Credit Tim Brown’s “Change by Design”
Design Thinking is whole brain thinking, it compliments the expected approach of using facts, data and logic, with imagination, intuition, and systemic reasoning, to explore possibilities of what could be, and to create desired outcomes for the customer. A design mindset is not problem-focused, it’s solution focused, and action oriented. It's a process for matching need to demand, constraint to possibility, necessity to functionality. It's human centric, comfortable with change, promotes empathy and is not limited to so called creative industries. Its suited to abstract multifaceted problems as well as product design.
Design Thinking as a Strategy for Innovation & Creativity
Many years ago I had an eureka moment having read Tim Brown’s book “Change by Design”, I realised the principles and philosophy of design thinking and “The Lean Start Up” (Eric Ries) were exactly what was needed to manage the innovation process in the organisation I was working in, to dramatically improve the success rate. I effectively codified creativity with a process that was expansive and reductive, and forced participants to seek diverse insights before ideating.
Explicit or not, design thinking is at the core of effective strategy development and organizational change. We redesigned our capabilities and successfully used this approach to develop strategies on products (enhanced lifecycle), services (augmented product offerings), processes (supply chain improvements), design of places (creative collaborative environment, lean manufacturing), basically anything that involves human interaction and needs to be improved. It helped to knock "innovation" off its pedestal, to de-risk the process and the framework gave team confidence in tackling the most difficult problems, be it how they lead, manage, create and deliver.