Thanks to a rapid proliferation of technology and immediate online access to almost any type of product or service, consumers have become accustomed to getting what they want. That’s a good thing, of course, but it is also a challenge for companies that actually build those products. What behavior is driving the end-user to choose one product versus another? And what keeps them attached to a certain brand and coming back for every new iteration? 

Design Thinking Puts the Customer Mindset First

The most successful product companies today are embracing what’s known as design thinking to ensure customer preferences are at the heart of their product design strategies. Design thinking methodology follows a human-centered design framework to develop products and services that are user-friendly, business viable, and technologically feasible. As a design approach, it can be invaluable to creating a real connection with customers, and from a business standpoint, it is at the center of a truly disruptive business model.

What Makes Design Thinking Work 

The design thinking methodology is an iterative process that attempts to understand user behavior, challenge assumptions, and redefine problems to create solutions that may not be immediately apparent. It helps designers question basic assumptions and reframe a problem in a more human-centric way. 

As outlined in an overview by the Institute of Design at Stanford, which is a key contributor for Simplilearn’s Design Thinking Leader Master’s Course, there are five key modes in the design thinking framework:

1. Empathize:

At the heart of the human-centered design process is empathy. It is the work a designer does to learn people’s physical and emotional needs and to understand those needs in the context of a design challenge. They do it by observing behavior, engaging and interviewing users, and listening intently to their responses. 

2. Define:

The goal of the define mode is to create a definitive and meaningful problem statement that helps bring clarity and focus to the design discussion. It defines the challenge so the solution can be more easily attainable.  

3. Ideate:

Ideation concentrates on generating ideas, brainstorming concepts, and coming up with desired outcomes. The key is to push the envelope and create the widest range of possible ideas to then test and find the ideal solution. 

4. Prototype:

Prototyping is the iterative process of generating artifacts that can answer the questions designers have posed and get them closer to a solution. Prototypes in the early stage are usually low-res creations that are easy and cheap to produce. 

5. Test:

The final phase is to test and solicit feedback about the prototypes so the next iterations will be more refined. Testing is an opportunity to build further empathy and decide if you’re going in the right direction. 

Introducing Simplilearn’s Design Thinking Leader Master’s Course

Simplilearn’s newest design thinking master’s program provides an ideal opportunity to pursue design thinking as a tool for product and service innovation. You’ll learn to exploit the human-centered design framework to develop products and services that are desirable, viable, and feasible – and that generate a positive impact at work. 

Whether you’re developing innovative products or services, or reengineering business models that need improvement, the curriculum shows you how to follow the design thinking framework to bring to life what’s most desirable to your customers. You will learn how to create disruption in your market and build an organizational structure that fosters innovation at scale. 

Remember too that true design thinking relies on the practical execution of its principles, including UI UX design course. That’s why the master’s course puts a heavy focus on applying skills in a real-world environment with a capstone project. The capstone provides an opportunity to develop an innovation solution with guidance from industry mentors and support from learner success managers. 

And to offer an even greater real-world set of exercises, the master’s program features several Harvard Business Publishing case studies that illustrate design thinking in action. The cases include a look at innovation at Apple, IDEO, and Asia Miles that will drill down on how design thinking influences innovation, culture, change management, and employee experiences. 

Design thinking is one of the hottest and most influential skills in the technology industry. A Forrester Study recently projected a median per-project ROI of 229 percent for design thinking projects, with three-quarters of them doubling their investment or more. A mature design thinking practice, it explains, can achieve an ROI between 71 and 107 percent, based on a consistent series of inputs and outputs. According to ZipRecruiter, the national US average for design thinking salaries is $96,193, and can run as high as $221,000. 

Learn What Design Thinking Is All About

Whether you’re a UX designer, product developer, or executive in charge of building great technology projects, you’ll want to learn how this Design Thinking Leader Master’s Course can revolutionize your strategy, process, and mindset. The business environment is ideal for design thinking principles, and this is a great opportunity to see how it can impact your career and your design team activities.