Design in its most effective form is a process, an action, a verb not a noun. A protocol for solving problems and discovering new opportunities
1: Define the problem
Design thinking requires a team or business to always question the brief, the problem to be solved. To participate in defining the opportunity and to revise the opportunity before embarking on its creation and execution
In design thinking observation takes center stage.
No one’s life was ever changed by a PowerPoint presentation.
Design thinking in problem definition also requires cross functional insight into each problem by varied perspectives as well as constant and relentless questioning, like that of a small child, Why?, Why? Why? Until finally the simple answers are behind you and the true issues are revealed.
Question; How many designers will it take to screw in a light bulb? Answer; Why a light bulb?
2: Create and consider many options
Design thinking requires that no matter how obvious the solution may seem, many solutions be created for consideration. And created in a way that allows them to be judged equally as possible answers
Multiple perspectives and teamwork are crucial. Design thinking suggests that better answers happen when 5 people work on a problem for a day, than one person for five days
3: Refine selected directions
Design thinking allows their potential to be realized by creating an environment conducive to growth and experimentation, and the making of mistakes in order to achieve out of the ordinary results.
3.5 Repeat (optional)
4: Pick the winner, execute
Herbert Simon, in the “Sciences of the Artificial” (MIT Press, 1969) has defined “design” as the “transformation of existing conditions into preferred ones” (p. 55). Design thinking is, then, always linked to an improved future. Unlike critical thinking, which is a process of analysis and is associated with the ‘breaking down’ of ideas, design thinking is a creative process based around the ‘building up’ of ideas
Whether the protocol is outlined in a seven, four or even three stage process, see – shape – build, it all comes from the same place
Charles Eames once famously said: “design depends largely on constraints”.