How design thinking can help you ask the right questions (and get the right ones)

Expressed opinions Entrepreneur Contributors are their own.

Remember when Amazon was the biggest bookseller in the world? After expanding its products to include everything in the late 1990’s, and optimizing its perfection and distribution process in the late 1990’s, Amazon became the world’s largest retailer.

And what you may not know is that longtime children’s plaything, play-do, began its commercial life in the 1930’s to remove coal residue from wallpaper. Another successful pivot, I would say.

Although some may say that these evolutions were obvious, often overlooked are the detailed research, laborious planning, and behind-the-scenes nose-to-the-grindstone work that led to Pivot’s decision and implementation. In each case, they have seized it, despite obstacles we can scarcely imagine. “

Asking the right questions requires building a diverse and highly skilled team and hiring one of the most important strategies for managing any project: design thinking.

The power of the pivot

The design-thinking concept has been a business major for decades, but in recent years it has gained prominence as a powerful strategy for companies to provide innovative solutions that delight customers. It shows them the way to the truth faster and hopefully faster than the competition.

Many successful entrepreneurs say that their most valuable asset is time. And it’s true – in today’s ever-on-the-competitive business environment, time is critical for the market. The “new normal” of business is that “never normal” should be our guide; Market conditions are constantly changing. Thus, business problems should be solved now, and design thinking provides a well-proven process for solving those problems, both realistically and creatively.

If you want to apply design thinking to your strategic planning process, here are some key considerations to get you started:

Related: How design thinking can help build an entrepreneurial mindset

Does your price offer match a ‘must’ customer’s need?

Are you creating products or services that you want or have offered in the past? Or one that claims to be your target customer base? If this is the case then maybe you have a chance at sustainable (or growing) success.

Identify and understand yours Very important Buyer. If you have a bunch of them, focus most of your attention on one. Find out why they buy, what they’re willing to pay, what value they see in the product, and when they’ll see it (also known as the “purchase trigger”). Intensive analysis and design thinking will give you insight into determining the leading (or lagging) indicators that drive purchasing decisions.

Have you put together a diverse team with experience and perspectives to identify all the relevant challenges and opportunities?

Here, you are looking for diversity of thinking and perspectives – people who have applied vastly different “patterns” to similar problems. This is the only way you can go from answering a relatively simple question (“Are we creating the right product for the customer?”) To more complex and potentially transformative questions (“Are we really addressing the right customer?”).

As new ideas emerge, design thinking will help you identify and refine your assumptions so that they can be tested and, finally, verified as The best answer for now. In today’s normal environment, it’s not about long-term solutions; It’s about a flexible flow of answers that, combined, provides long-term success.

Tap the people for your team who have stumbled or stumbled before for the depth and breadth of the experience displayed with the experiment. Their experience and insights will be invaluable and will hopefully complement your own in your journey to reach the best solution.

Related: How a diverse team brings more creativity and engagement to your business

Can you embrace ambiguity?

Today’s entrepreneurs need the resilience of yesterday’s telemarketers. You need to know in advance that your life will be affected by the “structural” Learning through failure, ”eventually leads to success. If you do not see failure as learning, you will not have enough time to succeed.

Whether annual or quarterly, the days of the planning schedule are long gone. In today’s business environment, entrepreneurs must constantly repeat. Fortunately, design thinking can help people who are at risk of starting something from the ground up to make decisions with incomplete information and data at their disposal.

If you wait until you find the “perfect” solution, you will never get the answer and your business will never grow. This is why it is so important to work collaboratively with different groups of teammates to unveil a wide set of pivot options. With a diverse team, you are better able to maximize the data you have and then examine your options from every possible angle.

Related: Design thinking is not a process, it is a mindset

Are you ready to ‘present and recreate, present and recreate’?

It is important to have a strong opinion, to keep it separate. Strong opinions help you move forward. Holding them loose allows you to pivot as the ground information changes Design thinking is not a one and only completed project. You are looking for the right answer for today’s environment; It is unlikely it will be the right answer forever. So, you must practice that agility muscle again and again; Assign design thinking from time to time by asking and answering the right questions through repetition and experimentation. Times will change, and your business will adapt. Design is a surefire way to reduce the likelihood of thinking dust.

Flexing your design thinking skills and embedding them into your strategic planning process gives you the tools to redefine how you work. By making sure you ask the right questions, you can tackle the right challenges and reach the right solutions to enhance the value you offer your customers.

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