Design thinking opens up new avenues for innovation that your company had not t

hought of before. Instead of overthinking, over-analyzing and focusing on minimizing risks, design thinking allows you to stop deliberating and start acting. On the other hand, design thinking can sometimes lead to under-thinking. Just because something is possible, does not make it a good idea.

A good product strategy is based on a clear understanding of what your company stands for: who you are and what you do. Any ideas which are implemented have to fit into the wider strategy. This is why design thinking does not replace product strategy, but should instead work within its framework.

The first stage of design thinking requires brainstorming without judgment. This is an excellent way to inspire innovative ideas, but after this initial stage, decision makers have to narrow down the ideas to actionable ones which fit into the greater product and company strategy. When creating new business models, it is critical to consider alternatives, trade-offs and opportunity costs.

There is no plug-and-play strategy for integrating design thinking into your company processes. Instead, each company needs to figure out how its internal processes can support design thinking. Before embarking on a design thinking initiative, decision makers should be able to answer these questions:

  • What resources will be available so innovative ideas have a chance at succeeding?
  • What metrics will be used to determine whether a project has been a success?
  • How will ideas produced by the design thinking process be analyzed?

Design thinking is not a magic pill which will make all your company’s problems go away. It cannot replace product strategy and overall brand strategy, but it can be a tremendous help in unlocking the creativity of your staff and bringing innovative ideas to the consumer.

What kind of changes have you made to your organization to better position the design thinking as part of your product strategy? Triode can offer design thinking training and help you to include it to your current product strategy!

Patrick Sirois

At Triode, we specialize in developing new products and services for complex industries like medical devices and transportation. We work with you closely to help define product strategy, with an emphasis on reducing the risks associated with innovating in these sophisticated and often regulated consumer-oriented environments.