“I never design a building before I’ve seen the site and met the people who will be using it.”
–Frank Lloyd Wright
Design thinking is a human centred design method, transforming needs into solutions. Design thinking could be called as a mind-set, a way of using creativity to tackle design problems.
How to solve a problem with design thinking?
Basically designs purpose could be making things easier. Not just easy to use, but making them better, thus making also the world a bit better. To start designing with this method, you need to have people on focus. To achieve this, a designer goes through a process from chaos of problems to implemented solution.
Design process is also a creative process, so first phase is to inspire ideas.
Have people in mind: As we recognized in our scenario exercise, by exploring different characteristics of possible users, you may discover that you need to change your service product in order to meet expectations of future users.
Positive attitude: For us this was an application that would solve all problems when visiting in the museum. Imagine if you could get all information needed just from one application! How easy it would be if you would not need to worry anymore losing your child in the museum because having special tracking systems on your iphone. For sure this will happen in the future, but from now on we are left with our ideas what would be the perfect world .
Brainstorm ideas: Brainstorming different ideas seems to be pretty simple, but in some cases it is easier said and done. How to get from advanced application even more advanced. It could say that our brainstorming work was related to creating different characteristics. By creating different people with different needs we could more easily get wild ideas on how this specific character would use our application.
Try the idea out: In this you can also use imaginary characteristics if “real people” are not available. Try to think how different people would react. And finally, you have new business idea?
What did we learn? Reasons to take Design Thinking in daily practice
why – to allow good change to happen and accelerate it
how – using various design methods to understand the problem and create solutions
what – solve problems with a holistic mindset, with a human centred approach
There are tools to transform ideas into prototypes and prototypes into functioning designs. By using scenarios, characteristics and critical artefacts you will learn from customers’ expectations and perceptions, but also from yourself. Do you want to challenge yourself in order to open up your mind and the inner designer?
To enable any methods, a functioning design group is essential. Well-functioning group needs clear roles, goals and communication. It is vital that everyone communicate effectively in order to produce something new and innovative. This is reflected to the idea that internal communication in the organization is one of the key elements in new service development process.
“Learning by doing”
The process itself sounds to be easy; we got good perspective about what the service design is and the different themes and methods. Different exercises supported the process of getting to know how to use these tools in practice. As stated previously, especially making those different characters really helped us to explore more possible users and different artefacts of the application. Probably more guidance would still be in order, so that there would be clear visions what to do next in the process. Of course in design thinking creativity is a positive thing, but when there is lots of different visions and goals are not set clearly, process will lead to “chaos “ instead of organizing one.
The authors: Teija Hakaoja, Tinja Lindfors, Hugo Molina, Tatjana Odigbo, Suleiman Farah Gedi (HAMK)