four businesses that succeed in getting this first round of investment.

To find out more here:

Balance, Inc.'s Jonathan Morgan to speak at World IA Day 2016

Jonathan Morgan, Balance's Director of Emerging Experiences, will be speaking at the inaugural World IA Day in Pittsburgh, PA. on Saturday, February 20, 2016. The day will be devoted to discussion, learning, and networking around information architecture.

His talk is entitled: 'People, Product, Place: The IA of Relationships between the Physical & Digital World' and will focus on the convergence of the physical and digital product spaces.

Jonathan has nearly 20 years of experience in providing unique, technology-driven solutions that creatively deliver on the goals and needs of clients and their end-users. He speaks nationally on topics related to the physical/digital convergence of products and has had his work published.

“My primary focus is on facilitating the most enjoyable and satisfying experience possible. My goal is to delight my customers’ customers using creative, technology-driven solutions made simple,” says Jonathan.

Find out more here

Balance, Inc. Announces Key Personnel Changes

Press Release

Cleveland, OH – March 10, 2015 – Balance, Inc., a fast-growing product innovation company, announces personnel changes to better position itself for continued growth.

Anthony DeMore from Vice President to Principal – New Ventures – Anthony joined Balance in 2006, and is an entrepreneur at heart. He has always fostered a culture of invention and innovation at Balance, and will now focus on utilizing the myriad ideas developed independently by its design team to build new revenue streams. Some of Anthony’s focus will be on potential licensing, spinoff opportunities, and strategic partnerships based on Balance’s I.P. portfolio.

“For years our design team has been inventing and developing hundreds of our own product concepts, but our focus on client work always comes first, and that landed these concepts on the back-burner. Anthony will help us finally get the best of these products to market,” says René Polin, President and Founder of Balance, Inc.

Anthony has over twenty years of executive, leadership, and management experience in product development. He has been involved in the design and commercialization of hundreds of successful products, and has been awarded over 40 US patents. Anthony has expertise in leveraging design thinking to provide solutions to leaders in the consumer, commercial, and medical categories. He has led global design teams and developmental programs with companies including Motorola, Black & Decker, Rubbermaid, Procter & Gamble, Starbucks, Euro-Pro (Ninja), to name a few.

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Tom Bernot hired as Vice President – Tom’s extensive career in product marketing and branding brings refreshing insights to the Balance, Inc. innovation process. His expertise has helped companies define, position, and execute successful product launches. “I find the most fascinating thing about product innovation to be the impact it has on a company’s brand journey,” Tom said.

Over the past 20 years, Tom has helped companies define go-to-market strategies both domestically and globally. Most recently serving as the VP of ecommerce for a national distributor of health & wellness products, Tom has both client-side and digital, brand and advertising agency experience. With a strong blend of B2B and B2C, Tom has worked with leading organizations such as Parker Hannifin, Eaton, Lincoln Electric, Sherwin-William, Moen and Kichler Lighting.

“The strategic addition of Tom to Balance will provide incredible benefit to not only our clients, but to our team as well. His deep experience in branding and digital marketing bolsters our service offerings, and supports the commitment that we have to provide our clients with unsurpassed value,” says René Polin.

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Mike Tracz from Design Principal to Director of Design – Mike has worked at Balance since 2008. He has over 10 years’ experience in design and innovation consulting. He is an expert in translating end-user and business needs into successful products and experiences.

“Mike has the ability to understand and effectively translate information and needs from every stakeholder in an innovation program. He can bring cross-functional teams together and have them collaborating seamlessly in no time,” says René Polin.

Mike has worked with clients such as American Express, Colgate, Procter & Gamble, Diebold, and Sherwin-Williams. He will now manage Design, Research, and User Experience teams at Balance for multiple consumer product, commercial, financial, and medical programs.

About Balance
Balance, Inc. is a product innovation firm that creates breakthrough products and experiences for clients in the consumer, commercial, and medical markets. We apply proven methodologies to uncover deep insights into brands, markets, and end-users. Balance translates these insights into impactful user-centric solutions that create growth and sustainable value for our clients. Balance, Inc. is headquartered in Cleveland, OH, USA. Visit Balance, Inc. at www.balanceinc.com.

Media Contact
Tom Bernot
440-247-4711 x101
tom@balanceinc.com

 

Diebold and Balance Recognized for International Design Excellence – For the Second Straight Year

Press Release

CLEVELAND, OH – July 29, 2014 – For the second straight year, the Industrial Designers Society of America (IDSA) has honored Diebold, Incorporated (NYSE: DBD) and Balance, Inc. Diebold, in collaboration with long-time design partner, Balance, Inc., was selected as a finalist in the 2014 International Design Excellence Awards (IDEA®) for their innovative In-Lobby Teller (ILT) concept – an ATM solution that redefines the branch experience. The ILT is a solution for financial institutions that combines typical ATM functions with increased functionality and the personality of a human teller.

“We welcome this recognition as it affirms our company’s mission to enhance ordinary business transactions through superior technology,” said Frank Natoli, Diebold’s Executive Vice president and Chief Innovation Officer. “Our products are attentive-by-design to desires of the everyday consumer, in a response that is both intuitive and futuristic.”

Diebold and Balance assessed the ever-changing landscape of the branch environment, and the multiple needs of banks, to find new ways to increase efficiency and relevance. The team worked together to develop the ILT, and seamlessly combined the accuracy of a machine with the personality of a teller. This new modular design approach provides the financial institution with an adaptable, flexible, and easily-approachable product solution.

“Empathic design, a deep focus on end-user and financial institution needs, and an intuitive, integrated hardware/software interface on the ILT all add up to an unparalleled product and experience,” says René Polin, President & Founder of Balance, Inc.

View the project details here

About Diebold

Diebold Incorporated (NYSE: DBD) is a global leader in providing innovative self-service technology, security systems and related services. Diebold has approximately 16,000 employees worldwide and is headquartered near Canton, Ohio, USA. Visit Diebold at www.diebold.com or on Twitter: http://twitter.com/DieboldInc.

About Balance

Balance, Inc. is a product innovation firm that creates breakthrough products and experiences for clients in the consumer, commercial, and medical markets. We apply proven methodologies to uncover deep insights into brands, markets, and end-users. Balance translates these insights into impactful user-centric solutions that create growth and sustainable value for our clients. Balance, Inc. is headquartered in Cleveland, OH, USA. Visit Balance, Inc. at www.balanceinc.com or on Twitter: http://twitter.com/balanceinc.

About IDSA

Founded in 1965, the Industrial Designers Society of America (IDSA) is the world’s oldest, largest, member-driven society for industrial design. IDSA represents professionals in product design, interaction design, human factors, ergonomics, design research, design management, universal design and related design fields. The organization has more than 3,200 members in 30 professional chapters in the U.S. and internationally. For more information, visit http://www.idsa.org.

Contacts

Media Relations for Diebold
Kelly Piero
+1-330-490-5842
kelly.piero@diebold.com

Investor Relations
Jamie Finefrock
+1-330-490-6319
jamie.finefrock@diebold.com

Media Relations for Balance
Tom Bernot
+1-440-247-4711 x 101
tom@balanceinc.com

Future Entrepreneurs to Convene for “Chaotic, Creative, Loud” Week

Press Release

AKRON, OH – July 24, 2014 – When Hazim Abualola applied to participate in Entrepreneur Immersion Week (EIW) at The University of Akron, he was looking for an opportunity to challenge himself, expand his business knowledge and become a better biomedical engineer after graduation.

From Aug. 3 to Aug. 8, the opportunity will become reality, not only for the UA junior, but also for 54 other students from colleges and universities across Northeast Ohio.

All Majors Welcome

The intensive academic immersion experience is open to undergraduate students of all disciplines. This year’s diverse group includes a majority of non-business majors — individuals who are studying everything from biology, chemistry and physics to psychology, nursing, computer science, fashion and art. Together, they will be introduced to the skills necessary to develop a new business concept, and then apply these skills in a team-based business concept competition.

Now in its eighth year, Entrepreneur Immersion Week is hosted by the Entrepreneurship Education Consortium (EEC), of which UA is a founding member. The 11 participating Ohio colleges and universities rotate as hosts of the one-week residential program. Through a grant from the Burton Morgan Foundation, students are provided with a scholarship that includes room, meals, course materials, and organized special events. All participating students receive a stipend for completing the program.

At UA, participants, along with 17 faculty members from the 11 universities, will live in the Honors College Residence Hall. The packed schedule includes classes, brainstorming sessions, panel discussions and team meetings. It won’t be all work and no play — there is time scheduled for bowling and billiards in the Student Union and attendance at an Akron RubberDucks baseball game in nearby Canal Park.

Work begins with the welcome dinner on Sunday, Aug. 3, at 5:30 p.m.

Rene Polin of Balance Inc., in Cleveland will discuss how entrepreneurs can get the creative thought process moving before the 11 teams representing the member schools begin brainstorming ideas. Polin, two of his senior executives, and EIW faculty will coach, encourage and advise the teams as they develop their new ideas during the week.

Coaches to Guide Students

“This will be a fun, chaotic, creative, loud, exhilarating and we hope productive time,” says Robert E. Chalfant, director of the Entrepreneurship Education Consortium as well as the Fitzgerald Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies at UA, where he also is a visiting lecturer in the College of Business Administration. “In previous years we left it to the students to come up with ideas without the benefit of this coaching session and it took too long to settle on one idea on which the whole team agreed.”

Guest speakers during the week will include young entrepreneurs, including some UA graduates:

  • Milan Patel, started his design company, Clasiq Design, while a UA student in a class taught by Chalfant. Today, company profits are funding his graduate studies at the University of North Carolina. He is making the T-shirts for UA’s EIW team and he will share his experiences at the noon luncheon on Monday, Aug. 4, in the Student Union Ballroom.
  • College of Engineering alumni, Courtney Gras and Tom Vo, founders of Design Flux Technologies, will be the guest speakers at the Awards Luncheon on Aug. 8 at noon in InfoCision Stadium.

As for Hazim Abualola, he is eager to immerse himself in all things entrepreneurial.

Early Lessons Will Help Shape Career

“Business is such an important field in the world,” notes Abualola, an international student from Saudi Arabia. “My first priority is to make the most of this wonderful opportunity by learning new business concepts presented from the speakers and the groups, improving my communication skills by socializing and networking, and gaining from the experiences of the faculty of my university, and the other universities participating in the competition.”

As for how the lessons of entrepreneurship will be applied in his career, that will take time, says Abualola, who hopes to first attend graduate school. “I will probably work at a company in my field to gain experience for a few years until I can start my own business.”

That students like Abualola have the opportunity to benefit from such lessons is just as important as the lessons themselves, notes Chalfant. “It is a wonderful opportunity for our students that we have 11 universities in Northeast Ohio collaborating to apply experiential learning and academic rigor to entrepreneurship and business startups,” says Chalfant. “The EIW is creating value for our students and for the region.”

Visit the Entrepreneurship Education Consortium online for more information. To learn about entrepreneurial studies at The University of Akron, visit the Fitzgerald Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies.

Contacts

Media Contact
Denise Henry
330-972-6477
henry@uakron.edu

Media Contact for Balance, Inc
Tom Bernot
440-247-4711 x101
tom@balanceinc.com

Diebold and Design Partner, Balance, Honored for Innovative ATM Concept

NORTH CANTON, Ohio – July 30, 2013 – The Industrial Designers Society of America (IDSA) honored Diebold, Incorporated (NYSE: DBD) for development of the world’s first Millennial-inspired ATM concept, which was unveiled at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show. The honorees were selected through the International Design Excellence Awards (IDEA®) 2013 competition — a celebration of design excellence in products, sustainability, interaction design, packaging, strategy, research and concepts.

“This honor reflects Diebold’s commitment to delivering powerful products and solutions that surpass user expectations,” said Frank Natoli, Diebold’s executive vice president and chief innovation officer. “Our design and development teams stay connected to evolving consumer demands and put the creation of a positive user experience at the core of all development efforts.”

Diebold, along with long-time partner, Balance, Inc., studied the digital and social habits of a new generation of consumers which inspired the development of the world’s first ATM concept that integrates with mobile devices. Capitalizing on the millennials’ familiarity with mobile devices, the team employed them as the initial user interface and as the vehicle for authentication, allowing users to complete secure, cardless transactions.

“Working seamlessly with Diebold’s forward-thinking design and development teams made it possible to truly rethink the ATM experience,” said Rene Polin, President and Founder of Balance, Inc. “This concept opens up a great number of new opportunities for software and mobile device integration in this space.”

View the project details here

About Diebold

Diebold, Incorporated (NYSE: DBD) is a global leader in providing innovative self-service technology, security systems and related services. Diebold has approximately 16,000 employees worldwide and is headquartered near Canton, Ohio, USA. Visit Diebold at www.diebold.com or on Twitter: http://twitter.com/DieboldInc.

About Balance

Balance, Inc. is a product and interaction design firm that applies proven methodologies to uncover deep insights into brands, markets, and end-users. Balance translates these insights into user-centric solutions that create growth for their clients in the consumer, commercial, and medical markets. Visit Balance, Inc. at www.balanceinc.com.

About IDSA

Founded in 1965, the Industrial Designers Society of America (IDSA) is the world’s oldest, largest, member-driven society for industrial design. IDSA represents professionals in product design, interaction design, human factors, ergonomics, design research, design management, universal design and related design fields. The organization has more than 3,200 members in 30 professional chapters in the U.S. and internationally. For more information, visit http://www.idsa.org.

Contacts

Media Relations for Diebold
Alissa Black
+1-330-490-5842
alissa.black@diebold.com

Investor Relations
Jamie Finefrock
+1-330-490-6319
jamie.finefrock@diebold.com

Media Relations for Balance
Tom Bernot
+1-440-247-4711 x101
tom@balanceinc.com

 

Diebold Unveils Groundbreaking ATM at CES 2013

Press Release

Balance worked closely with long-time partner Diebold to create a conceptual ATM experience that placed the user, the customer, and the environment at the center of the process. The result of this effort received plenty of industry attention when it was unveiled at CES this year.

Our overall challenge was to create a terminal that addressed a few, key areas:

  • Consumer Security
  • Customer Relationships
  • Environmental Footprint

We took a look through the eyes of a new generation of potential consumers, and it inspired significant leaps in technology, security, service, and environmental responsibility.

The move to "the cloud" eliminated many of the constraints imposed by existing ATM technology; allowing Diebold to reduce their environmental footprint, simplify user interaction, and redefine the overall ATM experience for both customer and consumer.

More News on the 2012 Concept ATM