I think it’s a matter of framing: too often the activity is presumed to be about making a thing.
Alastair Somerville

The majority of my “formal” design thinking experience has been with Jason Goodwin (https://medium.com/@justmyhead). My impression is it is a technique to unlock communication by enabling everyone to find their creative voice. The closure phase is where the “Ahah!” moment reveals whether or not a thing is the result. Sometimes framing the process as a search for a thing is the way to have people open up. I hope some day you can experience Jason. He’s masterful! :) #IMHO