Solve Any Problem with Design Thinking

6 Mins

If you were in charge of the MRI project, how would you have approached the problem?

Doug Dietz, the lead designer on the project, went to see the scanner in action.

Design thinking is a cutting-edge methodology that helps you solve problems and uncover new opportunities.

Developed at Stanford University in the 1980s, design thinking is used by companies like Apple, GE, Capital One, and IBM to innovate.

But design thinking is not limited to graphic design, and you don't have to be a designer to do it.

Design thinkers first use divergent thinking to come up with many ideas. From there, they use convergent thinking to find the best solutions.

Divergent thinking (n):

Exploring many possible ideas or solutions.

Convergent thinking (n):

Narrowing down possibilities to only the best answers.

Design thinking follows a specific structure:

1. Observe and research to understand the real problem or opportunity

2. Come up with many ideas for solutions

3. Prototype quickly to home in on your solution

4. Implement your solution in the real world

Design thinking follows a structure:

1. Observe and research to understand the real problem or opportunity

2. Come up with many ideas for solutions

3. Prototype quickly to home in on your solution

4. Implement your solution in the real world

Quiz 1 of 1

You want to use design thinking to change and reinvigorate the way you run team meetings. Which of the following would reflect a design thinking approach?

a
Research how other managers run meetings, then have team members take turns running your meetings to see which of them does it best. From there, choose one person to run meetings going forward.
b
Research how other managers run meetings, identify what’s lacking in yours, then propose different meeting styles that could address your issues. Try out new approaches to see what works and what doesn't
c
Brainstorm as many new meeting styles as possible, then summarize each approach in a follow-up email to the team. Have them vote on their two favorites, then ask your manager which of the two is the best choice.
d
Identify what’s lacking in your meetings, then propose many different meeting styles that could address your issues. Pick your favorite suggestion and try it out in your next five team meetings.

No matter what field you're in, by using the design thinking process, you and your team can quickly and creatively solve problems and uncover new opportunities.

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