• Design Thinking
  • The 3 elements to innovate with Design Thinking
  • Remi Edart | July 2016
  • Blog-DT-1-TopPicture
  • Innovation depends on 3 elements complementary and influencing each other


    • • A collaborative team
    • An innovation process: design thinking and/or business thinking (lean startup, business model canvas, effectuation)
    • • A modular space

    The collaborative team

    “The emotional ambiance of a design team correlates with success and failure – 70% accuracy” (center for Design Research at Stanford)

    It is the most critical element for the success of any innovation project. It only takes a few hours to an experienced coach to assess a team and its potential success

    The characteristics of a team are

    • • Its collaborative work. The individual strengthens the team effectiveness while / by keeping his/her individuality
    • • Its multidisciplinary. Diverse and complementary competencies to enrich the team·
    • • Its openness to the inside and outside world. Feedback between team members is permanent. The team is focused on the outside: the user. It might include co-design workshops with those users

    Its capability to work together depends on the behavior of each team member. Design Thinking is based on 8 ground rules. They are constantly reinforced to enhance the collaborative work. It is agile governance, so called Governance Thinking




    Similar to other agile methods, the team coach contributes to boost the team’s performance towards delivery. He is responsible for the innovation process while the team is responsible for the result.

    The innovation process

    Its main characteristics are

    • • Its iterations. Contrary to linear processes well used in corporate, the teams go smoothly forward and backward between the different phases
    • • Its phases. They federate the team members around each step
    • • Its speed. From a few hours to few months depending on the complexity of the challenge
    • • Its spirit. All is prototyping till the final implementation. It gives the openness needed to continuously innovate till a satisfactory solution
    • • Its divergence and convergence. Divergence opens possibilities while convergence enables the selection of an idea to make it more tangible in order to test it with users


    This process is common sense and uses numerous elements to other methods. You need to trust such process by applying it systematically

    What makes a difference is its holistic implementation facilitated by a coach to find solutions to complex challenges

    The modular space

    It is key to create such environment enabling creativity, interaction and action. It differs from the traditional work environment with:

    • Modular. Such space shall be easily changed over time. Wheels help a lot…
    • Stand up to support active behaviors
    • • Multiple windows, walls and white boards to write and stick post-its
    • Cosy spaces with the famous red sofa, visible in many innovation labs
    • • A kitchen with tea, coffee, snacks
    • • A workshop with prototyping materials and equipments

    This picture illustrates such innovation space. Does it look like our usual meeting room!?


    These 3 elements are just common sense. The challenge is to combine them and to grow the team effectiveness. Team coaching techniques are one of the keys

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