IDEO have visualized the design thinking process in 5 steps:
And also stresses the fact that the process is very iterative, you have to test, change and try again in order to reach the perfect solution.
I think it is very interesting to note that it all starts out with empathy. Often described as a skill to develop in order to fully understand your current challenge by empathizing with the user group, I would also like to see it as a prerequisite for the iterative process in itself, but then through having empathy for the others in the team.
An iterative process means that your idea might change; the form might alter as you, through iteration, develop or refine your idea. That might mean that the idea you earlier on in the process proudly presented, may look entirely different at the end. And here enters the potential problem of the ego.
Everyone has an ego, some have bigger than others, and some days and times it is more sensitive than usual. The ego favours prestige, hence the ego will always champion its own ideas, and that in itself is not strange, of course we like our own ideas, they are babies from our minds and everyone loves their own children. But it might be a problem when the ego are making you blind for the fact that there might be another solution in your group that is better suited than yours, or that the clash of several ideas might be the smartest way to proceed. It is in such a moment we much learn to practice empathy towards our teammates, to see our own idea from their perspective, in order to silence our ego by understanding another point of view. It is when we can do this that we become truly great collaborators.