Friday, September 4, 2009

Design Thinking

The other day I was listening to the Reflex Blue Show from 36 Point. They were interviewing Bill Grant and he used the term “Design Thinking.” I had never heard of it before. Being a designer, it piqued my curiosity so I did what anyone else would do. I Googled it. I came across the Wikipedia entry and they defined design thinking as -

Design thinking is a process for practical, creative resolution of problems or issues that looks for an improved future result.[1] It is the essential ability to combine empathy, creativity and rationality to meet user needs and drive business success”

After doing some more research, I found there were various number of steps for the process ranging from four to eight. Also the process when applied is not a start and stop process but a continual one. The final step leads back to the first step so there is constant improvement and refinement.

I laughed to myself as I thought, “Hey that’s what I’ve been doing for a while now and never even realized it.” In fact it is part of my design process. When I started my design business I knew I needed a process or a way to explain how I work. After much thought I boiled it down to four words, each encapsulating a different part of the process - Imagine. Explore. Design. Create.

Imagine. Defining the problem. Identifying the audience. Determining the goal.

Explore. Examining solutions. Creating options. Considering and researching possibilities.

Design. Brainstorming options. Refining and selecting the direction. Putting ideas on paper.

Create. Reviewing the goal. Choosing the best design. Executing the final product.

1 comment:

A Combination of Disciplines said...

For my on design thinking or integrative thinking check out the Rotman School of Management. The Dean, Roger Martin, is a believer and collaborates with Procter and Gamble and the Stanford School of Business.