I recently attended a 6-day course Designing for Social Systems at the Hasso Plattner d_school at Stanford University. We sent at team from our Wellness initiative at the University of Colorado Department of Medicine, cutely named “WellDOM” (more on this in a future post). It was … a mind blower.
What is design thinking and why is it so cool?
- It is a system of thinking that both expands and focuses creative thought.
- It encourages curiosity and diving into the ethnography of individuals
- It also encourages thinking about positive and negative influences at many levels of social systems
- It actively encourages play, physical manipulation of prototypes and sticky notes to build a joint vision
- It uses storytelling, rapid cycle development, ‘what if’ and ‘how might we’ statements to spark ideas.
- It is FUN.
I’ve been thinking and digesting what I learned over the past few months and came up with the graphic above. I’m a visual thinker, and although it is quite cluttered, I think it finally encapsulates the scope of what I now appreciate to be Design Thinking for Social Systems:
- It is Human-Centered (focused on emotion, story, experience), the inner yellow circle
- It is Systems-Aware (complex social systems impact your success), the outer blue circle
- It is Strategy-Focused (keep your end-goals in mind)
- The inner and outer circles interact, and the strategy lane underlies the whole group of activities.
- There are perhaps 4 dozen specific activities that allow you dive deeply into every part of this diagram, in your pursuit of a creative, lateral-thinking solution to complex, ambiguous problems.
Don’t wait! Take one of these courses! And start applying it today!
CMIO’s take? Creativity, and NOT Computing Horsepower, is the next frontier.