The postindustrial digital age and the emergence of the experience economy have fundamentally changed the requirements and the expectations how companies develop and deliver new services. Well-known brands like Airbnb, Mayo Clinic, Bank of America and HBO have all understood this shift and successfully utilized holistic design thinking approach to transform their business. They have created profitable business through sophisticated, emotionally satisfying and meaningful experiences to their customers.
What is Design Thinking?
Design Thinking can be described as human-centered (designing “with” the users instead of “for” the users), exploratory and integrative innovation process that emphasizes observation, collaboration in interdisciplinary teams, fast learning, visualization of ideas, rapid prototyping, and concurrent business analysis. Design Thinking essentially is a way of thinking, applying designers’ sensibility and methods, leading to transformation, innovation of new products, services, business strategies and even new organizations.
The best part is that you don’t need to be a professional designer to master in Design Thinking. Nevertheless, the following key abilities are important for a Design Thinker:
- visual and divergent thinking
- empathy and cultural sensitivity
- integrative and holistic thinking
- the ability to think in analogies and metaphors
Models and Tools for Design Thinking