Applying a simple, effective 5-step process.
Think like a designer.
Design Thinking means just that - thinking like a designer. This means being curious: asking questions, challenging business-as-usual. As a method this is five steps for digital innovation - delivered iteratively, and fast.
Design Thinking is a people-first way of solving difficult problems. At Being Guided, I help market-facing teams better engage buyside and sellside stakeholders via a five-step method created by the Stanford d.school.
Step 01. Empathize
Empathy Mapping is key.
The first step in our Design Thinking method is key: Empathize. Through online workshops, we ensure that all stakeholders engage in exploring each problem to be solved or value to be created with a value proposition.
This is Empathy Mapping. It means engaging buyers and sellers of high-value solutions, in sessions that encourage openness, receptivity and rapport among all. What follows is trust - and ultimately, truth.
Step 02. Define
Focus on what matters most.
The outputs from Empathy Mapping enable a deeper, more meaningful Define step. Here, all stakeholders work through an Urgent/Important Matrix to prioritise the value proposition validation and problem-solving.
From achieving a more truthful, accurate understanding of the problem, the Define step is in the strongest position to ensure a truthful mapping of this problem to the right solution and move to the next step: Ideate.
Step 03. Ideate
Move to tangible innovation.
The Ideate step is hands-on, based on openness and trust realised at the Define step. This is where stakeholders are encouraged to challenge assumptions, from what is otherwise, just business-as-usual.
Ideation means taking the journey from identifying the problem to exploring a timely value proposition outcome. This will enable the widest range of ideas to be rapidly moved to the next step: Prototype.
Step 04. Prototype
No-Code First is key to success.
The Prototype step is typically framed as a Proof-of-Concept, where the solution is explored in a hands-on way, as an experimental process of iterative investigation, acceptance, improvement or rejection.
The progression from Ideate to Prototype should be fast. Solutions come to life for problem-solving in a tangible, iterative way. This enables a Proof-of-Concept to convert into a time-critical 'Production' outcome.
Step 05. Test
Rapidly drive user acceptance testing.
High-value solutions should continue to rapidly move from the Prototype through to the Test step, as part of continuous improvement. This loop may go back to any step to move innovation forward - faster.
Testing means 'show don't tell' - taking Prototypes through iterative User Acceptance Testing (UAT) of solutions. It is important to continuously engage the broadest set of stakeholders as Users at this step.