Subscribe to Fortune Daily to get essential business stories straight to your inbox each morning. When Brian Rice started his role as Global Chief Brand and Design Officer at 3M nearly 11 months ago, he was in many ways walking into a well-oiled machine. 3M is a staple across so many industries with a deep history of applied science and engineering in healthcare, safety, and consumer products. Plus, Rice’s predecessor Eric Quint had built up an incredible team and culture around the power of design. Still, in other respects he faced challenges he couldn’t have imagined amid the throes of Covid-19 sweeping the globe and changing the realities of the healthcare industry forever. Rice grew up in Central Florida, though his career has moved him throughout the South and Midwest between in-house design teams at big brands like Coca-Cola, Procter & Gamble, Georgia-Pacific, and Bristol-Meyers Squibb. I spoke to him about the role design can play in building a business, what’s surprised him most about his experience at 3M to date, and how he sees his work shaping up in a post-covid world.