What’s Design Thinking?
Design thinking in contrast to business-centered processes is a human-centered process. It starts with a focus on people rather than the business’s desire for profit. It originated in the late 1950s as a problem-solving technique. This technique was quickly morphed into a product development technique. Companies realized that if they want to create products that people would buy, then they really needed to start with the target user rather than the company’s goal of making money. Profit would come from a solid understanding of what people wanted, needed, and what their pain points were.
Design thinking provides a terrific overlay to existing training design processes. Also, gives practitioners great tools and techniques to add to their toolbox the design thinking for training and development.
Why Do We Need Design Thinking?
The design thinking provides a specific means for defining any kind of problem. These problems are from multiple and different perspectives, brainstorming possible solutions. Then prototyping these solutions and then testing and iterating to optimize the best approach. People need to use this method to solve human problems or some difficulties that we encounter in daily life.
For instance, we face issues like overcrowding at metro or bus stations and traffic jams. These situations can lead to frustration and on the other hand in social problems. By applying the design thinking principles, we identify the best possible options to simplify and make these experiences go faster, smoother, and better.
Thinking like a designer can transform the way organizations develop services as well as products on the front end. Also, it can improve the strategy and process in the backend. You can apply the principles to a new service or product, but also you can use to handle a problem that a plagues a city or nation.
With this in mind, this way is a process to think and ideate a solution to handle a problem, or better meet the needs of customers. In fact, it’s a process focused on solutions and not on problems.
Design thinking is a practical tool and an innovator’s mindset into projects.
After understanding why exactly we need design thinking, then we need to follow up some reflections.
- What are the key innovations that inspire you?
- How could you make some things better?
- What are some human problems that you face every day?
- How you solve them?
- What will design thinking help you to compete in?
Design Thinking Approach On My Academic Life
During the last two years of my academic life, I was quite anxious since I had to set my priorities to successfully pass the courses and get the degree.
In academic life, applying the design thinking is all about creating a sense of balance and harmony. At a very broad level, I got answers to these questions to make a positive difference in my academic life.
- What components make up my academic life (personal, ambition, achievements)?
- What components do I want to add, subtract, replace, or keep?
- How can I change my daily routine to make a better impact on my academic life?
- How can I reinvent my life?
In order to understand what I need to retain, add or replace from among the different components in my life, I really needed to know what components comprise my life. So, I maintained my notes that contains details on activities.
- Make me stressed.
- Make me content.
- I am happy to be involved 100% in.
- Pump me up.
- Drain my energy.
Define the problem
I collected information in the stage above, and I knew how my current life is structured. Then I needed to define the problem factoring in these dynamics.
- How can I add a harmony stream to my life?
- How can I do a plan to pass all my courses?
- What skills do I need to embrace and have a rewarding career?
- In the same way, how can I keep up my energy levels and positive thinking throughout the day?
As opposed to knowing pre-defined outcomes with known variables, with life it is a bit different. I don’t know what will come up in the future and hence I need to find my way with the unknown variables of my future. Maybe I know what I like or dislike or what saps my energy, but not much more than that. I can ideate on the possible ways that I can take to achieve a larger objective (i.e. resolving the problem statement). It was not necessary that the first idea lead me to accomplish my larger objective.
Prototype and Test
I took my ideas one step ahead and on the other hand, I carved out real-world solutions to address the problems.
- First, I decided to drink less coffee. I realized that coffee may have given to me some energy but on the other hand, excessive consumption filled me with overexertion during the day.
- Either I had lessons late or early in the morning. I always woke up at a predetermined time. This helped my body learn to wake up early in the morning and do my routine activities.
- Even though the academic courses, ended early in the summer, I still stayed the summer attending some private lessons.
- In addition, every Sunday, I took a walk with my camera. Photography was part of my relaxation.
The main key was to keep re-engineering, fine-tuning, testing, and assessing the outcomes till I was satisfied.
Design Thinking Approach On My Working Life
I worked on a project where the user must be able to quickly find the ports served by the company.
After the testing process, I realized that it was difficult for the user to find a port where that does not know which country the port is from. The solution was to include a search option.
In psychology, it is believed that the left brain controls the more logical, analytical functions. Whereas the right hemisphere processes control the imagination, emotions, and creativity. Design thinking is probably one of the few disciplines that utilize both equally. Keep in your mind that. Everyone can use a design thinking approach. It involves methods that enable empathy with the people. It seeks to define the problem as actively as finding the solution. Design thinking ideates and explores solutions. Also, it is collaborative and involves iterative prototyping. It solves many different types of problems and it is fun.
Author/Copyright holder: Rafael Barros, Pexels Licence / Cameron Casey, Pexels Licence / Andrea Piacquadio, Pexels Licence / Vasilis Baimas. Copyright licence: CC BY-NC-SA 3.0