Design thinking has been an important management trend over the last decade. As innovation has become a strategic imperative for companies, taking a design thinking approach seems like a perfect model for developing new products and services that will increase customer satisfaction and loyalty.
Yet these developments can be quite self-centered and local. They ignore the not-always-positive impact that innovation may have on other humans, other systems, and common resources like water, food, and our climate.
In this article:
- I argue that design thinking is not a new concept and explain why it has aroused such a keen interest in recent years;
- I highlight the value of design thinking as an innovation process and stress the implications it has, as a mindset, for organizational culture;
- I emphasize the need to use design holistically – with a system perspective – to develop meaningful and socially responsible innovations.