Design Thinking Crash Course
October 5, 2020
With a lecture titled “from idea to MVP in a day”, Isabel walked us through the principles and process of design thinking in less than a day. We had the opportunity to work in teams on a concrete case: designing a career or life coach App. In an effort to share a concise and precise overview, here goes my crash course version in less than 400 words.
Let’s begin with the obvious question: what is Design Thinking?
“Design Thinking is a mindset, a culture and process to create products, services and business models based on extensive human-centered research and iterative prototyping.” – Prof. Larry Leifer (founding director of the Center for Innovation and Design Research at Stanford University)
Well, how and where do you start with a new idea? The key is to get several perspectives because empathy will increase your output.
Okay, we’ve got the definition and the principles. Let’s move to the process. You have the CHALLENGE, so start the research for a proper understanding by asking yourself: What do I know? What do I not know? Next, collect all the insights. At this point you want to make observations in the specific context of your challenge. Then you reach the SYNTHESIS point, where you interpret and identify patterns. At this stage, you define your field of innovation. You have now completed the first diamond loop, or the need-finding phase.
Moving forward, you continue with ideation. At this point, quantity beats quality. Therefore, write down whatever (crazy) ideas come up. Next, select the ideas you want to prototype. You can use the business model canvas for visualisation. At this stage, you need to make your ideas tangible. There are no limits to the type of prototyping but the process must be quick. Keep in mind the following questions: What do I want to test? How do I want to test? and of course with whom? These two final stages complete the second loop, or solution finding phase. You now reach the SOLUTION point, where you start testing your prototype.
Run test interviews and collect feedback. Systematically capture that feedback by classifying positive and constructive inputs, plus questions and new ideas that arise while testing. This will enable you to iterate and fine-tune your prototype.
You’re now ready to pitch your idea!
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