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Challenges in the process of Design Thinking

Design Thinking

Introduction

With the complex and changing business environment, organizations are adopting new approaches to create a strong foothold in the market. The success of the organization highly depends upon the organization’s ability to build a deep and collaborating relationship with the customers. Hence, to fulfill the higher expectation and changing demand of the customers, implementing innovation is one of the key factors that the organization is focusing

Challenges in the process of Design Thinking

With the aim of fulfilling customers’ satisfaction, the Design Thinking process helps in developing the innovative product. However, at the same time, some of the following challenges seen are:

  • LeadershipIn every organization, the implementation of Design Thinking process starts with the involvement of skilled and knowledgeable people who works with innovative ideas to improve the efficiency of the products or services. In the opinion of Kurucz et al.,(2017), it is the duty of that person to understand how a new product will resonate on emotionally and economically for the consumers and at the same time will make significant differences to the business. The managerial employees are liable for hiring workers with the latest skills and knowledge to run the business successfully. They are vested with the duty of designing a detailed structure of working operations and giving proper training to the employees (Bolman & Deal, 2017). This brings out the creativity of the workforce. However, it is seen that with people reaching a level of seniority, they no longer harness their talents or passion in the Design Thinking process.

In the development of UNI concept, we have not faced the issue of leadership throughout the Design Thinking process.  The senior members working on the project were highly skilled and had proper knowledge of the hearing aid device mechanism. The higher officials had structured the design process by accurately analyzing the issues faced by the deaf people and worked on designing an advanced hearing device.

  • ScaleIn the words of Benner & Tushman, (2015), scaling is a characteristic of a system, model or function that describes its capability to cope and perform well under the increasing and expanding workload. The scaling hugely influences the business to a new level and helps in becoming the leader in the market. The scaling focuses on the four areas to get the scaling right. That is people, strategy, execution, and cash. The company should hire best professionals, communicating openly with them, motivating them and rewarding them for their performances if important for business. The strategy of the business should include the weaknesses, opportunities and threats of the market, its core values and mission (Norman & Verganti, 2014). The management team should spend time on interacting with customers, conducting market research and networking with professionals who offer outside perspective. The cash flow of the company should strength, be sustainable to keep the company floating during the time of emergency.

During working on the concept of UNI, we have aim at maintaining the factors of scaling. We have kept the designing strategy by studying the need for an advanced hearing aid device by interacting with the deaf and hearing hard people. We have a team of highly qualified professionals who have incurred the latest technologies with developing the device and the machine is low cost so that people from the different level of society can avail the product. Thus, we can say that we have not faced any problem regarding scaling.

  • Gathering of Data – Gathering of data also proves to be a challenge in the process of Design Thinking. The whole process is based on consistent testing and generating data and feedback for the better improvement in the next cycle (Liedtka, 2015). The process of gathering data requires feasible customers to test the product and give their views and feedback on the modification of the product so as to meet their needs. The data receives cannot always be trusted as the feedback received from the customers may be biased and may not have possibilities to put them in actual terms (Carlgren et al., 2016). The potential customers may also report issues which are not valid so as to be entertained by the organization and ultimately make the process comparatively complex.

In the process design thinking of the UNI, gathering data proved to be a tough and expensive part for us. We required a number of feasible and potential customers and received mixed views for the product which ultimately did not benefit us. Then we hired potential customers so as to achieve trustable views for the product and to implement in the process.

  • People Desirability – A major challenge that a large number of organization face in the process of adopting the process of Design Thinking is the desirability of the people in the product that whether there is a requirement for such a product in the market and if there is such a requirement, whether there are similar products available in the market (Drew, 2018). An innovative product may also fail in the market if it is not desirable in the market while an available product with a few modifications can win the market if it meets the requirements of the people (Glen et al., 2015). For an organization, understanding the desirability of a product, it requires to know whether the product solves the issues of the customers or not. If the product satisfies the requirements of the customer, it is desirable and has higher chances of success while if it does not satisfies the requirements of the customers, it will fail in the market.

This challenge did not prove to be a barrier for UNI, as we knew that UNI was a single product of its kind and there were no competitors for it in the market. The product was highly desirable in the market as it would eliminate the gap of communication between a person who is hard of hearing and a normal person.

  • Business Viability – An important challenge in the process of Design Thinking is the reaching to a decision whether the project is viable and attempt should be taken to go forward with the project (Baldassarre et al., 2017). The main feature of Design Thinking is that it focuses on ultimate needs of the customers that the customers expect from the product. Even if the requirements of the feasible customers are met by the product, the next factor to be considered is the price of the product. The viability of the product in the success of the business largely depends on the balance between meeting the requirements of the customers and maintaining the cost effectiveness in the process (Kurucz et al., 2017). The concept of Business Viability is concerned with making it sure that whether the business idea fits to the goals of the organization and can be accomplished in terms of the requirements of the customers and the price of the products.

In the process of developing the UNI gadget, we were aware of the business viability factor and it was one of our main aims to produce the gadget in such a way that it meets the requirements of the customers and is also cost effective to them. We wanted to create a device that proves to be an effective communication channel between a deaf and a normal human being. We knew that the process needed camera, sensors, recorders and a set of software which was collectively an expensive process and eliminating the costs was a big challenge that we faced.

Conclusion

The design thinking with its ten steps proves to be complex process as there are numerous challenges that the process inculcates. The challenges make the design thinking process tough for an organization to implement in its products. Coping up the challenges in the process of Design Thinking proves to be highly beneficial for an organization in terms of achieving success in the product. The main reason for design thinking to be a success is because of the reason that it focuses on the requirements of the end users. Through its process of continuous testing, it reaches a level in the production that has fullest chances of success in the market through the designing of the products meeting the requirements of the customers and ultimately achieves success through the implementation of the concept of design thinking.

References

Baldassarre, B., Calabretta, G., Bocken, N. M. P., & Jaskiewicz, T. (2017). Bridging sustainable business model innovation and user-driven innovation: A process for sustainable value proposition design. Journal of Cleaner Production147, 175-186.

Benner, M. J., & Tushman, M. L. (2015). Reflections on the 2013 Decade Award—“Exploitation, exploration, and process management: The productivity dilemma revisited” ten years later. Academy of management review40(4), 497-514.

Bolman, L. G., & Deal, T. E. (2017). Reframing organizations: Artistry, choice, and leadership. John Wiley & Sons.

Carlgren, L., Rauth, I., & Elmquist, M. (2016). Framing design thinking: The concept in idea and enactment. Creativity and Innovation Management25(1), 38-57.

Drew, C. (2018). Design for data ethics: using service design approaches to operationalize ethical principles on four projects. Phil. Trans. R. Soc. A376(2128), 20170353.

Glen, R., Suciu, C., Baughn, C. C., & Anson, R. (2015). Teaching design thinking in business schools. The International Journal of Management Education13(2), 182-192.

Kurucz, E. C., Colbert, B. A., Luedeke-Freund, F., Upward, A., & Willard, B. (2017). Relational leadership for strategic sustainability: practices and capabilities to advance the design and assessment of sustainable business models. Journal of cleaner production140, 189-204.

Kurucz, E. C., Colbert, B. A., Luedeke-Freund, F., Upward, A., & Willard, B. (2017). Relational leadership for strategic sustainability: practices and capabilities to advance the design and assessment of sustainable business models. Journal of cleaner production140, 189-204.

Liedtka, J. (2015). Perspective: Linking design thinking with innovation outcomes through cognitive bias reduction. Journal of Product Innovation Management32(6), 925-938.

Norman, D. A., & Verganti, R. (2014). Incremental and radical innovation: Design research vs. technology and meaning change. Design issues30(1), 78-96.

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