Design thinking is a non-linear, iterative process used by teams to understand users, challenge assumptions, redefine problems, and create innovative prototypes and tests. Design thinking is both an ideology and a process for solving complex problems in a user-centric manner. Design thinking is a method for solving practical and creative problems. It is heavily based on the methods and processes used by designers (hence the name), but it has evolved from a variety of fields, including architecture, engineering, and business. Design thinking can be applied to any field; it is not required to be design-specific.
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Businesses today recognize the importance of design thinking in innovation. Due to its ability to solve complex problems and be sensitive to human needs without compromising on feasibility, design thinking is one of the leading approaches to innovation across businesses worldwide.
Without innovation, companies cannot strive to survive in the competitive market, where user needs to change rapidly. By adopting design thinking methods, organizations can transform their ideas into functional processes and products catering to the needs of their customers.
Design thinking encompasses the following steps or stages:
- Empathizing: to understand the problem from the perspective of human needs
- Defining: to re-frame the problem statement in a human-centric way
- Ideating: to come up with a wide variety of solutions and ideas
- Prototyping: to create workable samples to assess feasibility of ideas generated
- Testing: to put the prototype to test to finalize on the best solution
Several methods of design thinking exist, both in industry and academia. Here, we will focus on six methods of design thinking, all of which are known to enhance communication among multi-disciplinary teams, their use of visualization techniques, as well as, for its user simplicity for non-experts.
- PERSONAS: this method is used to identify the needs and desires of the user. The persona refers to a “character” which can be used by both the client and the designer as a means of communication in the design process. It is usually employed during the empathizing and defining stages of design thinking. Persona method of design thinking can be used when developing marketing products, for communication and to reflect the human-centric approach of design thinking
- STAKEHOLDER MAP: A stakeholder map is a visual representation of the various groups involved in a particular product or service, such as customers, users, partners, organizations, companies, and other stakeholders . This map can be used to analyze and understand the interconnections between the various stakeholders for a number of purposes. According to Curedale , this map is vital during the defining stage, to identify the key members in the designing process and their relations with one another.
- CUSTOMER JOURNEY MAP (CJM): This technique was born out of service blue-printing. It involves a description of a collection of touchpoints from the start to finish of service delivery, from the point of view of the customer. A “touchpoint” refers to “an instance or a potential point of communication or interaction between a customer and a service provider”. Using the CJM, one can identify the chances of service innovation and improvement. This method of design thinking can be used during the empathizing stage.
- SERVICE BLUEPRINT: This method was developed by Shostack. It is basically a template depicting the steps and flow of service delivery related to the role of the stakeholder as well as the process of delivery. It shows all actions, including technical activities, between the service provider and the customer. In the context of design thinking, this method is useful during the defining stage as it gives an idea of all the in-front tasks and back tasks.
- BUSINESS MODEL INNOVATION: Using a Business Model Canvas (BMC), one can explore the market opportunities, which is central to Business Model (BM) Innovation. Since it describes the business logic of any idea, solution, product etc via visual representation, the BMC is useful as a method of design thinking during the ideation phase.
- RAPID PROTOTYPING (RP): As the name suggests, rapid prototyping allows a quick, visual manifestation of the ideas chalked out on the drawing board. It is useful to determine which of the suggested ideas are technologically possible. RP enhances communication across teams as it provides a visual and tangible representation that can be assessed and analyzed to finalize a product or service that adequately solves the problem. The RP is directly in line with the prototyping stage of design thinking.
At any given point of time, no one method can be sufficient to carry out the design thinking process. The most elaborate and global approach would involve a combination of the methods during the various stages to zero in on a practical and feasible solution to the problem at hand, albeit in a way that meets the human needs – something integral to design thinking.
METHODOLOGIES OF DESIGN THINKING AND INNOVATION
The process of design thinking seeks to solve real-world problems in a real and practical way, with critical emphasis on human needs and expectations.
Since its inception, design thinking methods and tools have focused on the user or the customer. Many of the risks and ambiguity associated with innovation is countered by this human-centric approach. By being involved with the user from the grassroots level and making them an integral part of the process, design thinking is able to achieve creativity and innovation that is applicable and feasible.
Design thinking follows several different types of methodologies or approaches. However, all of them keep human needs central to their approach. The major design thinking methodologies are as follows:
- 4D: This methodology divides the design thinking process into 4 stages namely, Discover, Design, Develop, and Deploy. At first, the problem is identified, then it moves to the drawing board and finally, it is put into action in the last stage.
- DOUBLE DIAMOND: Similar to the 4D approach, the double diamond methodology defines its stages as Discover, Define, Develop and Deliver. At first, several solutions will be offered. Next, based on user needs, the priority areas are identified. The prototyping takes place by the designer based on the priorities identified in the previous stage. Lastly, the constraints and limitations will be addressed to finalize on the most suitable solution to be employed.
- 5D: This methodology of design thinking is a combination of 4D and Double Diamond. But unlike those two methodologies, this approach allows entry during any phase of the design process of the product or service.
- DEEPDIVE: This is more of a tool than a methodology. It is a combination of brainstorming, prototyping and feedback combined in a way that allows managers to develop solutions for different business-related problems and tasks. The various stages in DeepDive ™ are as follows: Understand, Observe, Visualize, Evaluate and Refine, and Implement. First, one needs to understand the needs, constraints, problem areas. Then, it needs to be well observed in the real-world setting among real people. Following that, one begins to envision new, unique solutions which are then tested and finally, commercialized.
- STAGE-GATE: This methodology of design thinking focuses on the economic and financial aspect of delivering an idea or solution as a product or service. It is like a roadmap which guides the designers and decision makers through the risky process of ideation to production. “Gates” or checkpoints are positioned at strategic locations to evaluate the process from time to time so that growth and profit are not hampered. These checkpoints are manned by specific management authorities or “gatekeepers” who decide whether the project should continue or should be scrapped.
- PENTATHLON: This methodology is considered one of the most important methodologies in design thinking specifically because it gives special emphasis to the interaction with the environment and with people in the design thinking process.
- SIMON HERBERT: This methodology divides the process into 7 distinct stages namely: Define, Research, Ideate, Prototype, Choose/Objectives, Implement and Learn. Although considered a non-iterative process, the Simon Herbert methodology stages can occur simultaneously and may be repeated as well.
- BOOTCAMP BOOTLEG (STANFORD): One of the most well-defined and complete methodologies to exist is the one developed by the Stanford d.school. It defines its steps as Empathize, Define, Ideate, Prototype, and Test. Empathy is key to the human-centric approach of design thinking which this methodology incorporates. This methodology is also a non-linear approach to design thinking. One can move forwards or backwards on the stages and contribute throughout the process.
These methodologies had been designed in different circumstances to aid different businesses in the process of innovation. A good design thinking approach would be to identify which methodology suits the current needs and problems and seek to find solutions in an iterative and complete way.
DESIGN THINKING PROCESS: STAGES IN DESIGN THINKING
Design thinking is a method of problem solving which seeks to solve problems using a solution-focused approach. In many ways, design thinking is a more reliable method. It is structured in such a way that it allows one to solve complex, ill-defined problems, understand the human needs when solving these problems, incorporate brainstorming when generating ideas as well as using a hands-on approach in prototype and testing.
Like any systematic approach to problem solving, design thinking follows a particular process. This design thinking process progresses through several stages. According to the Design Thinking Model proposed by the Hasso-Plattner Institute of Design at Stanford (d.school), the design thinking process consists of five stages. They may be summarized as follows:
- EMPATHIZE: Empathy refers to the ability to identify and acknowledge the feelings and emotions of others as one’s own. In the domain of design thinking, empathizing refers to identifying and acknowledging the problem as one’s own to gain a better and deeper understanding of the same. It involves immersing oneself into the problem to understand its intricacies and nuances by consulting experts in that area, observing those who are facing the problem, and trying to be involved in the physical environment where the problem exists.
- DEFINE (THE PROBLEM): Once the designer has gathered the information regarding the problem via the empathizing stage, s/he needs to organize and elaborate on the information. Through careful observation and analysis, one cans seek to clearly define the problem in the form of a problem statement. However, one should be aware that the problem needs to be stated in a human-centric way.
- IDEATE: Having defined the problem statement, the designer is now ready to start generating ideas to solve the problem. Using a variety of methods the designer and his team seeks to “think out of the box” to come up with options and ideas that can serve to be useful solutions for the problem at hand. There are several techniques to ideate and think out of the box: Brainstorming, Brainwrite, Worst Possible Idea, and SCAMPER to name a few.
- PROTOTYPE: A prototype is a scaled-down version of a product or item which can be used to test the solutions generated in the stage of Ideation. In other words, it’s a sample of the final product or item that is being considered to be introduced or improved upon. Here, the designer creates several prototypes which can be tested by the team themselves, by people from other departments, or by small groups outside the design team. The purpose of the prototype stage is to identify and finalize the best possible solution for the problem defined in the previous stages.
- TEST: After having decided on the best solution to incorporate into and generate the final product, it is put to rigorous testing so that it can serve to redefine one or more related problems as well as inform users about conditions of use, how to think and empathize. Even during this stage, changes and refinements are made to derive a much deeper understanding of the product and its users.
Although the five stages mentioned above indicate a linear flow of the design thinking process from one stage to the next, in reality, it is much non-linear. This means that, during the design thinking process, it may happen that some stages occur simultaneously, later stages may happen before the earlier stages, etc.
Innovation as a core value lies at the heart of most industries and companies. Without innovation, one cannot strive to promote and progress as an organization. But what drives innovation? Design thinking is a strategy which is being embraced as a tool for sparking ideas and leading to innovation.
WHAT IS DESIGN THINKING?
Simply put, design thinking is a methodology used by designers to find solutions to complex problems for their clients. The notable feature of this method is that it does not focus on the problem; rather it is solution-focused and action-oriented. Using creativity, imagination, logic and reasoning, design thinking aims to generate several possible outcomes that benefit the customer.
“Design thinking can be described as a discipline that uses the designer’s sensibility and methods to match people’s needs with what is technologically feasible and what a viable business strategy can convert into customer value and market opportunity.”
– Tim Brown CEO, IDEO
Design thinking follows a structured pattern which enables the designers to come up with the most feasible solutions and options for their clients. The reason why organizations rely on design thinking for innovation is because the structured approach for understanding and pursuing innovation ensures real contribution that leads to growth and added value.
A general framework of design thinking is as follows:
- DISCOVERY: involves choosing a topic that is strategic to innovation, gathering data and, identifying, understanding and empathizing with the unmet needs in the area
- (RE)FRAME OPPORTUNITY: involves looking for patterns and insights, questioning assumptions, framing one’s point of view and, defining the scope
- INCUBATE: The most underrated step involves doing nothing at all regarding the issue at hand. It involves taking a step back from the problem and focusing on diverse other stimuli, sleeping on the problem, meditating etc.
- IDEATE/ILLUMINATE: Here one starts to work on the ideas, come up with possible solutions, explore all kinds of possibilities, give shape to the ideas
- EVALUATE/REFINE IDEAS: Charting out the pros and cons, limitations, viability, feasibility of every idea and solution
- RAPID PROTOTYPE/TEST: Put your ideas to action albeit in a small way, observe how the solution works out if put to test
- DELIVER: It involves finally putting your idea out there. Seeking the final approval and launching
- ITERATE AND SCALE: involves evaluating the final course of action, learning from it, creating better alternatives and finally, leading to innovation
What lies at the core of design thinking and innovation is the deep understanding of the clients’ or customers’ unmet or unarticulated needs. That is where the greatest source of new ideas and hence, higher margins lie. What makes design thinking less prone to risks? It involves a carefully charted out path to meet customers’ needs by engaging the customer in the process; walking them through the prototypes to learn from their inputs and refining it along the way. The reliance on customer insights from real-world experiments instead of simply on market research or historical date makes design thinking a far better strategy and method for achieving innovation.
DESIGN THINKING COURSES – LEARNING ABOUT INNOVATION
One of the biggest myths one can come across is that creativity cannot be nurtured; only a blessed few are born with it. Just like any other skill may be honed and perfected with practice and effort, so can creativity. And, this creativity is not restricted to simply the arts. Creativity exists in business as well. It’s just known by a slightly different name: innovation.
Every business strives for innovation. Innovation ensures not just the survival but also the subsequent rise of companies across domains. To be innovative, companies need to strategize and plan their course of action. They need to employ out-of-the-box methods and attempt strategies that have never been done before.
But, how does one go about being innovative? There is no one road to innovation. Every company is different, hence, every path to innovation is different. However, one can utilize a certain vehicle which will drive them down the road to innovation. This vehicle is design thinking.
Design thinking is the new buzz word amongst businesses. Everybody wants to try it and benefit from it. If you are well-versed with the process and methods, you stand out among the decision makers responsible for building teams aimed at innovation. That’s why design thinking courses are on the rise. There are a wide variety of courses and workshops to choose from to learn about design thinking and practice it hands-on.
Courses can be broadly divided into two categories:
- Blended (in-person and online)
Most in-person courses are short duration but highly intensive and rigorous courses on design thinking. They focus on the design thinking process as well as innovation as a whole; building creatively motivated teams, methods and techniques to spur innovation, understand the psychology behind human and machine interaction etc. Although in-person design thinking courses are structured and designed with a thorough approach, they are also quite expensive to engage in. Moreover, the target groups for in-person design thinking courses are usually senior officials and team leaders.
A more approachable option is online courses on design thinking. They are certification courses which not only teach you about design thinking, but also provide certification upon completion of course. You may not be able to practice design thinking hands-on, but you would gain access to a wide range of resources and tools that would enable you to put the design thinking process into practice once you have learned it.
Blended courses refer to those online courses, which also offer a few in-person sessions. In a way, this is the most appropriate way to learn about design thinking since it gives you the opportunity to put your learning into practice in a controlled environment that can be assessed and improved upon.
Along with courses, one can choose to participate in workshops organized by institutes and organizations where you get to mingle and interact with experts and incumbents alike who share a common interest: design thinking.
Lastly, one can opt to read the multitude of books available along with the materials they have access to from their course. Learning is best when one tries to build on the knowledge through curiosity and self-discovery.
Design thinking is a very practical approach to innovation that requires practice and perseverance to master. A good way to improve your design thinking skills is to keep yourself updated via courses that teach new techniques and methods. Then, one must also employ their learning across a wide range of problems. Practice enhances flexibility; a core component of creativity and innovation.
While creative and adaptable thinking may come naturally to some people, the following methods can help you acquire the ability:
- Recognition – Recognizing that both at business and at home, adaptive thinking is utilised. Gaining confidence is a must for developing any skill, and the more one practises, the better one gets. Establishing adaptive thinking as a skill strengthens the knowledge base
- Practice – Practicing adaptable thinking in different situations. Strong leaders practice! When not competing, athletes remain in the gym. Outstanding leaders ought to be no different. Find low-hanging fruit to put your skills to the test. It won’t matter if you make a mistake; this is merely practice. Look for various workplace settings
- Self-control – When faced with a challenge, learning to control one’s inclination to take action right away. Prior to making a decision, always give situations some thought. Thinking about the situations along with all the possible outcomes
- Creativity – Be receptive to innovative approaches. To make life simpler, we design structures and systems. We must be willing to try new ideas when those systems fail. Adaptive thinking involves going against the norm and not following the rules. Without guidelines or a plan, what would one do or how would or approach the issue? Being a better strategic thinker often requires going back to the drawing board and unlearning old patterns and habits
- Awareness – Being aware of changes in our surroundings and preparing for them. It is preferable to be proactive than reactive. Once ready looking for patterns in our immediate environment to gain insight into potential future events
- Questions – Asking questions regarding the issue experiencing. Using critical thinking to grasp the issue. Why did your client abandon the project midway? Who is accountable? What drove those decisions? How can you proceed with the necessary adjustments? Make holes and pose inquiries. The more one can comprehend the problem, the better equipped one will be to fix it and stop it from happening again
- Evaluation – It is crucial that the managers’ evaluate the risk tolerance of not just themselves but also other people, team, shareholders and community while developing adaptive thinking
- Cognitive Flexibility – Cognitive flexibility is the ability to adapt and adjust oneself in a new setting and achieve goals. Sometimes it is difficult to switch role as a manager because managers are multi-tasking but cognitive flexibility helps to switch roles efficiently and concentrate on one task at a time. It is important both at the micro and macro level as when encountered with a problem, finding various solutions and selecting the one most suited for it.
Experience Architecture and Design Thinking- How They Are Related To Each Other
When it is a Business Architecture, it is much challenging to create an enterprise’s capability model. However, Design Thinking is the best thing that you can use to manage the business capability development model. In some enterprises, there is no capability model. To those enterprises, it may not be easy to build the first model. They can look for some reference models to simplify the task.
There are different ways of framing organizational capabilities, and this framing is much valuable. The way, in which you frame the capabilities, will drive more conversations. Customer Service, Marketing and Sales are some of the common capability groups in an organization.
Capability model and your business structure-
A capability model has to be always independent of the organization’s structure and processes. However, the highly effective models have to reflect the ownership and needs of any organization. Although they are complicated models, you have a chance of solving them with the use of Design Thinking concepts.
Design Thinking is one of the best techniques, useful for approaching a range of intricate issues. This is a special method for having creative focus, which causes the emergence of superb ideas. Design Thinking has turned out to be a model to bring together various practices to foster innovativeness in a world.
Enterprise Architects- Why they have to show interest in Design Thinking-
You know that Enterprise Architects play a role to define the business tactics. They also search for the importance of those tactics for data, technology, IT and processes. Moreover, they have an ability to make out the customers’ perspectives. Enterprise Architects are capable of identifying the needs and challenges of internal stakeholders. While they apply their skills for any other purpose, they also capture the desires and preferences of customers. The EAs know the way to connect every element. For this reason, they have to refine their skills on Design Thinking.
How Design Thinking process enables EA to develop better and more advanced enterprises-
By having high focus on the customers’ needs and by capturing the environment, aspirations and issues, you will get benefit. After identifying these things, you can introduce the digital innovations by following the best solutions and trends. It helps in keeping up the enterprise purpose, minimizing the marketing time and responding to the changes very fast.
In the field of Design thinking, there are some major assumptions-
- We make our creations more refined with rapid prototyping process
- We deal with something without identifying the destination
- Everything of our solutions is around customer empathy
A Design Thinking process is useful for designing anything, including a Capability Model of a business.
Now, let us summarize the topic on experience architecture and Design Thinking. Like builders, architects and engineers in the construction sector, there are communication gaps, affecting the implementation of the best design. That is why we have to combine Design Thinking with experience architecture. It will be the right solution to fill the present gaps very easily.
Design thinking has its effect in various aspects of our life. However, most of us do not realize this truth. Design thinking is helpful for producing new products. Simultaneously, it is also effective to develop the best leaders in your company. In the present economy, it is always essential to have better leadership skills for driving success in the business.
Design thinking is one of the user-centric processes for detecting and solving various issues. Still, we have not found it to be the commonly applied approach for learning different programs. The major thing about the design thinking process is that it is based on well-established research.
Usually, we have a view at our business resources for creating the products. However, the leaders, trained with the design thinking process, ask about the needs of their clients. Then, they find out how the company will meet those needs. Interviews, research and analysis can be effective for identifying the issues to be solved.
Design thinking – How it results in better leadership
Empathy is one of the major things in the design thinking process. In the field of leadership, you need to build empathy for those whom you are going to help. Thus, empathy is a must while you adopt the design thinking process.
While you have chosen this approach, you have to make out the real needs of team members, superiors, colleagues and employees. By doing it, you will also be able to develop mutual relationships, fostering the company culture and loyalty.
Design thinking approach has always a connection to a better future. It is different from the critical thinking process. This is a process to make analysis. Moreover, this innovative process is effective in breaking down ideas and building them in a new way. Maybe, you will not get the instant solution to your issues. However, with the adoption of this design thinking process, your team members will be successful in reaching the solution in due course.
Lesson of persistence from design thinking
The best leaders have persistence, and they do not lose their hope until reaching their target. In fact, we can compare design thinking to journey, which needs persistence. This is one of the consistent processes for achieving superb results. Moreover, it’s the most effective process to train the leaders to retain their persistence till they have found the right solution.
Reliable leaders are also dedicated learners. These leaders are capable of learning from the past. However, they focus on the present, while evolving with varying future needs. Design thinking processes play a very important role in creating the most responsible leaders. Those leaders have the potentials to build resourceful teams, find the solutions to problems and make out the value of every team member.
Now, in conclusion, we can say that design thinking is one of the best options to develop leadership skills. The leaders will understand that the value of all team members is higher than that of an individual. Thus, you may look for training centers to learn about design thinking.
Can Design Thinking assist in creating great Employee Experience?
To win in the marketplace you must first win in the workplace – Doug Conant
Employees are the start and end point of any business success. They are the face of your organization in public and hence it is important to create an environment which fosters employee excellence. The company’s culture defines how employees feel and behave.
The employee experience is the function of employee engagement which cycles from hire to retire, from onboarding to off-boarding and all the interactions that happen in-between. Employee experience is all about creating an environment where employees are self-motivated to be in the office and not pushed to be in the office.
Hence, we are clear that creating a great employee experience is a human-centric approach which involves grasping an employee’s needs and desires to create those moments that truly matter in their day, year, and entire career.
In order to create great employee experience, we only need to focus on three things. Every employee experience is comprised of three pillars: culture, environment, and technology.
Culture stems from the values, attitudes, practices and the mission of the organization which flows from the top. However, it is also about feeling. If the physical workplace is about the something that you can see, touch and breathe, the culture is the one you feel. It is the vibe you create when you walk in the door and the mood and the tone it sets for you as an employee. Therefore, it is very easy for a culture to turn from positive to negative or vice versa as per the structure and the policies of the organization.
To excel in employee experience, the environment they work in, is equally important. The workplace should not only be employee-centric but also reflect company’s aspirations and values. It is all about the look of your organization – the art that hangs on the wall, the floor plan, demographics of our colleagues, the on-site gym maybe etc.
Technology here refers to the tool’s employees use to get their work done. This includes everything from the internal social network your company might use to the mobile devices that are approved to access to. It’s not hard to see the significant role technology plays in creating great employee experience. Imagine if you are pushed to use outdated technologies how frustrated you would be with meeting those deadlines as it makes hard to communicate and collaborate with your fellow colleagues and drastically increasing the time to get a task done hence a low score on employee experience.
The future of business revolves around employee experience. This is being recognized around the globe and we see heavy investment for the same. But the question really boils down to “how do we do it?”
Well, Design Thinking to your Rescue!
Design Thinking can help the process developers transition to experience architects by engaging employees right through their lifecycle.
To define design thinking, let me say this – “Innovation is no longer a strategic choice” of a few organizations. It is necessary for business continuity in almost every industry. Design thinking is an innovative process of developing business cases and prototypes for innovative solutions. It takes a systematic approach to find a unique solution to common problems by bringing together market realities, a deep understanding of customer problems and business aspirations to create new products and services.
Design Thinking assist in having deep understanding of the process of innovation, designing and implementing innovative projects in organizations and conduct training programs that promote a culture of innovation.
Hence to answer the question – “can design thinking assist in creating great employee experience?” – yes it does, as it takes a human-centric approach which is the foundation to a great employee experience.
Empathy maps in design thinking can be better understood by gaining insight into the what entails deign thinking and then observing how empathy maps are useful in design thinking.
Design thinking is described as a repetitive process which seeks to understand the user. This is carried out by challenging the existing assumptions and identifying alternative solutions and strategies by redefining the problems. The alternative strategies and solutions may not be recognized while initially meeting with the clients and may not comply with our initial level of understanding. It is also said to provide a solution-based approach to problem solving and is a way of thinking and working as well as a collection of hands-on methods.
An in-depth interest should be taken to develop an understanding of the people for whom products or services are being designed for in design thinking. This aids the designer to observe and develop empathy with the target user. Design thinking is found to be extremely useful in tackling ill-defined or unknown problems, by bringing about a human-centric way of framing the problem, generation of many ideas during the brain storming sessions, and adopting a hands-on approach in prototyping and testing. Design thinking is not limited in the sense they are also involved in the ongoing experimentation such as sketching, prototyping, testing, and trying out concepts and ideas.
Now, to carry forward the main objectives of design thinking, we use empathy maps that will aid in process of deign thinking. Empathy maps not bound by the chains of context would be used to capture the user/ client’s motivation to identify the underlying needs that motivate the functional and system/ technical requirements. It is recognized as a tool that that helps the designers empathize with the client who they are designing the solution for. This may be implemented in the beginning or mid-stream to re-focus the client. Empathy mapping requires the designer to put themselves in the shoes of the user, engage in prototype designing and activities such as role playing to gain a better perspective of the user.
However, in the context of design thinking, empathy map would use to understand the needs of the client in terms of the product or service for creative problem solving during the “Empathize” or initial phase. It should also be used to define the human-centered products, services, and internal processes.
The requirement for empathy maps is masked with the what empathy itself is described as. Empathy is recognized as a core skill for designers to successfully grasp the requirements of the clients. Empathy is seen as a need for business success, for designers to be accepted and used by those which they have been deigned. More importantly, it is seen as important for building trust.
A traditional design thinking empathy map is divided into four quadrants: Says, Thinks, Does and Feels while the user or the persona is placed in the middle. They are supposed to provide a holistic perspective as to who the user is and not a sequential or chronological one.
- The Says quadrant focuses on what the user has to says out loud during the process of interview or some other usability study
- The Thinks quadrant contains what the user is thinking throughout the process. To differentiate this quadrant from the previous one, the designer should concentrate on what the user is not able to vocalize but is thinking out and the reason behind this reluctance
- The Does quadrant encloses the actions taken by the user. This entails from the research done as to what the user does physically and how do they go about doing it
- The Feels quadrant entails the user’s emotional state. This is often represented through an adjective followed by a short sentence for the purpose of context.
An Empathy Map allows us to sum up our learning from engagements with people in the field of design research.
What is Design Thinking and Innovation?
Design Thinking and Innovation are creative processes that look to find innovative solutions to old or new business and human problems. This definition means that the process of Design Thinking and Innovation can be applied to any problem – not just designing innovative products or services but functions like HR, Finance, Sales etc. can use its principles to become more innovative in their approach.
Why Design Thinking and Innovation Facilitator Training?
Design Thinking and Innovation have become the way to success in the new age economy where you either reinvent yourself constantly or become redundant. While innovation may sound like a creative endeavor that happens by chance, any practitioner of innovation will tell you that it is a highly structured process. Unlike an artist who waits for inspiration to come to them, an innovator actively seeks inspiration through a structured process and then works with that inspiration to create a product or service that is innovative. This means that the process of innovation needs to be facilitated by an expert so that wild ideas can become concrete offerings. Here is where there is a need for trained facilitators who understand the process of innovation and can guide a group through the process of innovation in a structured manner. So, if you are looking to become a Design Thinking or Innovation facilitator, the first thing you need to do is enroll into a training program to become an expert Design Thinking and Innovation Facilitator.
What are the Skills Required by Design Thinking and Innovation Facilitators?
- Ability to think creatively and apply creative thinking processes
- Ability to listen and nudge the group in the right direction without controlling or dominating the conversations
- Ability to manage time effectively so that conversations are structured and focused
- Ability to manage disagreements and conflict effectively
- Ability to hold the attention of the group through facilitation techniques and skills
What Does Design Thinking & Innovation Facilitator Training Include?
Design Thinking and Innovation facilitators are responsible for driving innovation within the organization or in specific functions within the organization. These facilitators can build and promote a culture of innovation within the organization.
The Design Thinking and Innovation Facilitator will generally include the following elements:
- Understanding Design Thinking and Innovation – Participants should first learn the basic meaning and benefits of Design Thinking and Innovation. They should also gain understanding on how Design Thinking and Innovation can be applied to various functions in the organization.
- Process – The second step should be for the facilitators to understand the process of design thinking and innovation.
- Tools and Techniques – Next, it is critical for facilitators of design thinking and innovation workshops to be equipped with tools and techniques of the innovation process. The facilitator should be able to use various tools and techniques depending on the type of innovation workshop they are facilitating.
- Facilitation Skills – Last but not least, a design thinking and innovation facilitator needs to learn effective facilitation techniques so that they are able to facilitate these workshops effectively and achieve group objectives.
Who Should Attend Design Thinking & Innovation Facilitator Training?
- Senior Management Executives
- Product Managers
- Experienced Project Managers and Innovators
- Senior Human Resource Professionals
- Trainers and Coaches
Design Thinking and Innovation
Design thinking is a process to create various alternate solution to specific issues using individual as well as group capabilities and through the ideas of employees, customers, vendors and the general public. However, the core of innovation is a messy and unstructured process of creativity.
Design Thinking ventures to inspire an ability to take an abstract idea and develop something with the idea which is the essential element of creativity. With this statement, we can establish that design thinking, and innovation seem to have some connection. This is based on the fundamental belief that an idea that is never realized, ergo an unexecuted idea, is a valueless premise and that is equivalent to valuable thinking.
In order to solve issues in a creative and innovative way, many organizations evolved to use Design Thinking. Design thinking, and innovation are important in an organization as a combination. There by organizations are pushing their employees to think like designers and understand the basic application of design principles.
The growing need for Design Thinking stems from its capability to combine imagination and intuition through the application of certain logic and systematic reasoning to explore the possibilities. The iterative process of Design Thinking is based on challenging assumptions and redefining issues for products, services or customer experiences. There has been an increasing demand to elevate the capacity to help solving problems in business complexities since Design Thinking has taken hold.
Design Thinking and innovation is explained as a human-centred-approach that draws from the toolkit of the designer themselves in order to integrate three core necessities:
- The needs of the people
- The possibilities of technology
- The requirements for business success
That is, it is about human-centered innovation.
Irrespective of the scope and authority of challenge, Design Thinking is said to work the best when it comes to developing a human sense of things and tackle challenges in a way that best suits to meet the human needs. This requires some level of innovation and thereby, design thinking, and innovation are intertwined. In order to tussle with the newly complex and sensitive needs of the modern society, the traditional conformist, controlled, technical or linear approach is no longer of use. Design Thinking provides us with the tool to explore What Could be in order to move towards a better situation or state.
Innovation on the other hand, is a more complex process than design and even than the invention of new products, systems or interaction modes. The acceptance and use by people are also implied. Innovation is also known to be hard to actually practice while the benefits and the needs are easy to understand. It is difficult to teach students to be innovative, creative as well as inventive.
However, by framing Design Thinking in a particular way, the creativity became limited which in turn leads towards failure to innovate. Processes related to innovation relies quite a bit on creativity. They are also said to rely on the existing knowledge and the technical skills possessed by the members of the design team and the others who are involved in the process of design. That is, the learning outcomes of such processes are hard to predict. Thereby, Design thinking and innovation should be integrally incorporated in an organization.
Like creativity, Design thinking attempts to foster as the very concept itself is continually evolving. An example could be stated as the several stages of Empathize, Define, Ideate, Prototype and Test. These steps serve as a platform for the problems to be framed, the right questions to be asked, more ideas to be created and form this, the best answers are chosen. These steps can occur simultaneously and be repeated and is clearly not linear in nature.
The lack of innovation is associated with risk within some businesses which has deemed to be dangerous enough to lead to the creation of a new executive role termed as “Chief Innovation Officer.” This is role is developed in order to ensure a leader who is responsible for the management of the process of innovation in an organization.
Using Innovation Competency model for Managers to get Creative
For companies to build innovation muscle, they need to make sure to include innovation in their competency models. A competency can be defined as a behavior that exists as a persistent pattern and is a result of a combination of knowledge, motivations, abilities, and skills. Formalizing this behavior and making it persistent is what an innovation competency model will help you achieve. What this model also does is, help prescribe ideal patterns that are required for generating exceptional performances. They help evaluate performances of employees after diagnosing thoroughly. Though a lot of work is involved in the process, it’s all worth it!
When a competency model is based on innovation, it helps everyone involved in an organization to understand how innovation evolves. This model is also extremely beneficial in providing valuable information on new methodologies so managers are able to adapt better in an environment where rapid acceleration takes place unabated. However, for such a model to be successful, there are many challenges managers need to consider and take them head-on. Some of these include:
- Using ideation for maximum benefits. More often than not companies use ideation for generating many ideas. The question is – how to use it strategically and selectively?
- How to go about improving innovation competency?
- How to ease the migration process from formal decision-processes to delegated decision making
Innovation competency model help managers bring out their creativity
When creativity is brought into the picture, managers are able to take a different approach to problem-solving, and when this is taken in the context of business atmosphere, the result can be pleasantly surprising and highly rewarding. Creativity is really important for managers as it gives them an opportunity to set their business apart from others, thereby making customers have an interest in their services and products.
If you are a manager in a company, there are many ways to demonstrate creativity in your role. First, you need to remove all constraints that have prevented you from being creative. Also, there is no need for you to change the way you are or in doing things you are comfortable with. It’s just that you need to be creative when there is a need to be. Another way of demonstrating your creativity at the workplace is to immerse yourself in the problem. Remember, being creative and having unique ideas isn’t necessarily a speedboating process. Instead, you need to look into the things from different perspectives and deeply.
As a manager, you know creativity isn’t a thing for you when you’re too cautious, narrow, and conservative in your approach. You may also be one of those professionals that have limited background and have little or no idea about the workings of creativity. In contrary to this, there are behavioral indicators that, as a manager, you can use to improve your creativity. Typically, these indicators are included in an innovation competency model endorsed by companies. You can be assured of being a creative manager when you come up with unique and creative ideas on your own and are able to establish connections easily without any preconceived notions, etc.
Creating a culture of innovation and creativity starts by promoting these competencies at all levels of the organization. Making these an integral part of the competency framework ensures that the competencies are promoted at all levels of the organization.
DevOps is being increasingly adopted in software industry. There are many benefits of adopting DevOps like reducing cost, reducing time all the way to increasing sales. However, DevOps can be one of the main drivers of innovation. The word innovation has a wide scope hence the innovation we are discussing here is about improving speed of delivery of software and improving processes using innovation.
The four factors where DevOps can drive innovation are continuous delivery, automation, communication and collaboration. There are number of tools that help in continuous delivery of software. However, merely introducing these tools and asking people to use these tools may not be sufficient. Process improvement is needed for effective use of such tools hence there is a need to innovate processes to reduce time. If a new tool for continuous delivery becomes a burden to developers as the current processes has not been changed to ensure a good fitment of this tool, it will increase time rather than reducing it. This means adopting DevOps is likely to drive innovation in current processes for continuous delivery.
Automation is key these days in any software delivery process. There are different kinds of automation that can be put into place by an organization. Automation of build processes is bare minimum where a software build is created automatically daily and is validated automatically. This means infrastructure is needed for validation. One step further would be to automation of test cases where an automatically created build is tested automatically using virtual machines or physical machines. Automation of testing means that QA team in any organization needs to have certain amount of scripting skills to automate test cases. Such an implementation helps an organization to focus more on creating additional test cases rather than spending time executing existing manual test cases as this is automatically done. In other words, DevOps is again driving innovation to improve automation of processes like validation of a software build.
Clear communication is critical for success of any process in any organization. Typically communication is manual or automated. The automated part of communication can be done using auto-generated notifications from tools. It is important to define processes in such a way that amount of communication done automatically is more than manual communication. This reduces dependencies and human errors including but not limited to interpretation of what has been sent in communication. If standardized templates are used for communication, there is little room for misinterpretation. Thus DevOps can drive innovation to improve communication as well by requiring standardization of communication templates.
Improvement in communication will almost always result in improvement in collaboration. For any project to succeed in any organization, collaboration is must not only between individuals of same team but also between individuals of different teams as well as team level collaboration. Automation of communication brings in certain level of transparency between teams and individuals. This is needed to make collaboration more effective as each individual needs to ensure that he/she delivers up to expectation in order for any project to build software, to be successful.
Hence one can easily see how adoption of DevOps drives innovation in various aspect of software development.
Innovation can be complicated and can sometimes feel like a hassle for heads of innovation at large companies, but that can’t stop you from moving forward in the midst of constant digital destruction. Creativity is an important leadership quality which is necessary for prosperity. As several barriers of innovation are coming up and the world is becoming more complex, creative leaders invite advancing innovation, encourage others to drop ancient approaches and take balanced risks. But, it’s sad that many organizations fail to release their most valuable resources: employee creativity and imagination. They are devoid of a systematic approach to building a culture of innovation, and then wonder why they fail to succeed.
Here are some barriers of innovation, which should be removed to enable your employees to take your organization forward.
- Closed-Mindedness – Employees are thoroughly involved working with the minute details of your company, so listen to them if they come up with a significant innovation as it could save much time and money
- Traditions – Past results should never be used to foretell future success. Stay with your traditions if you want, but associate them with visions that will prepare you for an ever-changing future
- Jealousy – The world of business is full of politics and jealousy. Good leaders and employees support the people around them. Accept an innovative idea brought by an employee. The best leaders try to employ people who are better than them, so it makes sense that your employees will come up with some good ideas that you haven’t thought of yet
- Budget Issues – Innovation is expensive and can eat up a lot of cash flow and present a level of risk but that is no reason you shouldn’t look into and evaluate the risk and reward of each initiative. If there’s enough evidence that a risk is worth taking, then go ahead and spend on it
- Generation Gap – There is a big generation gap with the younger crowd complaining that older leaders would never listen to their new ideas. Such barriers of innovation are hard to overcome, but they should be removed. Older people can be just as innovative and maybe more innovative than a young person. There is no excuse for any age to not listen to and assess a creative idea
- Communication – Communication is important when presenting an innovative idea. Encourage employees to present ideas in a brief way that makes it easier for others to understand. Poor communication can lead to the failure of a great innovation
- Size – It’s obvious to think your organization can’t change course because of its size. If you do not motivate your employees to innovate, smaller companies in your industry will win in the long run and you may fail
- Thought Leadership – Thought leadership is becoming a necessity for proper leadership. Some leaders hold back because they don’t want to seem arrogant or they’re just being lazy. One of the biggest factors to becoming a great thought leader is contributing to credible sources of information about your industry otherwise your employees won’t be as inspired to copy your sense of innovation or create their own
- Resources – Not having the resources is a common excuse people give when they’re presented with an innovative idea. You can find the resources by bringing on new employees or redirecting resources if the right idea comes along. If you remove this barrier of innovation, you will more carefully contemplate what’s possible
It’s not necessary to consider every idea that comes from your employees. However, you should create an environment where employees are always encouraged to come up with innovative ideas. Always keep an open mind and assess ideas and try to remove these barriers of innovation.
Innovation plays one of the important roles behind the success of every organization. If we have a look at the online world, we can see how the Internet has transformed different fields in our everyday life. Senior professionals also believe in the value of innovation in various sectors and industries. Now, to drive innovation in an organization, the leaders have to make their best effort.
The leaders in every sector know the real need to achieve new development, entering new markets and defining fresh products. Some managers, HR professionals and officials do not know the way of driving the innovations with everyday operations. Thus, the leaders must apply their thinking ability for the innovation. We must focus on leadership in fostering and driving innovation.
Design thinking and its different steps–
One of the major leadership philosophies is design thinking. However, this design thinking is an intimidating concept, and there are various steps for accomplishing it-
These steps are important for finding the most effective improvements. Although collaboration is one of the major factors for design thinking, we can find the relevancy of leaders. The main thing is to put together various perspectives of an organization. The leader must use the collective ability of his team for the best solutions.
The leaders must synchronize several departments with different goals. Then, they can identify the perspectives for solving the problem of an organization. They must assign various tasks in the right way to use the strengths of every team member.
Now, we can clearly say that this design thinking helps in altering your present leadership approach. It is also true for innovation leadership. This type of philosophy works for both customers and a company.
We have found three leadership rules, which provide emotional assistance, important to the innovators.
Demonstrating the need for empowering trust-
Those involved in the regular business work must ensure the trust of leaders in their skills, efforts and decision. This helps innovators in having self-reliance.
Keeping the purpose forefront for inspiration and motivation-
The best leaders always observe the reports related to the project of innovation. In some cases, the innovators lose perspective and motivation. They have to know what is valuable and important to them.
They work as partners for sharing the outcome and risks. In the field of innovation, no one can predict the right answers. Thus, the conventional leader-follower relationship may not be useful. The best innovation leaders consult with the team of innovators and demonstrate commitment and dedication to innovation.
There are various ways in fostering innovation with the skillful leaders-
- Asking questions and taking the challenges of innovation
- Encouraging the team members to prototype fresh ideas
- Taking time for connecting with the mentor or coach and challenging their thinking tactics
- Finding the potential of every team member for embracing innovation
Thus, we can conclude that design thinking helps in improving leadership and is important to drive more innovations in an organization.
Businesses and organizations of all scopes, systems, and divisions establish frequent and numerous strategies to evaluate their internal procedures, assist developments and revolution, and administer implementation and its influence. Organizations are witnessing constant change and innovation. It is through project management that such transformations and changes are achievable.
Project management is the approach to supervise and aid projects. Working on projects is usually distinct from the routine normal business operations. Hence, project management requires a distinct approach and set of skills. Prevailing and effectual project management methodology demand proficiencies that stimulate the seamless integration of effective governance, team management, and standard operating procedure within an organization.
Project management not just lays emphasis on technical skills, but also on soft skills like effective communication, team-building, leadership, and so on. It equips organizations with a robust and sustained approach to endure and flourish progressively in today’s macro and cyber-space world. A successful project management warrants quality and contingent outcome within the stipulated time, resource, and expenditure. The demand for project managers is increasing as various organizations are heading in the direction of making improvements and implementing new software systems Come rain or shine, project management is unalterable.
Does this incline and drive you to go beyond the norm pattern and adopt a contemporary one? Are you confident enough to vie with projects of any magnitude? Do you believe you have the leadership quality that can succor the challenges to lucratively achieve business objectives?
Get in touch to know if this course harmonizes your aspiration.
Thanks to the latest technological advancements, project management has never been easier. With the growing number of online programs for project management available for almost any device, just about anyone can have access to intuitive and sophisticated project management training. Online programs for project management help in coordinating the planning, executing, and tracking of a project. Depending on how refined the program is, it can include, but is not limited to, resource allocation, scheduling, quality management, budget control, and communication.
The Benefits of Online Programs for Project Management
This is how online programs for project management can help an organization:
- Plan and forecast like a boss – Planning and organizing a project, even before it has actually begun, is a very crucial step of project management to get right. With features such as reporting, various charts and boards, scheduling, and checklists available in most online project management programs, this job has never been easier. Once tasks have been delegated to team members, one has the ability to keep track of the activities to ensure nothing is missed. The centralized space project management online programs mean all tasks, resources and activities are kept together and are cohesive. This gives the team a clear overview of the tasks that need to be completed in order to achieve the objectives of the project.
- Deliver work with ease – Anyone who’s ever worked on any type of group project knows how challenging it can be. Trying to hear and consider different opinions and ideas, and ensuring everyone is focused on the same goal can be tricky if there are no guidelines put in place, or some guidelines for everyone to follow. Using project management online programs can ensure people’s voices will be heard, and that everyone is at their best. Smartphone and tablet accessibility of the project management program will accommodate team members working remotely, so they never miss an update.
- Bring team members closer together – Although team members are given individual tasks, what they’re each working on is essentially part of a bigger project. Online project management programs foster collaboration as they provide a space where colleagues can give status updates, share files, and communicate on any given matter. With everybody using the same method, it ensures that everyone involved is on the same page, and working towards the same objectives.
- Keep your pockets lighter – Implementing, and introducing the organization to an online project management program, will come at an expense, however it is something that one simply cannot afford not to have. Online programs are a cost-effective tool that not only help with planning and tracking budget to ensure it won’t be exceeded, but they can also save the business a bulk of money in the long run. With less chances of mistakes happening — due to a set guideline and procedure in place with all its monitoring and reporting features — it could save resources, time, and labor, as well as keep the business under budget.
- Improve the overall process – Online project management programs bridge the gap between the client’s expectation and the organization’s meeting, or surpassing, them. It provides organization to an otherwise disorganized process, which welcomes feedback, and helps reduce risk. With all the project administration taken care of, it gives room to ensure that not only is the team happy with their work, but also the relationship with clients and stakeholders is where the organization wants it to be.
The core aim of online programs for project management is to load an organization with tools so that it can keep on top of tasks, and have room to explore ideas to further develop its service. Having an organized structure to keep everything in place will allow the employees and the company to achieve their project goals effectively and efficiently. While there may be some obstacles along the way, having a good program to learn from, will offer the support to fix any issues, and put everything back in place with ease.
Business management is that area which provides information and training related to the planning, execution, supervision and analysis of a business enterprise. Business management is defined as managing the coordination and organization of business activities of an organization. Management involves planning, directing, organizing, and controlling the business’s resources so they can meet the needs and objectives of the organization. Business management is simply the management of a business. It includes all aspects of overseeing and supervising various business operations. In this article, we are going to talk about online business management programs.
Online Business Management Programs
This is how online business management programs benefit an organization –
- Focus on what truly matters – Entrepreneurs and small business owners have a lot to learn and do. But as the business begins to chart its growth, it is important for the manager to grow out of many of these roles. When an organization makes use of an online business management program to focus on core operations, the manager can find the time and bandwidth to focus on high-growth areas of the business.
- Don’t miss opportunities – A time crunch means missed business opportunities and doing the business great harm in the future. For instance, one may come across a project that is great for future prospects but the manager simply does not have the time for it. When an organization uses an online business management program that focuses on crucial business areas, the employees can take out the time to take on more projects, more business, and more growth.
- Smooth project management – It is often expected of managers to be multi-taskers, but it is important to remember that in an attempt to do everything at once, we often spread our focus so much that nothing gets the attention that it deserves, and all tasks fail. Juggling the tasks of tracking budgets, managing timelines, coordinating action, etc. will not only lead to burn out, but the pivotal task of building a business will bear the consequences of it all. An organization should let an online business management program handle the details by taking over project management while the employees do what they do best. This will also allow the organization to take on several projects at a time.
- Team issues handled – It could often get frustrating to keep one’s eyes all over the place and come back to answering the team members’ queries. Entrepreneurs often find themselves complaining about how tiring it is addressing all these issues, however great the team maybe. Online business management programs may help by providing training on handling these issues, so time and energy of both the manager and the employees is not wasted.
- Simple communication flows – To administer a business as smoothly as possible, clear communication is the most important aspect. However, it is important that communication be clear not just with clients and customers but also among the employees and their managers. When an online business management program is used to be in direct contact with the team at all times, the task of sending out critical information is simplified. One does not have to waste precious time explaining details to every team member since the online program will do it for you.
- Building customer rapport – Striking the right chord with one’s customers is the cornerstone of an organization’s success. Maintaining proper and regular customer interaction is important to any and every business. This involves prompt, quick and hassle-free communication over social media, e-mails or phone. An online business management program can help in providing training in this area so that better communication can lead to better rapport with the customers.
Online business management programs are a great deal of help if an organization wants to succeed. Online programs are not only convenient regarding time and place, but also help with many other functions that make daily business chores easier.
Creativity – Developing It As A Competency
The inherent concept of creativity holds that it involves the production of new ideas and high quality, original, and classic solutions to problems. It is believed that creativity and innovation are important for the growth and performance of organizations. Organizations today work in a highly competitive, global environment, making creativity essential. Creativity is what kindles big ideas, provokes employees’ way of thinking, and paves ways to new business opportunities, since creative leaders are at ease with ambiguity.
- Narrow restrained and conservative
- May be more comfortable with the past, prefer the used
- Curbed background
- Avoids taking risk and doesn’t go around for being bold or different
- Doesn’t connect with ideas from outside own work area
- May have no understanding of how creativity works
- Uses the same old solutions for new problems
- May chill the creative actions of others
- Comes up with a lot of unique and innovative ideas
- Easily makes connections among previously unrelated approaches
- Tends to be original and useful in creative settings
Overused Skill –
- May get so captivated with marginally productive ideas that they tend to waste time
- May get involved in multiple things at the same time
- May not give reaction after the idea
- May be confused or disorganized at detail
- May be an introvert and not a good team player
- May not communicate well to those less creative
Creativity – thinking out of Box as a competency
Creativity in business is an important first step that needs to be given priority by senior leadership. It has been ranked as a major factor for future business success. As businesses continue to evolve, their goals and priorities will need to change. Not all organizations are equipped to deal with the transformation. Companies are selling experiences, and those experiences need to be well-designed. Creativity lends itself to that and inspires good design. Here are some ways they can foster creativity within the organization –
- Reward Creativity – Not every idea will be a success, but big improvements won’t occur if the company plays it safe. Executives need to be comfortable with failure and give employees the freedom and flexibility to experiment with and explore new opportunities. Companies that reward creativity show they value it, inspiring individuals within the organization to pursue unproven theories and concepts
- Hire the Right People – The right people here aren’t just creatives. Organizations should instead lay stress on diversity, bringing in a variety of viewpoints, cultural backgrounds, and skill sets. Each person who solves problem, who works to understand and form relationships with each individual customer, adds to the overall creativeness. Since everyone can’t be creative, most people can learn the techniques for being innovative. It is also worth considering building an innovation team, whose role is to grasp creative energies to develop new products, services, or processes within an organization
- Try Flexible Work Hours – The traditional nine-to-five schedule doesn’t suit everyone. Offering flexible arrangements, such as the ability to work from home, helps in making employees healthier, happier, and more productive. If employees are aware of expectations, complete their work on time, and coordinate appropriately with their team, it’s an easy way to test and enable everyone to work when they’re feeling most creative, as opposed to a set time during the day
- Give Employees Time to Recharge – Creativity can lead to exhaustion and stress. Employees need time to step back and refresh themselves. Organizations need to take this into consideration, and maybe take some time between projects or offer some sort of break to recharge their employees
Whether you’re a top-level leader, aspiring manager, or manager, you’re always concerned about improving your competencies that are needed to become an effective and respected leader. To realize this dream, you need to understand various leadership competencies and work towards imbibing them in you and your character. In general terms, competencies can be defined as knowledge, ability, or skill that can either be developed or taught. The best part about the competencies is that they come with ‘indicators’ meaning that they can be observed and measured. A model developed on these competencies can be effectively linked to excellence in the context of an organization.
Using a model that is based on competencies, organizations can set up their strategies and vision. Using the framework thus developed, organizations can hire, develop, and measure leaders on various parameters. When these competencies are taken into account by organizations, the progress, and development they make get displayed for everyone to see and experience. Therefore, it is important that both organizations and individuals understand what these competencies are and how they can be employed to takes businesses to a new level.
Creativity is one of the most important leadership competencies a leader can possess
Problems can arrive from nowhere in business. This is why managers need to be creative in their thinking and application to take them head on and lead their organization to success. Also, given that business environments keep changing rapidly, the problems posed by them can have different dimensions. This is where tried and tested methods fail to work for leaders. The need of the hour in such circumstances is to be creative. Thankfully for leaders there are many creative problem-solving aids, like lateral thinking, brainstorming, etc. that can be employed to ease the situation and bring success to the company.
As a leader, there are a few ways how you can demonstrate your creativity at the workplace. Here are some of them:
- First, you need to remove all the constraints that are preventing you from being creative. You need to be confident about yourself and then allow yourself to think and act in a different way
- To get creative personally, you need to dedicate yourself to the problems. To get unique and brilliant ideas you can’t rush on to the things. In fact, you need to look into things deeply
- For creative ideas and processes to come out of you, there are no set rules or logic that has to be followed. Sometimes, it can be as simple as unearthing relevant information, jumping one idea to another, etc
Leadership competencies like creativity may be lacking in a few leaders. How do you know when this happens? Here are some symptoms:
- Being conservative, cautious, and tactical
- Using tried and tested solutions for unique problems
- Avoiding risks
- Getting involved in too many things at a time
There are a few behavioral indicators that help develop creativity in managers. Here are some of these indicators:
- Maintaining an entrepreneurial spirit and encouraging others to go ahead with ‘smart’ risks
- Challenges the status quo relentlessly to force some improvement
- Motivating others to be resourceful and proactive
Some Remedies –
- Remove the Restraints – Being creative means looking everywhere. Being creative takes time. It involves moving out of your comfort zone. Many busy people rely too much on solutions from their past. There is no need to change who you are and what you’re comfortable with other than when you need to be more creative. Then think and act in a different manner, try new things; break free from your restraints
- Think Out Loud – Many people don’t realize what they know until they speak up. Find a good audience and talk to them to increase your understanding of a problem. Talk to an expert or the most insolent person you know. Your goal is to figure out what you know
- Apply Some Standard Problem-Solving Skills – There are several ways to think through and solve a problem more creatively. Usually, we jump to solutions based on what has worked in the past. Difficult problems are hard to solve unless they are put in a visual format. They need to be broken up into components and then examined to see if a different order would help, or how you could combine them into one. Another technique is to depict a problem as pictures or to tell stories that illustrate the pros and cons of the problem, and then make a chart of what’s working and what’s not. Taking periodic breaks helps the brain to continue to work on the issue. Most developments come when we’re not thinking about it or giving it to someone else
- Defining the Problem – Instant and early solutions and how we solved it in the past are the rivals of creativity.
Describing the problem and acting together for most people, so the more effort you put in initially, the easier it is to come up with a breakthrough solution. First define what the problem is and isn’t. Since providing answers and solutions is so easy for everyone, it would be better if they were giving solutions to the right problem. Find out what causes it. Keep asking why, as this increases the chance of a more creative solution because you can see more connections. Ask lots of questions. Allot much time to define the problem better and always think of varied solutions before you pick one.
- Increasing Group Creativity – Usually that teams with the widest diversity of backgrounds produce the most creative solutions to problems. Get the widest group you can when dealing with a difficult problem which has lost attempts to solve. Try to add in colleagues from other organizations. Since you’re looking for fresh approaches, it doesn’t matter if they don’t know anything about the problem or the technology required to deal with it. A genuine technique to enable creativity is brainstorming. When the problem gets defined in the same old way, it leads to a waste of time, silly ideas and nothing practical happening. So, define the problem well first, and then invest much time to sketch the problem
- Analogies – Many creative solutions come from analogies to nature or other fields. Come up with a list (cats, trees, the sea, biology, shipbuilding), and use it after you describe the problem to the group in the first or second option. Many times, this will strike creative ideas that no other process will
- Experiment and Learn – Whether the ideas come from you or a brainstorming session, motivate yourself to do quick experiments and trials. Studies show that most innovations occur in the wrong place, are created by the wrong people and the most successful innovators try lots of quick experiments to increase the chances of success
Creativity encourages employees to work with each other. As they have new ideas, they seek out colleagues for their feedback. The most important benefit of the creative process is that it encourages collaboration. The only thing companies can’t do is ignore creativity altogether or hope the problem will solve itself. Creativity needs to be prioritized.
Design Thinking Training
Design thinking is what goes through a designer’s mind during every designing project. It is a powerful thinking tool that can be used to drive a business, brand or individual forward. It aids in maximizing the use of available resources by utilizing them effectively. Design thinking helps solve problems in a way that the solution is scalable, be it a product or a service. It is a technique that can be additional to the thinking strategies that an individual has practiced and hence only needs consistent practice to become apparent and effective.
Growing organizations would do well to invest in Design thinking training since it brings in customer focus, unleashes creative potential and encourages taking calculated risks in order reach innovation. Design thinking training starts with evaluating the practices that are currently followed by the individual or organization. Then the trainees are introduced to the principles of design thinking which are: it seeks to define the problem well as much as it does to find the solution, it aids ideation and exploring solutions, it is collaborative and encourages iterative prototyping, it can be used to solve a wide range of problems, it involves a method that enables empathy with others. The training also delves into the complex problems that design thinking can be used to solve when other thinking strategies fall short, since design thinking is capable of handling problems that are poorly defined, lack information to define a solution, has dynamic context and a focus on human needs.
The trainees are introduced to activities where design thinking techniques can be applied. Consistent application of design thinking is the secret to its long-term implementation and integration into practice; hence the practice of the principles is an integral part of training. One activity for instance can be to identify one key area an individual wants to find a solution for using the design thinking technique by putting across questions like what are the innovations that inspire you, what are the problems you face on a daily basis, and how do you think using design thinking will help you solve this problem. This activity can be conducted for teams in organizations so that team members gain fresh perspective from each other, give bold new ideas, promote team spirit and allow teammates to become invested in each other’s innovative ideas and challenges. This improves team cohesion and promotes collaborative behavior. Feedback can be taken at the end of the session and after a period of three to six months to gauge how well the strategy has been integrated into work functions by the teams.
Design thinking training enables innovation and hence integrated into organizational practices allows the institution to maintain competitive advantage. It also aids in solving operational issues within an organization, which increases efficiency in the functioning of the organization. Design thinking training allows design thinking to be effectively incorporated into the organizational practices and culture, which promotes effectiveness, efficiency and innovation.
Design thinking is a systematic process of developing business cases and prototypes for innovative solutions to common problems. Design Thinking helps the organizations to bring together market realities, a deep understanding of customer problems to create new solutions, products, and services for the customers to improve their experience with the organization.
It also supports organizations to create a culture that encourages innovation. Having a culture which thrives on innovation is a good thing because employees will get the creative freedom and will motivate them to think out of the box. Innovation is no longer a strategic choice of a few organizations. It is necessary for business continuity in almost every industry. Nowadays, organizations have to innovate the business model they are working on so that they can remain relevant and competitive in the market. As the business is always dynamic, it is important to continuously upgrade oneself and bring innovative solution to the problems that organization. To cope with the pace and quantum of change required, organizations are continuously looking for a structured process that can make Innovation programs predictable & effective. Design Thinking enables that. Since Design Thinking is a structured process, it creates a map for the individual where the destinations are predictable which makes the process more reliable. Unlike discoveries and inventions which are basically an outcome of chance or accident, design thinking results in innovative solutions for customer’s problems and desires regarding to any service, product, etc. Design-thinking is a step wise process where each step is taken by keeping the unmet needs and desires of the end-user or customer in mind. This process can be repeated and can bring favourable outcomes which will resolve the problems of the customer. The design thinking process has a wide application with steps that can be generalized and applied for all products and services across industries countries.
There are multiple certification courses available for Design Thinking. These courses enable people to learn the five stages of design thinking which will help them to understand the process and solve the customer’s problem through That. Those stages also enable people to develop new and innovative solutions to the problem. Design Thinking also enables people to be empathetic to customers on order to understand their pain point and solve the problem. Being empathetic will help in providing solutions which will be customized to the customers. Through design thinking, prototypes can be developed which can be used to see the effectiveness of the product or service. If it works well then it can be released for the wider audience.
Strengthscape provides a certification course on Design Thinking. Strengthscape’s Design Thinking Certification program enables Trainers, Internal Innovation Champions and Innovators get a deep understanding of the process of innovation, design and implement innovative programs in organizations and conduct training programs that promote a Culture of Innovation. It will be a closed group, high intensity workshop which focuses on building the skill of innovation through a journey of experiences. This program train people to understand each stage and use that in the organization to develop innovative solutions.
You may be a team leader or a corporate owner. One of the most important traits is that you should have been your inquisitive mindset. At the same time, you need to take the responsibility of starting the learning journey of your team members. To make this journey smoother and easier, you can rely on design thinking training.
The training will help in learning the way of applying the design thinking process for your organization and team. You may have an individual goal or need to direct your team through purpose. In all these cases, the design thinking training in Bangalore enables you in defining, activating and articulating your purpose.
Design thinking- To solve various complicated issues
- Learn the process of design thinking – Learn the right technique of design thinking process, and this will be effective for managing business issues. You will also be able to have user-focused solutions
- Know the needs of customers – For having the user insights, you may apply the industry processes and tools. You can make out the customer needs, while finding out their problems
- Building the prototypes – Develop and test the prototypes for analyzing the user experience
Who must enroll themselves for design thinking training?
Team members, associated in any type of industry, can choose this training, when they think of
- Creating a more customer-centric and collaborative team
- Finding out their innovative potential
To undergo the training, it is better to create a team of 5 to 20 members.
Design Thinking, intended for more innovation
The training course will help you to learn the design thinking process and the reason behind this approach for the success of your business. You may find out your innovative ability to manage the activities on design thinking. You will identify the way of gaining an insight and empathy for your customers. Apply this learning to the right approach.
There are various processes related to design thinking. Your trainers will help you to simplify those processes and use them at the right time. The professional trainers also guide you in using effective techniques and tools for design thinking.
Design thinking – What are the major aspects?
We have talked about various steps, common to design thinking-
- Challenge – Illustrate the challenge of innovative design with targeted queries for users
- Ideas – Find more ideas for creative design
- Action – Communicate and validate the innovation
Your trainer will help you to go through these steps.
Most of the organizations will benefit from the design thinking training. The innovative companies can know about the best techniques to work together and to generate new concepts. Surely, innovative always has a value in all the companies.
As one of the employees or leaders, you must be collaborative and interactive. Thus, during the training program, you will face various design thinking scenarios and find the tricks of applying innovative to your company. Now, you can look for the best training center in Bangalore to learn about the design thinking process.
Design Thinking Workshop for Businesses – A Strategy for Innovation, Creative Problem Solving and
Groundbreaking innovators like Steve Jobs and Thomas Edison used the problem-solving process popularly known as “design thinking” which revolutionized industries and established an enviable competitive advantage for their companies. It is a methodology that can be used to solve complex problems and a way to explore ideal future states through intuition and systemic reasoning. The end user or customer is always kept first and foremost in this process.
This human-centered approach meets the unmet and unarticulated needs of the customers and businesses always win when they have the loyalty of their customers.
While the popularity of this approach is increasing in the business world, it is not an easy task to implement it. There is a need to invest in educating staff, getting managers on board and getting the team on board around the advantages of design thinking. One way to do this is by organizing Design thinking workshops for businesses.
In these increasingly complex times, innovation and collaboration skills are becoming highly essential to businesses and both principles form the essence of design thinking.
Based on a creative approach, design thinking workshops for businesses inspire an atmosphere of teamwork, collaboration and innovation by immersing participants in team-building processes and dynamic discussion that requires out of the box thinking.
Design thinking workshop for businesses is aimed towards developing innovation in the company, building a better understanding of customer needs and implementing a new collaboration of culture. They are ideal for professionals in businesses who are tasked with problem solving and developing new approaches to find solutions. It is also particularly useful for teams who are looking to tackle organizational design challenges.
Some of the topics covered in design thinking workshops for businesses include introduction to the processes and tools to drive innovation, understanding the role of people in successful design thinking, learning about different tools to create solutions and application of design thinking methodology to specific challenges.
Below are some other ways to organize an impactful workshop:
- Setting Objectives: Other than coming up with new products and services for the organization, objectives should also include strengthening beliefs about creative ability, support a sense of progress, seeing failure as an opportunity to learn along with gaining insights on from customers and consumers.
- Pre-Scope Problems: Successful workshops should focus on real world problems affecting businesses that are specific enough to be tackled and should enable venturing into the field of creativity to create solutions
- Preparing Resources: Approachable and common materials should be used allowing all to partake without barriers. The workshop facilitator too should have experience in the subject. Human creativity should be used as an important tool instead of just relying on software
- Ending with Reflection: There should be time for reflection at the end to allow for the workshop to not just be interesting but an opportunity for thoughtful reflection as well. Design principles for the solutions and the process can be brainstormed in the reflection
Successful calibration of design thinking into the business can be a great challenge but if done right, design will be a core competency that will help businesses and services stand out from the rest, with great rewards.
Businesses and firms today recognize the never-ending need for innovation to not only survive, but also thrive in the market. There has been a growing fascination and appreciation for the design thinking process which allows creative problem solving, leading to solutions that are human-centric and which enable dynamic innovation.
A key principle of design thinking is cross-functional collaboration. However, statistics paint a grim picture: 75% of cross functional teams are dysfunctional. This is because most companies have compartmentalized divisions that have little to no experience of collaboration. When an effort is made to build a cross-functional team, the manager fails to identify the shared goals and values that individual members from diverse departments can work towards, together. Thus, companies have to rely on external assistance, experts who can build efficient cross-functional teams.
Simply forming a cross-functional team does not guarantee innovation, however. Yes, when built right, cross-functional teams are successful in delivering innovative solutions nearly 76% of the time. But, unless given an opportunity to understand the manner of approaching, and then subsequently solving a problem, such teams will remain redundant in their efforts. This is where design thinking workshops come in.
Design thinking workshops give you the confidence to think creatively, no strings attached. It allows you to connect seemingly unrelated dots, go beyond the boundaries and look at the problems in a unique way. Teams and individuals who attend design thinking workshops come out teeming with creative ideas and a new approach to innovative problem solving.
So, how can you design a successful design thinking workshop? Here are some key points:
- Getting into the right mindset: it’s important to remember the goal of the workshop. If you are organizing the workshop to introduce the design thinking process, make sure you give the participants enough opportunities to engage in the process themselves. Keep time for activities, brainstorming sessions etc. If the workshop is organized keeping a specific goal in mind, for example, coming up with an innovative solution for your company or a particular client, allow your team members to take the stage and put forward their individual ideas and solutions.
- Don’t try to do too much: Too much of anything is never good. In the fear of missing out on activities, we end up cramming the workshop. This leads to mediocre delivery of the workshop and the participants feel dissatisfied. One way to structure the activities is to organize them as approximately 90 minute slots. An example of such a slot could be:
- 10 min: Set up the activity. Introduce it to the participants.
- 10 min: Once an understanding of activity is achieved, participants begin
- 30 min: Participants perform the activity
- 15 min: Teams reflect on what they have achieved
- 15 min: Sharing the results and engaging in group discussions
- 10 min: Taking a break and reassembling for next activity
- Keep interesting and varied activities: Don’t bore the participants with PowerPoint presentations. Instead, keep short, interesting activities that engage the participants. Examples of fun yet illuminating activities could be:
- Creating journey maps
- Play a “board game” that uses elements of the problem you’re trying to solve
- Organize a field trip
- Build prototypes
- Keep enough time for reflection and discussion: Simply playing out activity after activity does not guarantee a successful workshop. Reflecting and chalking out the learning from each activity is equally important. It’s crucial to include time to discuss and deliberate over the results of the activities and tasks. This opens up the arena for more related ideas and might even lead someone to a creative and innovative solution
- Embrace criticism: Simply discussing and brainstorming over ideas is not enough for a design thinking workshop to be successful. One must also be ready to face any unexpected problems, queries, line of thought etc that may emerge during the workshop. You may also be confronted with conflicting idea and views. Someone may not agree to your perspective, and that’s okay. What is important is to acknowledge that criticism and learn from it, and make others learn from it too
There are various resources available to help you organize a successful design thinking workshop for your team. These resources can help you to learn about design thinking as well as use to solve business problems or develop innovative products and services.
Some resources available are as follows:
- Stanford d School Bootcamp Bootleg
- Ideo’s Human-centered Design Kit
- Google Design Sprint Kit
- Circular Design Guide
Each of the above gives you an immersive experience of the design thinking process which enriches your design thinking workshop. It also provides for your participants valuable insights into design thinking thereby enriching their creativity and promoting innovation.
Design Thinking Workshop for Businesses
Design thinking can be defined as a structured method utilized by designers in order to develop and deliver innovative products, services, and experiences, which directly address the hidden human needs. Design thinking principles are especially useful for today’s business and corporate giants. Using design thinking, businesses are empowered to develop low-cost working prototypes for various human requirements and test them in real time. Design thinking can also be inculcated in your executives by organizing design thinking workshop for businesses.
Design thinking is applied on intricate problems, which are difficult to decipher. Adopting design thinking gives a major advantage to the organizations, by helping them transform their cultures and become more innovative. In a nutshell, design thinking is most likely to have a positive impact on your business and its opportunities.
The best way to infuse design thinking into the minds of your employees is via regularly organizing design thinking workshops. The primary goal of a design thinking workshop for businesses is to ensure that the company’s innovation and creativity sessions fully leverage the approaches of design thinking. In such a workshop, the teams work together to understand the challenges to their business, analyse market opportunities and prepare an exhaustive list of ideas, problems, and prospective solutions. The next step comprises of prioritizing this list of ideas and designing the prototypes of shortlisted business solutions.
The design thinking process closely resembles the traditional innovation pipeline, which includes transforming raw ideas into tangible solutions for the success of a business. The only difference lies in the foundation of design thinking, i.e., its customer-centricity.
Key takeaways from a design thinking workshop:
- Design thinking workshops help inculcate a new approach of how to extract and translate useful data into creative insights that can help you build innovative solutions, which can connect deeply with the needs of the customers.
- Such workshops ignite new confidence among your employees and encourage them to be comfortable while utilizing their creative vigour. Thus, a milieu of creativity is established at the workspace.
- Design thinking workshops provide novel abilities to solve intricate business problems. It further reduces the risk by quickly designing testing platforms, where such solutions can be implemented.
Design thinking workshops have different positive impacts on different organizations. Innovative companies utilize design thinking to learn novel techniques for collaboration, idea generation, processing, and a whole new way of thinking about the process of innovation. Organizations who did not consider their company as being in the innovative spectrum are clearly shown that the spark of innovation is present in every company. Their employees’ mindsets are shifted towards being much more innovative and collaborative. To fulfil such objectives, they are provided with specific design thinking tools and case studies to elaborate on how innovation and creativity can be utilized effectively in their company. Design thinking and its workshops have truly revolutionized the current business scenarios. The companies adopting the teachings of such workshops are poised to see huge gains soon.
Here are 4 important considerations to keep a tab on, while planning to organize the design thinking workshop for businesses:
- Design thinking shows the guiding principle, not the process: As aforementioned, design thinking is an approach and not a tool or technique to achieve the desired outcome. Design thinking provides addon principles like customer centricity, innovative experimentation, greater collaboration, and quick iterations, but it nowhere specifies a cooked-up process to develop a magic wand that will solve such intricate business problems. Design thinking encourages the employees to venture the fields of creativity and find out the solution to the most complex problems.
Furthermore, design thinking can be thought of as a common framework whose sole purpose is to ensure customer obsession throughout the journey of design and development. Thus, it subtly transforms the mindset of the company’s R&D department, so that it can be more customer centric
- Align the design thinking workshop to your business objectives: Depending on your business goals, there’s a wide range of design thinking workshops that may suit your company. If you’re a beginner in your domain of business, your objectives may be to capture customers and market opportunities. Later, you may aim to capture various impressive project ideas and quickly prioritize them as per the needs. The key to embark on the journey of organizing a successful workshop is to identify such objectives and then via various sessions, target them one by one. Further, setting the correct agenda for each session in terms of the key focus areas is very essential. Once you have taken care of the above factors, it will be quite easy for you to communicate this to your target audience
- Choosing key workshop facilitators and attendees: Now, having clearly defined the business objectives and the scope of the design thinking workshop, you must invite the most suitable subject matter expert to attend the workshop. These attendees can be from your employee or client’s group. Workshop facilitators are expected to have a good experience in facilitating such kind of sessions. Considering an ideal situation, a good facilitator should have tens of successfully facilitated design thinking workshops for business under their belt. An important thing regarding the attendees, try to make a cross-functional team so that innovative ideas can be collected from the experts of diverse domains and backgrounds
- Don’t be totally dependent on software: When it comes to design thinking workshop, it’s a game of creativity and thinking out of the box. It’s the test of how much you can stretch your thinking cap. So, it is a bad idea to jump immediately to the software selection process. While software can be extremely useful to reach a solution, experts believe that a great design thinking workshop must consist of equal contributions from the people and the technology. It is very essential to let the human brain search for creative solutions to the problems.
Complex problems can be solved using design principles through a process called design thinking. Opportunities and innovations can be unlocked by organizations to improve the businesses with the help of this process.
Leaders in the market such as Apple, IBM and Nike have used design thinking to gain a competitive advantage while using it to generate innovative products and services. Within an organization, design thinking can enable facilitation of cultural change in the organization and makes companies more flexible and responsive to their consumers’ needs and demands thus, winning customer loyalty and ultimately reaping great rewards.
The key elements of design thinking include some variation on the following:
- Researching and defining the problem- The ultimate goal of researching Human-centered research techniques is to analyze and understand the consumer needs
- Ideating: Generating ideas that can lead to potential solutions through tools like sketching, brainstorming, mind mapping, etc.
- Prototyping and Iterating: Creating prototypes of demonstrate idea and putting it up for tests
Transforming businesses into design-centric company may not be an easy journey but it is of extreme importance for innovation to thrive within the organization. To promote a design-centric culture, investment, strategic intent and commitment from senior leadership and board members is a prerequisite. Training across organization through design thinking workshops for businesses is a great means to penetrate this culture into the organization.
Design thinking workshops for businesses would equip participants with the tools and methodology of design thinking and enable them to apply these tools for problem solving, facilitate grasping of the design thinking mindset and understand core concepts like empathy, prototyping, brainstorming, etc.
Some of the important principles that need to be adhered at a design thinking workshop for businesses are:
- Communication is key
- Pre-scope goals
- Involve stakeholders and participants
- Reflection and outlining of next steps
- Purpose of place
A design thinking workshop for businesses would comprise of an intensive preliminary session on clarifying the concept and process of design thinking. Instead of relying heavily on software, in-person workshops are recommended which can ignite progress on the team’s project through its social energy, engaging dynamic and intense focus.
Collaboration is key and it is recommended that ideas should be reflected upon as a team through collaborative activities and it needs to be ensured that everyone has had a chance to be heard. Common understating will be developed of the problem and as well as of aspects concerning user’s latent needs, target audience, etc. It is suggested that work should be observed in the user’s natural context in the case of design thinking workshop for businesses.
The workshop will result in creation and validation of a prototype which can be used for further iteration in the process of innovation.
Design thinking workshops will be very effective in enabling businesses to understand and apply human-centered techniques and principles in understanding and resolving problems by helping in coming up with creative and innovative solutions through ideation sessions and then moving on to prototyping and usability testing thus, generating multiple solutions in a short span of time. Businesses will identify new ways to meet the latent needs of their customers and tell compelling story to engage their audiences thus, increasing their profits.
Design thinking is a creative process of developing business cases and prototypes for innovative solutions. The objective of design thinking is to take a systematic approach to finding unique solutions to common problems.
Innovation is no longer a strategic choice of a few organizations. It has become crucial for businesses to involve. Organizations are under constant pressure to innovate their business model, products and services not just to remain competitive but also relevant. To cope with the pace and quantum of change required, organizations are continuously looking for a structured process that can make innovation programs predictable & effective. For this, organizations require consultants and facilitators who can run them through this process of innovation and cultural change.
A Design Thinking Certification program enables Trainers, Internal Innovation Champions and Innovators get a deep understanding of the process of innovation and design. By joining a Design Thinking Expert Certification followed by the Design Thinking Facilitator certification, participants will engage in intensive group and individual work, developing their skills as Design Thinking Facilitators. They will be able to develop deep empathy for customer situations, a way to seek inspiration from the world around us and a business mind to define common problems and innovative products & services.
Characteristics of Design Thinking
- A Structured Process – Design thinking is a systematic approach to new development whether products, services or business models. The output of each step becomes the input for the next.
- People-centred – Design thinking process approaches each step by keeping the unmet needs and desires of the end-user or customer in mind.
- Predictable – Since Design Thinking is a structured process, it creates a map for the person wherein the stops and the destination are predictable.
- Repeatable – Unlike discoveries and inventions that are an outcome of chance and in fact, accident, design thinking results in innovative solutions for customer pains and aspirations. It is a process that can be repeated at will and promises favourable outcomes.
- Globally accepted – The design thinking process has a wide application with steps that can be generalized and applied for all products and services across industries countries.
About Design Thinking Certification Program
Design Thinking certification is for those who want to take the responsibility of driving innovation and growth in organization. The program is designed to create facilitators and help them add another feather to their hat by providing requisite model, tools, strategies and methodologies so that they can independently help organizations to develop prototypes and support organizations in their expedition to create something innovative.
It is a closed group, high-intensity, classroom workshop that focuses on building the skill of the facilitator through an experiential journey. This journey will empower the facilitators to gain insights through a structured process of peer-learning and master the facilitation of design thinking in varied industries.
How is Design Thinking Certification Beneficial for you?
On gaining this certification, facilitators will be able to conduct the following:
- Culture of Innovation: Facilitate programs to help organizations imbibe a culture of innovation and empower its employees to sustain it
- Design Thinking Workshop: Facilitate programs to help organizations adopt and apply the powerful process of design thinking
- Role of leadership in Innovation: Facilitate programs to clarify the role of leadership in the process of innovation and provide leaders with tools and techniques to build innovation as a strategic advantage for the organization
- Training Innovation Champions: Facilitate programs to train employees who lead or participate in innovation projects in an organization
Design thinking helps the organizations to bring together market realities, a deep understanding of customer problems and business aspirations to create new products and services. It also supports organizations to imbibe a culture that encourages innovation.
Design Thinking Certification – Packages Available
- Design Thinking Expert Certification: The 2-day in-person experiential workshop provides in-depth understanding on design thinking and FOOS methodology
- Design Thinking Facilitator Certification: Our facilitator certification is for those who have completed the first level of expert certification. In this 2-day in-person experiential session, get hands-on experience on facilitating design thinking and apply the principles in managing innovative projects
Models and Methodology
Strengthscape’s Design Thinking program focuses on two broad areas of impact – your ability to facilitate design thinking programs and your facilitation skills. The parallel track on facilitation skills is enabled by Strengthscape’s DANCER Methodology which has been illustrated below. Learn the DANCER method of facilitation along with a set of more than 20 techniques for achieving group objectives.
Here are the benefits of the DANCER methodology:
|Capturing the As Is||Participants experience a real-life situation of facilitating a program.|
|Diagnostics||Participants learn the importance of asking questions in facilitation and the types of questions to ask at each step, in order to elicit information and ideas.|
|Diverging and Converging Opinions||Participants shall learn how to diverge and converge opinions to orchestrate group interactions.|
|Creating a Strong Stage Presence||Participants will learn how to upscale their stage presence in an experiential way.|
|Tools and Techniques for Facilitation||Participants shall build and practice a comprehensive inventory of tools and techniques of facilitation for varied outcomes.|
|Play and Engage||Participants shall develop a unique facilitation style with a twist by using art of facilitation skills.|
Certification Course Details
Who should attend this certification?
- Senior/Top Management Executives
- Experienced Project Managers and Innovators
- Senior Human Resource Professionals
- Trainers and Coaches
Strengthscape strives to bring opportunities for facilitating Innovation and Design Thinking projects to the certified facilitators. This certification program takes place few times in a year and therefore, it is with a focused group who have gone through a screening and qualification process. The expert and facilitator certification are a 2-day each classroom, workshop mode programs.
The certification course is for those who have a knack for driving innovation within organizations. Since it is a closed group program, there will be a qualification call with the Master Facilitator before registering for the program.
Post completion of Design Thinking Facilitator Certification, Strengthscape shall provide 2-years of committed support agreement with up to 4 days of support in design and administration of the project. Strengthscape will hand-hold the participants in designing programs for their customers.
- Module 1:
- Introduction to Innovation and Design Thinking
- Culture of Innovation
- Neuroscience of Innovation
- State 1: Charter of Innovation
- Module 2:
- State 2: Inspiration
- Module 3:
- State 3: Ideation
- State 4: Concepts
- Module 4:
- State 5: FOOS