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Me, Designer?

Few weeks ago I was super excited to start my Service Innovation and Design studies. Our heterogeneous group seemed to be full of inspiration, motivation and richness from different backgrounds. During those very first days my thoughts started to wonder around and, to be honest, I felt a bit confused: How can I become a designer? Am I able to think like designer?

”(Design thinking is…) Way of thinking which leads to transformation, evolution and innovation, to new forms of living and to new ways of managing business.”

Katja Tschimmel – Design Thinking as an effective Toolkit for Innovation.

The magic of Design Thinking

Design Thinking gives tools to improve more traditional processes and toolkits. It widens the aspects of problem solving. To think like designer, you have to be able to manage different aspects of the problem at the same time, e.g. human needs, materials, technical resources and opportunities. By comparing all these different aspects the result will meet both customers and companies needs.

Christoph Meinel describes in his book “Design Thinking: understand – improve – apply” many sides of design thinking. Design Thinker can transform challenges to be opportunities and explores both the problem and the solution. Traditional thinker concentrates just to solve the problem. The process of Design Thinking is an experimental journey, which can make many turns before reaching the goal.

 Katja Tchimmel compares in her article “Design Thinking as an effective Toolkit for Innovation” characteristics of a Design Thinking Manager and a Traditional Thinking Manager (Table 1). I can definitely find myself from both sides. By thinking these characteristics I can more easily find my self somewhere between traditional thinking and Design thinking. Does this help to clarify your way of thinking?

Ahoy my crew – I’m ready for mind changing adventure!

Main reason to confuse my mind was our first course: Design Thinking. We had two quest lecturers: Gijs van Wulfen from Netherlands and Katja Tschimmel from Portugal. With Gijs and Katja our group was able to take a quick expedition through Design thinking.

Picture 1. The FORTH Innovation Method

Picture 1. The FORTH Innovation Method

We dived into innovation and used FORTH Innovation Method by Gijs van Wulfen (Picture 1). It usually takes 20 weeks to go through this innovation expedition, but we explored it quickly in two intensive days. The mission on FORTH Innovation Method is to create new ideas, choose the best ones, test them and come up with new service concepts. This journey gave good experience how to innovate new ideas and how to transform them into action.

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