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How a Design Thinking Workshop Can Jump-Start New Ideas

Posted by Mark Hemmer on 9/19/16 10:30 AM
Mark Hemmer


Setting aside time to attend a Design Thinking workshop is the best decision you'll make for your business this year and any year. Businesses grow when they're injected with new ideas and challenges are conquered when unique solutions are presented. That's the idea behind a Design Thinking workshop. Based on 'Design Thinking,' this workshop is meant to bring business leaders into a room and equip them with a new way of thinking and results to leave with. 

Fast Company defines Design Thinking like this:

"Design thinking describes a repeatable process employing unique and creative techniques which yield guaranteed results — usually results that exceed initial expectations. Extraordinary results that leapfrog the expected. This is why it is such an attractive, dynamic and important methodology for businesses to embrace today." 

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If you want to jump-start new ideas and position your business to grow, attend a Design Thinking workshop. Here's how it can help:

Embracing New Ideas 

Typically, new ideas in business are greeted with the same warmth as an outsider swinging open saloon doors. That is, plenty of side-eye and a reflexive: 'That's not how we do things around here!' Most people, if asked directly, might claim to be open to change, but it doesn't often hold up in practice. That needs to change. New ideas, risky ideas, unexpected ideas - need to be welcomed. Design Thinking embraces questioning everything - even the question. Again, from Fast Company: "Question; How many designers will it take to screw in a light bulb? Answer; Why a light bulb?" 

Proven Framework

Design Thinking is a process and comes with a protocol. It can be broken up into as few or as many items as makes sense to an individual. But, the basics are:

Identify The Right Problem 

Identifying the 'right problem' requires cutting through assumptions and asking 'why,' until you can't ask it any longer. By questioning even the premise of the problem you're setting out to solve, you might find that you were missing the more important problem the whole time.

Consider Multiple Solutions

'Multiple solutions' includes the seemingly obvious one, the wild one, the not-feasible one, and others. It's important to weight all options equally and genuinely explore, objectively, their pros and cons. By not dismissing anyone's idea, you're allowing for the unexpected. 

Narrow and Nurture

Once all possible solutions have been explored, it's time to choose a few directions and really nurture those concepts. This is the stage where you experiment, test, and modify your chosen solutions. Through this process, the best idea will reveal itself. 

Deliver on the Idea 

After you've selected the best idea, it's time to direct resources towards making it a reality. This is where prototypes are built and beta versions of the idea are released. You learn more about the idea, you modify, you build upon it. 

Culture Change

The end result of Design Thinking, in addition to a valuable idea or solution, is a push toward a better company culture. If company culture is conducive to new ideas, new ideas will thrive. These are also characteristics of organizational innovation: being open to new ideas, fearless in the face of risk, and accepting of change. Design Thinking challenges everyone in an organization to adopt a new way of approaching problems, with the promise of radically successful new solutions. 

Attending a Design Thinking workshop can help new ideas flourish in your business. Find out how you can attend today.


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