Design Thinking, por Tim Brown

Tim Brown, CEO da IDEO, fala-nos um pouco do que é Design Thinking, e de como este influencia a vida e a forma de estar de um empreendedor. Aqui ficam dois momentos do seu contributo para a Harvard Business Review:

A Design Thinker’s Personality Profile

Contrary to popular opinion, you don’t need weird shoes or a black turtleneck to be a design thinker. Nor are design thinkers necessarily created only by design schools, even though most professionals have had some kind of design training. My experience is that many people outside professional design have a natural aptitude for design thinking, which the right development and experiences can unlock. Here, as a starting point, are some of the characteristics to look for in design thinkers:

They can imagine the world from multiple perspectives—those of colleagues, clients, end users, and customers (current and prospective). By taking a “people first” approach, design thinkers can imagine solutions that are inherently desirable and meet explicit or latent needs. Great design thinkers observe the world in minute detail. They notice things that others do not and use their insights to inspire innovation.

Integrative thinking.
They not only rely on analytical processes (those that produce either/ or choices) but also exhibit the ability to see all of the salient—and sometimes contradictory— aspects of a confounding problem and create novel solutions that go beyond and dramatically improve on existing alternatives. (See Roger Martin’s The Opposable Mind: How Successful Leaders Win Through Integrative Thinking.)

They assume that no matter how challenging the constraints of a given problem, at least one potential solution is better than the existing alternatives.

Significant innovations don’t come from incremental tweaks. Design thinkers pose questions and explore constraints in creative ways that proceed in entirely new directions.

The increasing complexity of products, services, and experiences has replaced the myth of the lone creative genius with the reality of the enthusiastic interdisciplinary collaborator. The best design thinkers don’t simply work alongside other disciplines; many of them have significant experience in more than one. At IDEO we employ people who are engineers and marketers, anthropologists and industrial designers, architects and psychologists.

How to Make Design Thinking Part of the Innovation Drill

Begin at the beginning.
Involve design thinkers at the very start of the innovation process, before any direction has been set. Design thinking will help you explore more ideas more quickly than you could otherwise.

Take a human-centered approach.
Along with business and technology considerations, innovation should factor in human behavior, needs, and preferences. Human-centered design thinking—especially when it includes research based on direct observation will capture unexpected insights and produce innovation that more precisely reflects what consumers want.

Try early and often.
Create an expectation of rapid experimentation and prototyping. Encourage teams to create a prototype in the first week of a project. Measure progress with a metric such as average time to first prototype or number of consumers exposed to prototypes during the life of a program.

Seek outside help.
Expand the innovation ecosystem by looking for opportunities to cocreate with customers and consumers. Exploit Web 2.0 networks to enlarge the effective scale of your innovation team.

Blend big and small projects.
Manage a portfolio of innovation that stretches from shorter-term incremental ideas to longer-term revolutionary ones. Expect business units to drive and fund incremental innovation, but be willing to initiate revolutionary innovation from the top.

Budget to the pace of innovation.
Design thinking happens quickly, yet the route to market can be unpredictable. Don’t constrain the pace at which you can innovate by relying on cumbersome budgeting cycles. Be prepared to rethink your funding approach as projects proceed and teams learn more about opportunities.

Find talent any way you can.
Look to hire from interdisciplinary programs like the new Institute of Design at Stanford and progressive business schools like Rotman, in Toronto. People with more-conventional design backgrounds can push solutions far beyond your expectations. You may even be able to train nondesigners with the right attributes to excel in design-thinking roles.

Design for the cycle.
In many businesses people move every 12 to 18 months. But design projects may take longer than that to get from day one through implementation. Plan assignments so that design thinkers go from inspiration to ideation to implementation. Experiencing the full cycle builds better judgment and creates great long-term benefits for the organization.