Design Thinking When It’s At Home
We ♡ Design Thinking.
It’s no secret.
The benefits of employing Design Thinking in your organisation or team are myriad, and have been discussed forwards, backwards and sideways by many others.
But not many have written about the impact of Design Thinking on your personal life. Ask the friends and spouses of the We Are Unstuck team — if you really, really believe in the power of Design Thinking, you can’t just leave it at the door.
In the last seven years there hasn’t been a holiday planned or taken in Sarah’s household without the use of a flipchart, post-it notes or Sharpies. Sarah’s influence has stretched so far that her husband and daughter now get the required materials out on the living room floor without a nudge, hint or suggestion. Curious about creativity, education and coding Sarah’s also working on a project with her daughter, now in the paper prototyping stage of development for an app to encourage families to go running together. So far the user research suggests they should target it to 7+ year olds (and if it’s raining and there are puddles to splash in then all the better!).
Amy covers our communications and marketing, with some research added in when the time calls for it. She’s spent her first year away from university prototyping different ways of working on different tasks, employing various new technologies and environments in the aim to improve efficiency and creativity. Amy has also implemented an iterative approach to the design of her new apartment, studying her own (and her boyfriend’s) behaviour to shape and create better habits — even if that is just moving the washing basket a few metres to the left. It’s geeky, but it works.
Lisa is our prototyping guru, with a killer bias for doing. She’ll be the one to cut short a lengthy discussion with the simple phrase ‘why don’t we mock it up and see?’, steering us towards a much more productive chat. Lisa has created huge cardboard prototypes in her house, to decide on whether a walk-in cupboard would look good in her kitchen (it didn’t). Lisa’s used Design Thinking to organise a hen do, interviewing the bride to figure out her needs before presenting back a series of ideas to evaluate and take forward. It might sound overly meticulous — but it did lead to a trip to Barcelona, rather than Centre Parcs (on the same budget!).
Try some prototyping, idea generation, or insight gathering next time you’re taking a trip, or gardening, or cooking. You don’t have to go quite this far with Design Thinking in your own home (…if you value your relationships). But it works, and it’s also a great way to test your techniques before taking them into the office.
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