In the three blog posts prior to this one, we explored the macro trends emerging from our collective experiences with COVID-19. It appears they might affect the way we all conduct business for the foreseeable future, if not permanently.
For any experience to truly connect with people, it must engage both halves of their brain. Now, we understand that this mythical separation of domain between the right and left hemispheres of the brain is more rooted in pop culture than science, but it is still an apt framework for this discussion. While some like to say UX and UI are two sides of the same coin, I think it’s more apt to call them two halves of the same brain. The analytical versus the aesthetic. The data versus the qualia. The objective versus the subjective. You get the idea. But what does that mean for how we might understand the individual disciplines themselves?
You’ve undoubtedly been in brainstorming sessions. Some of these sessions have likely been fruitful, others disappointing. We often get asked how ideation is different from brainstorming on “Brilliant.”— a podcast hosted by Magnani’s president. One guest distinguished the two types of sessions by asserting most brainstorms are simply “meetings… with better food.” But beyond that perhaps undeserved jab at brainstorming, there are several aspects that separate brainstorms from formal ideation.
One of the great superpowers of design thinking is that it’s a methodology that anybody, or any organization, can learn and deploy, quickly and efficiently. As proof, one only needs to look at the growing numbers of organizations and enterprises building internal design thinking capabilities and teams. We have worked with some great internal teams who are embracing the methodology and positively transforming their products, services, processes and cultures.
To those new to the concept, the term design thinking may seem like something that only designers could, or should, do. But nothing could be further from the truth. Business design thinking is the utilization of the traditional design-thinking methodology to conduct a more human-centered examination of a product, service or experience, to define what aspects of those things might be improved, to imagine and prototype solutions for addressing those improvable aspects, and to test and refine your solutions.
If we’ve learned anything from watching the progress of evolution in the natural world, it’s that everything, no matter how established, is a prototype for a more highly adapted successor. That isn’t meant to be a life-or-death warning of doom; it’s meant to say that prototyping is part of the natural order of exploring, evaluating and optimizing ideas.