When you are tasked with the responsibility of coming up with a design for a particular product aimed at a target audience, you need to keep the basics of design thinking in mind. Design thinking was all around us for decades, yet, IDEO, a consultancy headed by none other than Tim Brown, have taken it to the extent of defining it as analytical solutions to traditional problems which arise in the world of design.
Digital recruitment is on the rise, and only the best designers get professional jobs have fat salary packages. They champion design thinking and say that it translates observations into insights, which are channeled to create products as well as services aimed at helping customers. Designing means that the designer has to search for an innovative idea, and then translate it into something of value to customers; which is not an easy job.
Creative jobs that follow a traditional form of problem have a mathematical and cold hearted approach to the task at hand. The problem or campaign is identified, steps and tools required are pre-defined and all the designers can do is hope for the desired results when the product hits the market. This plan works, but not in all cases, and certainly not in today’s age where there is cut-throat competition to grab the attention of consumers.Design thinking starts off with observing the situation first. There needs to be a deep understanding of the culture and belief system as well as what the context of the problem really is.
One needs to empathise and values as well as beliefs of the people concerned with the product in question, and also get to know of the root cause of their dissatisfaction. This enables a designer to avoid similar pitfalls in future. Empathising also will involve deep observation of the audience, including engagement with them in order to hear their views.
The next step is definition of the problem and also compiling it into connections, patterns as well as insights. You have to compile all gathered info and reach a point where you can define what kind of a challenge awaits your team. In designing terms, this is also known as POV or Point of View. A POVP will lead to emergence of the solution.The next step is ideating the probable solutions, and is only limited by your imagination. You do not require judging a solution, just try and think of as many as you can, good or bad. The collaborative nature of Ideation makes for the ideal sifter of bad ideas that will not work.
After that is done, the team should try to come up with more than one solution. This prototype process helps in clarifying the actual problem. Post this, testing is done to see which design product works best with the audience, but be warned that the cycle may be repetitive if the solution is not good enough.