Misconceptions in design thinking
There are certain misconceptions that persist in design thinking. These misconceptions are the reasons some organizations find it difficult to adapt the promising technique of design thinking for innovative creations. Even though design thinking is now becoming a growing trend in companies and organizations that prioritize innovation, certain misconceptions blur the true potential of design thinking.
Here are some misconceptions in design thinking.
Design thinking is for the creation of new products only. To think that you can only apply design thinking to “greenfield” situations is a great misapplication of the process. Design thinking can also be applied to new and existing situations.
Design thinking is for creators only. Design thinking is for everyone. When you involve an all-inclusive team in design thinking, the ideas generated are refined and reflects the dynamic composition of the team. Every department in an organization play a unique role in the development of any product. Involve them early, and all through the process.
It increases the risk of failure. On the contrary, when teams are encouraged to create a viable product, adding and changing features based on feedback, the final product is usually accurate and less likely to fail. Design thinking weeds out failure efficiently.
It requires a laboratory. Design thinking is human. You need to go out, meet, and interact with the intended user. The idea of a laboratory defeats the entire purpose of design thinking. Design thinking shouldn't be limited to a laboratory. Human based strategies are about going into the real world to correspond with customers and users, noting their needs and problems and seeking to bridge that gap. As long as the users and customers come first, design thinking process can work anywhere.
It can't be used in partnership. Again, every discipline must be involved in design thinking. Organizations need to leverage on the combined efforts, experience, capability and creativity each department brings to the table whenever they collaborate. This collaboration technique will generate ideas which will prove very useful in design thinking.
Design thinking is a linear process. The five stages in design thinking if nothing, prove that design thinking is not linear. “A” does not necessarily always lead to “B”. What you discover in a phase may lead you back to the drawing board rather than the next phase. It is better referred to as an infinite cycle.
Now that these misconceptions have been demystified, go out there and use the design thinking techniques to tackle your next challenge. In fact, all your challenge. As you continue to use this process, you become better at it.
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