An overview of the Design Thinking process

Design Thinking is an iterative process in which we seek to understand the user, associated challenges and redefine problems in an attempt to identify alternative strategies and solutions that might not be instantly apparent with our initial level of understanding. At the same time, Design Thinking provides a solution-based approach to solving problems. It is a way of thinking and working as well as a collection of hands-on methods.

5 Stages of Design Thinking

Empathize: This the first step in design thinking because it is a skill that allows us to understand and share the same feelings that others feel. Through empathy, we are able to put ourselves in other people’s shoes and connect with how they might be feeling about their problem, circumstance, or situation

Define: This is the problem definition stage of the design thinking processDuring the Define stage, you put together the information you have created and gathered during the Empathise stage. This is where you will analyse your observations and synthesise them in order to define the core problems that you and your team have identified up to this point

Ideate: in the Ideation phase of the design process is the phase in which you concentrate on idea generation. Mentally it represents a process of “going wide” in terms of concepts and outcomes. The Ideation stage often follows the first two stages.

Prototype: This phase involves producing an early, inexpensive, and scaled down version of the product in order to reveal any problems with the current design. It offers designers the opportunity to bring their ideas to life, Prototypes are often used in the final, testing phase in a Design Thinking process in order to determine how user

Test: Testing is the fifth and final step in the design thinking process. Testing is often undertaken concurrently with Prototyping, and performed well, it can provide many learning opportunities to help you learn more about the user, and opportunities to refine your prototype and even the problem statement.

Why Design Thinking

Design Thinking is extremely useful in tackling problems that are ill-defined or unknown, by re-framing the problem in human-centric ways, creating many ideas in brainstorming sessions, and adopting a hands-on approach in prototyping and testing.

Design thinking incorporates constituent or consumer insights in depth and rapid prototyping, all aimed at getting beyond the assumptions that block effective solutions. Design thinking — inherently optimistic, constructive, and experiential — addresses the needs of the people who will consume a product or service and the infrastructure that enables it.

Who should care about Design

Design is for everyone. The best products emerge from highly collaborative teams, on which designers are shepherds of design rather than gatekeepers. Design is innovation you can hold. It solves problems that we see every day. And it anticipates how we’ll live tomorrow.