The main aim of applying design thinking methods to products and procedures is to change the focus from being product-oriented to customer-oriented, from marketing-centric to user-centric, from engineering-centric to design-centric.
People usually get confused between the two terms “Design” and “Design Thinking”
As it is said by Steve Jobs that most folks think that Design and Design Thinking is one and the same thing. But this is not so. ‘Design’ simply means making the product better in terms of looks and appearances. Whereas ‘Design thinking’ is about applying the discipline to innovation and new technology which will be used in the product by using the designer’s sensibility and understanding.
Applying discipline is very necessary as it will help in burgeoning the right market value of the product.Applying discipline is very necessary as it will help in burgeoning the right market value of the product.
For example, when a student formulates any assignment writing, he has to first think about the design and structure of the assignment and also he has to analyze if the design fits the type of essay so that it may appear attractive to the reader, this approach is called as Design thinking
Factors that are kept in mind while applying Design thinking to products
A designer always keeps in consideration the two factors while applying the design to his product or service –
- Technological feasibility
- Economic viability
The designers always keep in mind these two aspects while designing the product. The technological workability is very important because there is no use of the product if it will look better but the users cannot avail of the services from it. Another factor that is must keep in mind is Economic viability. The designer always analyzes the cost of design first before applying the design to a product. The cost must be affordable and genuine as per the market demand for the product.
Design Thinking is solution-based –
Design thinking is a solution-focused concept and also action-oriented. It provides a practical and realistic solutions for all the problems of organizational concerns and also it helps in figuring out the prospective solutions for the same.
We will discuss an example for the same just to clarify the concept;
There were two managers in a company named Harry and Nancy. Both were not satisfied with some policies and outcomes of the company. Harry suggested introducing the centralized documentation system in the company so as to specialize and organize the work in a better way. Nancy responded that the documentation should all be confined within her department only as centralizing the whole company’s documents will make it difficult for her to have access to her section’s documents. So many discussions were going on but both Harry and Nancy were not arriving at any consensus. Frustration was also high and there was no solution for it. So, the boss whose name was Parry he ended up the meeting by saying that the decision about the problem will be taken later on.
In the above paragraph, it is seen that there is no solution seen in the discussion.
Let’s see how Design thinking can be applied to this problem –
The managers and the boss do not have to sit together for 3 hours to discuss the problem. Design-thinking will help a lot of the organizational parties to solve all the problems.
Design thinking formulates a structure for the problem by cutting up the problem into the required parts. Then some stages are formed which are meant to solve the issues gradually by following those stages.
Let’s have a look on what are the stages of Design thinking process for solving organizational problems –
Let’s see how centralized documentation could be sought out using the design thinking stages in the organizational culture.
# Define – Defining stage means thinking as per the humanitarian requirements or thinking about the problem in a human-centered way. The organization should figure out what is the actual need for the efficient working of the organization which is; centralizing the documents. But as Nancy said that tracking down all the company’s documents will be a big difficulty for the organization as the staff members will not be getting the required documents when they will need them. So, the main thing to focus here what is the main need for the undertaking.
# Empathize – This stage involves keeping in mind the people who are facing the problem. The managers must solve the problem keeping in context the people who are affected most by it.
# Ratiocinate – The term “Ratiocinate” means solving the problems by allocating the time-boxed space into the problem. Separating the brainstorming of ideas from the act of narrowing down the ideas is very necessary to solve a problem. Harry and Nancy should see the potential solutions for how they can solve the problems. Just narrow down the ideas and find the most suitable idea which will be best for the problem.
# Prototype – If the managers are not getting the right solution for the problem, the managing parties should think of the right solution to the problem. If some species are not clear, then they must clear those particulars. Don’t force a decision out of the unclear ideas. Similarly, if Harry and Nancy are not getting the prospective solution for their problem, then they must ask from others in the team what can be the desired solution for the problem. They should finalize any decision out of compulsion. Try to make up a working model by erasing the kinks and twists in it.
# Evaluate – If the managers and boss have found out the prospective solution for the problem, then it is important to test the solution. This will help in evaluating if the devised solution is suitable for the groups and teams or not.
So, this is a process of design thinking on which today’s organizational growth is dependent upon. Big business houses use this approach to solve big messy problem areas and dilemmas in their organizations. Design thinking is significantly beneficial to the organizations in the current era as it is a quick fix for the various managerial disputes.