The Design Thinking Process

Today’s workshop was an unusual one — of course, it involved design! How should startups face the design challenge? How can the startups better identify and better engage with their customers? We had Ketna Hirji from The Innovation Tool Box to mentor our startups on how to go about the design process. Rather than just being lectured upon, the startups brainstormed on ideas and finally made a visual prototype and showcased them via elevator pitches.

Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.

— Steve Jobs

Startups should question a customer to understand what he or she feels. Keep asking why, why, why to properly understand the customer and build an empathy map of the customer as to how he or she was feeling while answering the questions and arrive at a final statement like “Kate is a big coffee drinker who needs to make her own coffee quickly and wants the experience to be fun and seamless because she values her time.”

Next, brainstorm on the idea, keeping the following points in mind and follow the method in this video.

  1. Big
  2. Visual
  3. Quantity
  4. No judgements
  5. Go wild

Vote on the ideas and build a visual prototype which gets the most votes!

  1. Be mindful of the process
  2. Focus on human values
  3. Change your perspective
  4. Collaborate across boundaries
  5. Create clarity from complexity
  6. Show, don’t tell!

Cross posted on the GSF blog. The GSF Accelerator is a 7-week program designed to foster innovation in India’s fast-growing digital economy. It aims to provide select, promising start-ups with unparalleled access to venture and business networks, personalized and intensive mentoring, and initial capital. Coaching is provided to each of the GSF startups by a mentor pool of over 200 cofounders and digital entrepreneurs from across the world. This article is a part of the series of the mentorship sessions held for the startups in the winter 2012 iteration of the accelerator.

1 comment

  1. Hi Gautam Focusing on the core customer values have always been my goal, to give what they want. Each design should cater to the customer, the mission indeed. Awesome post.

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