Takeaways and lessons learned from the Design Thinking Jam
Weren’t able to attend the 2018 Design Thinking jam? We’ve got you covered – in this article, we’ll go over everything you need to know about the first of these events, as well as cover the state of affairs alongside the “L’Itinéraire” project.
Since last summer, Talsom’s innovation experts have been accompanying the community group throughout a comprehensive Design Thinking process in order to help the organization and its vendors come to terms with the reality of digital content consumption in the context of street ‘zine sales.
A human-scale ideation session
September 13th, 2018: The Faubourg Québec space was buzzing. The reality is that it’s uncommon to have a gathering of about 180 people underneath an overpass to host an outdoor Design Thinking workshop. An unusual venue, a sunny afternoon, and a strong desire to make a lasting, positive impact – all ingredients that help stimulate creative thinking. As the participants arrived and spread out across about thirty picnic tables, we got to work.
A space for unorthodox ideas
Following a detailed explanation by the event hosts coupled with a clear understanding of the worker and working environment, each team was assigned a design challenge for which they had to come up with solutions via a brainstorming session.
Identified beforehand by the project teams, these four design challenges are the results of initial research and observation conducted over the first months of the project:
- How do we increase visibility, awareness and contributions for the L’Itinéraire organization?
- How do we enable potential buyers to purchase L’Itinéraire products using a payment method other than cash?
- How do we ensure that the interaction between the vendor and the public is memorable, pleasant and mutually beneficial for both parties involved?
- How do we highlight the vendor’s best qualities through a more relevant and interesting product or service?
Quantity, broad thinking and an open mind were the keywords of the day – there aren’t any bad ideas. All told, over a thousand ideas were put to paper.
“Ideation is the funnest part of Design Thinking – that’s when we let our craziest ideas out!” – Adil Mansouri, Tech Strategy & Innovation Consultant.
Once all the ideas are categorized, participants vote for their favourites. Out of this ideation step, every team has to narrow their choice down to one single idea in order to move forward.
When an idea comes to life
What’s the next step after we’ve identified the right idea? We need to make it real. To accomplish this, the event participants were provided with boxes containing various tools and materials allowing them to craft a version of their idea. Each team then recorded their very own presentation of their prototype.
Following this step, known as the “imagination phase”, over 30 prototypes were developed by our participants.
“One of the interesting quirks of Design Thinking is how much deeper we dive than in what folks think of as traditional brainstorming when we’re facing a challenge. What each participant was able to accomplish within the span of 3 hours involved placing themselves in the skin of the organization’s workers, learning about their on-the-ground reality, helping find ideas and developing them.” – Dany Jutras, Tech Strategy & Innovation Consultant.
Three weeks later – where are we now?
Thanks to all the content coming out of the Design Thinking Jam, the team was able to collect considerable data to move the project forward. The team members learned a great deal about the organization’s workers and their environment. Furthermore, the team participated once again in a new ideation exercise based upon hundreds of ideas stemming from the last event. By adopting an iterative approach, the final proposed answer stands a greater chance of achieving success with the workers and the public.
“Upon review of all the ideas and prototypes, we chose the ones with the greatest feasbility and potential impact to push them even further. We then presented those to the team at L’itinéraire.” – Valérie Dionne, Innovation & Tech Strategy Consultant.
Ideas are only brought to life when there’s work behind them. That’s why our teams evaluate the selected project for feasibility, impact and viability. Design Thinking considers potential solutions along a financial, social and technological axis.
Testing prototypes in the field
This past week, the team turned their focus on the next phase in Design Thinking: co-creation.
Coinciding with the release of the latest edition of L’Itinéraire magazine, our experts accompanied the vendors at the points of sale to test two carefully chosen payment options with the aid of prototypes and thorough testing, in order to determine various hypotheses for each potential solution.
Over the next two weeks, the team will continue to work with the public and with the vendors to not only validate the initial ideas which sprung out from the Design Thinking Jam, but also to foster additional innovation and potential solutions. Furthermore, L’Itinéraire can already begin envisioning what the ultimate idea will look like, a solution that has already been validated, tested and accepted by both the public and the vendors.
Live – or relive – the 2018 Design Thinking Jam experience?