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How Can Design Thinking Help You Reach Your Goals?

“DESIGN IS A FUNNY WORD SOME PEOPLE THINK MEANS HOW IT LOOKS. BUT OF COURSE IF YOU DIG DEEPER, IT'S REALLY HOW IT WORKS.”

How Can Design Thinking Help You Reach Your Goals?

January 16, 2017
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By Beth Inglis

“DESIGN IS A FUNNY WORD SOME PEOPLE THINK MEANS HOW IT LOOKS. BUT OF COURSE IF YOU DIG DEEPER, IT'S REALLY HOW IT WORKS.”

I love this quote because Preting Consulting is built around a similar principal called Design Thinking. We create a process that guides ideas and thoughts towards a useable and purposeful end. This can work for anyone in any profession.

Creating Systems and Tools

At Preting, we use Design Thinking to create systems that make our back office functions more efficient and useful and to communicate our culture to employees and clients. We also incorporate Design Thinking when working with clients, this includes using and creating tools to build the right systems to help our clients reach their goals.

Whether we are creating internal tools and systems, or external ones for our clients, we ask a lot of questions. As we have grown so have our systems. Each step along the way we have spent a lot of time understanding the right questions to ask to get the right answers. From the answers we gather, we can design the best systems.

Here are three of our favorite tools we use to help our clients reach success.

Tool #1: The Business Model Canvas

Some of our favorite tools come from Design a Better Business, especially the Business Model Canvas. Yet, over the years, we found that the Business Model Canvas wasn’t exactly the right tool to use with government agencies. In government, much of the “revenue” is not measured in money, but rather in lives saved or mission impact. The Mission Model Canvas was the tool we needed.

Tool #2: The Mission Model Canvas

Using the Mission Model Canvas, we use the same methodology we do for the Business Model Canvas, but instead of focusing on the bottom line with money, we focus on impact. For example, when working with a nonprofit, we will focus more on Key Partners. The Key Partners are the organization’s donors that provide the funds that ultimately enable the organization to create impact.

I have found that many mission-oriented entities are hyper focused on their missions, in a good way. However, drilling down into the criteria to measure success can be challenging and may not be considered “fun” work. Using the Mission Model Canvas helps to make defining goals and measuring success easier.

Tool #3: The Timeline Exercise

Another tool we created for our clients is the Timeline Exercise. After setting the stage by defining a company’s environment and customer base, we put the actions into a timeline. This sounds simple, but the clarity that comes with it is pretty powerful.

By incorporating Design Thinking and sharing various tools with our clients, they better understand the environment in which they operate and the customers they serve. As a result, we are able to provide them with insightful, forward thinking solutions.

What tools do you use to reach your goals? I’d love to hear from you. Leave a comment below or email me.