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Design Thinking Techniques of The Beanstalk Creative™ Design Thinking Workshop

At The Beanstalk Creative ™ Design Thinking Workshop, participants will learn to apply the techniques of design thinking to solve complex problems at work and in life with The Beanstalk Creative ™ Design Thinking Suite of Tools.

The Beanstalk Creative ™ Design Thinking Suite of Tools contains a set of 30 “To Ask” questions that guides Design Thinking Workshop participants through their problem solving process.   These questions are separated into the three different spaces of Design Thinking in accordance to when they should be adopted during the Design Thinking process.   To guide the Design Thinking Workshop participants on the principle behind each question and its use, each Design Thinking Question is categorised in the following two ways:

  • according to one of ten characters/objects of The Jack and the Beanstalk story representing the Ten Techniques of Design Thinking ,
  • according to the Design Thinking space, in which it is meant to be used.
The Beanstalk Creative Design Thinking Techniques

The Beanstalk Creative ™ Design Thinking Suite of Tools

The Three Spaces of Design Thinking (according to Tim Brown‘s book “Change by Design“) are represented by the following three icons:

The Red Heart Design Thinking Space Inspirationto represent the Inspiration space.

The Yellow Bulb Design Thinking Space Ideatito represent the Ideation space.

The Blue Hard Hat Design Thinking Space Implementationto represent the Implementation space.

The use of the Red Heart is in line with the emphasis in the Inspiration space to feel as the customers would feel.  In the Inspiration space, design thinkers need to make use of Empathy, Observation and Insights not just to “step into the shoes” of their customers but to go into their emotions and their psyche!

The use of the Yellow Bulb to represent the Ideation space doesn’t require further explanation.

The use of the Blue Hard Hat underlines the importance of risk minimisation in the Implementation space. Tim Brown advocated protyping and trying, trying and trying again and again to allow Design Thinkers to fine-tune their solutions as much as possible before rolling out any solutions to the market.

Questions in the Inspiration Space

The questions design thinkers need to address in the Inspiration Space are:

Examining the Context and Issues of The Problem

Design Thinking Technique - The Problem Statement

The Problem Statement helps workshop participants explore the context and components of a problem. (For a more detailed introduction of The problem Statement, click on the icon on the left)

  • What are the broader contextual issues behind the problem?  How can the problem be broken down into smaller components/parts?
  • What has changed in the circumstances around the problem and its solutions that could have aggravated it?
  • Who are the end users/customers affected by the problem?  What do they do?  How do they think?  What do they need and want?

 Observation, Empathy and Insights

Design Thinking Technique - Jack

As a Design Thinking Technique, Jack serves as a major inspirational tool that connects Design Thinking Workshop participants to the problem through empathy and intuition.  (For a more detailed introduction of Jack, click on the icon on the left)

  • Putting ourselves in the shoes of our customers, what do we experience?  What do we see?  How do we feel?  How do we behave?
  • What are my fears and hopes regarding the problem and/or solution?  What do the gut feelings say?
  • What can we learn from the giants of the industry or from giants outside of the industry?

Design Thinking Technique - Mother

The Mother is a Design Thinking Tool that keeps Design Thinkers grounded and in touch with the reality while innovating.  (For a more detailed introduction of The Mother, click on the icon on the left)

  • Are we keeping tap of our customers’ attitudes towards our solutions and brand?  Do we make use of feedback, surveys, user groups and statistics where appropriate?
  • What do our “extreme customers” think?  What complaints, critiques and suggestions did they give?

Design Thinking Technique - Magic Bean

Like the name suggests, The Magic Bean is the Design Thinking Technique to help generate the crazy idea that has the magical potential to solve the problem in the most unbelievable and perfect way.  (For a more detailed introduction of The Magic Bean, click on the icon on the left)

  • What would the perfect customer/ end user experience be like?

 

Questions in the Ideation Space

The questions design thinkers need to address in the Ideation Space are:

Thinking of Crazy Solutions and making them Practical!

Design Thinking Technique - Magic Bean

Like the name suggests, The Magic Bean is the Design Thinking Technique to help generate the crazy idea that has the magical potential to solve the problem in the most unbelievable and perfect way.  (For a more detailed introduction of The Magic Bean, click on the icon on the left)

  • What are the wildest, most improbable, most magical, craziest ideas I can think of that will solve the problem?
  • If you were to substitute the magic bean (like the one in the Jack and the Beanstalk fairy tale) with another object, what would it be?  How does this object solve the problem?

Design Thinking Technique - The Gold Coins

This Design Thinking Technique, The Gold Coins, is the technique to extract or abstract useful solutions from a crazy idea.  (For a more detailed introduction of The Gold Coins, click on the icon on the left)

  • What are the principles/philosophies that can be extracted or abstracted from an idea, especially a “crazy” one?  Can useful solutions be drawn from them?
  • How can we transform the crazy idea into a solution, keeping it crazy enough and yet making it totally practical and workable?

Challenging Assumptions and the Status Quo!

Design Thinking Technique - The Sacred Cow

The Sacred Cow is a Design Thinking Technique that challenges assumptions and the status quo in order to generate ideas.  (For a more detailed introduction of The Sacred Cow, click on the icon on the left)

  • What are the assumptions behind the problem?  Are they still valid?  Can we imagine reversing some of these assumptions?
  • What are the things which we believed we cannot do without?  How can we imagine a solution that does away with these essentials?
  • What are the SOPs (standard operating procedures), standard solutions and/or components of a standard solution and how can we improve them?

 

Questions in the Implementation Space

The questions design thinkers need to address in the Implementation Space are:

Adopting existing Methods/ Procedures/ Technologies

Design Thinking Technique - The Gold Coins

This Design Thinking Technique, The Gold Coins, is the technique to extract or abstract useful solutions from a crazy idea.  (For a more detailed introduction of The Gold Coins, click on the icon on the left)

  • Are there existing methods/ procedures/ technologies which we can explore to better achieve and accomplish the solution to the problem?

Overcoming Obstacles and Test, Test, Test!

Design Thinking Technique - The Giant

The Giant Design Thinking Technique anticipates problems, difficulties and studies obstacles and limitations to help Design Thinking Workshop participants overcome these through the use of prototypes and trials to fine-tune their solutions.  (For a more detailed introduction to The Giant, click on the icon on the left)

  • What are the constraints, limitations, obstacles and difficulties behind the problem?  How can these be overcome?
  • How can we make use of prototypes and/or pilots to test our solution?
  • How can we limit the risks of the solution?  For example, can we ring-fence the funds to be allocated?

Simplify and lower the Costs!

Design Thinking Technique - The Axe

The Axe is the Design Thinking Technique that represents the principle of economy.  It helps Design Thinking Workshop participants think about simplifying and lowering the costs of their solutions.  (For a more detailed introduction to The Axe, click on the icon on the left)

  • Is there a way to simplify the solution or are there simpler ways to do particular tasks within the solution?
  • Are there steps in the solutions that I can eliminate?
  • How can the costs of the solution be lowered?  Can the solution be further value-engineered?

Automate

Design Thinking Technique - The Golden Egg Laying Hen

The Golden Egg-laying Hen is the Design Thinking Technique that helps Design Thinking Workshop participants strive to make their solution/s as self-executing as possible through streamlining processes and automation.  (For a more detailed introduction to The Golden Egg-laying Hen click on the icon on the left)

  • Are decisions or approvals necessary during the implementation of the solutions?  If so, can these be streamlined or pre-programmed?
  • Can any step in the solution which requires a human intervention be replaced with one that does not require it?
  • Are there any part/s in the solution that can be automated, for example, through the use of IT or ICT?

Convincing Stakeholders and Decision-makers

Design Thinking Technique - Mother

The Mother is a Design Thinking Tool that keeps Design Thinkers grounded and in touch with the reality while innovating.  (For a more detailed introduction of The Mother, click on the icon on the left)

  • How would we convince the stakeholders including the implementors and decision makers?  How shall we communicate to internal as well as external customers?

 

Planning the Design Thinking Journey

Design Thinking Technique - The Beanstalk

Design Thinking is an arduous process that requires thorough planning.  The Beanstalk Design Thinking Technique helps the planning of this process with these three questions:

  • Who and how are the end users affected and how can I involve them in the problem solving?
  • Who (team members, suppliers, contractors, stakeholders) should participate in the solution finding process and at what capacity?
  • Which tools are appropriate for my problem?  How should I sequence the usage of the different tools on the Design Thinking Road Map?

The Beanstalk Creative™ Design Thinking Roadmap

The Beanstalk Creative Design Thinking Roadmap

To most efficiently and effectively address all the questions of Design Thinking, we encourage the Design Thinking Workshop participants to adopt the Card-facilitated Group Thinking Method.

With the help of The Beanstalk Creative™ Design Thinking Techniques, The Beanstalk Creative™ Design Thinking Roadmap, the Card-facilitated Group Thinking Method, the planning as well as execution of problem solving through Design Thinking becomes not only effective and efficient but fun!  Come join our The Beanstalk Creative™ Design Thinking Workshop to learn these essential Techniques of Design Thinking!