IBM Design Thinking

In October 2016 we had the opportunity to participate in a workshop with designers from the IBM Studios in Dublin who came to the college. It was a great experience  to see this process first hand and I was able to utilise it in a number of things I have done since including my Product design & implementation module. I will base this post on the application of design thinking to that module.

Design thinking is a method of breaking down a problem into bite size chunks of information, discovering who your audience is and spotting gaps and opportunities.

We began with an analysis of our target person, discovering who they were, what they thought, what they needed, said & thought. I felt that the person I was designing for was the head of the colege. The first image below shows the qualities of the principle as I saw them.


Head of College

The second image shows what I believe they say, do, think and feel. This gives us a further insight into what can be done to aid them.


The 3rd image here shows whats called an as-is chart, it helps us see a clearer picture and spot opportunities.

As Is Chart #1


The next stage was to come up with the really out there ideas, it’s pretty tough tryint to brainstorm with just one person but a few of the ideas were a little out there, the others were more relevant.


The last chart here is the feasibility chart. This allows me to place the ideas from the last stage onto a graph. The axis go from easy & cheap to expensive & hard, and from low priority for the client to high priority.

Obviously the ideal outcome is to come up with a winning idea that is both cost free and of high value / priority to the client. When the ideas are placed on this graph you can get an idea of where to begin your process of design.

The outcome for my project was that the digital email of the interactive PDF was the least expensive and most effective idea to produce, followed by: YouTube, Print magazine and Website.








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