Professional Skills

Three Tips to Get You Started in Design Thinking

When new endeavors do not yield immediate results, you might be inclined to think you have simply failed and give up on it. But great things take time to build, especially big things like a design thinking mindset. In a post at his blog, Michael D. Roush provides three tips for getting started with design thinking and seeing it through:

  1. Practice empathy.
  2. Be prepared to fail and to learn from it.
  3. Bias toward action.

A Fresh Look

Since design thinking has everything to do with experiencing the business from the user’s inside-out perspective, empathy is crucial. Conduct many interviews in order to understand where users are really coming from. You might confirm that you know the “what” involved in improving a user’s experience, but discover that your impression of the “why” behind it was all wrong. In this way, practicing empathy ensures that the solution you deliver is the right one.

Roush notes that people embrace failure much more readily these days, because of the learning opportunities it provides. Granted, no one should ever seek to fail, and they should always implement as many strategies as possible to avoid it. But when it happens, eh, it happens. Thus, embrace iterative development and make a lot of prototypes. You will inevitably uncover a few valuable nuggets from the clutter you create.

Lastly, about bias toward action, Roush offers this:

I have a strong memory of coming out of one especially long meeting at a previous workplace. The meeting wasn’t necessarily a productive one.  We left with no proposed solutions. A co-worker of mine put it best when he said, “Well, we didn’t come up with a solution, but we sure admired the problem!” Too often, we spend a lot of time admiring problems, and not taking steps to resolve it…

Taking action without any good reasoning behind it is of course a problem in itself. But when a problem presents itself, somebody ought to try something to fix it. Never let too much admiration get in the way of action.

You can view the original article here:

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