4 simple ways to begin leveraging design thinking

After last week's conversation with Lisa Bralts and Kendra Wieneke (members of the Siebel Center for Design team), they put together four simple tips to help marcom professionals on campus dip our toes into design thinking. Here's to better creativity, problem solving, and deliverables!

1. Start at the end (user). At the outset of a project, consider taking time to develop interview questions and talk more in-depth to a small, diverse set of end users in addition to any market (or other) research you may be doing. Notice themes and other bits of information that rise to the top (this is the part where the SCD team uses a LOT of Post-it notes). 

2. Reframe your internal dialogue. Ask questions that start with “How might we…?” rather than “How can we…?” or “How should we…?”. Just changing up your language can result in more expansive thinking. 

3. Consider the “moments that matter”. Put yourself in your users' walking shoes. What stands out as important or meaningful along the way? What matters? So much inspiration can come from just thinking about the users' journeys. 

4. Brainstorm fearlessly. Too often we hold back in brainstorming sessions out of fear – fear of rejection, of coming up empty in the "ideas" department, or of looking or sounding “silly”. We might also find ourselves avoiding brainstorming due to a perceived lack of time. Don’t give in! Fearless brainstorming in a safe environment, especially after it becomes a practice, can produce extraordinary results – and more cohesive teams.

Thanks for these pointers, Lisa and Kendra!