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The Five Pillars of Design Thinking

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FREDDIE OST: When we think about our process, we…most of the time we start out with thinking where we wanna end up and it’s always like we have to have the highest ambition, we have to land somewhere amazing that is gonna go into the history books and because we have to have that you have to reach the stars. It’s like a cliche but it’s kind of true for us. So starting out with like that and then knowing that we have to kind of get us as close as possible training possible, you should probably reach your highest level of what’s possible.
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So when we for example, decide that we wanna make something by hand or stop motion, that it would probably take more time than doing it in digital or 3D or whatever. It’s like our processes for us that we feel much more energised doing it that way. But also because we feel like the fastest, most effective way is not… doesn’t have to be the best way and the end result ending up where it’s the highest level of what’s possible. It’s probably not when you have to be effective and straight to the goal or whatever.
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KIRBY CLARK: The approach that I take to design thinking can vary depending on the project. So I do take the five pillars approach where we go through empathising, which would be researching, defining the problem, which would be really refining the brief. From refining the brief, I’d go back to actually researching and empathising a little bit more. Ideating, testing out your ideas, refining, seeing where the problems are, probably going back to a bit more research and then finalising the concept, and then putting it out to build. So I also like to refer back to, the disruptive design methodology as another approach, which is formed by, a range of mining, landscaping and buildings.
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So that was actually, developed by Dr Leyla Acaroglu, who is an industrial designer and also a sustainability provocateur. So the disruptive design methodology is a really good, way of defining problems, researching and also seeing how those problems can be solved, through different lensing and then prototyping. So that would include mining, which is researching, digging up as much information as possible, landscaping, which is then determining which information is relevant, which isn’t what’s connected, what’s useful, and then building, which would be then ideating and then sort of prototyping and going back to research if you need to. So they’re all very similar, design processes and ways of thinking.
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They can just use different terminology, but basically they kind of go through the same thing really. And that’s extremely valuable because once you go through these processes at the end you should come up with a solution that’s quite viable and has already gone through all of the hiccups or the problems that you might have encountered to ensure that it is actually a good solution.
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ERIK KOCKUM: I mean the process can also kill something so that… You know, because it becomes, it maybe go through too many tests or what they say, like, you know, as a bit like with an idea that is sort of, it dies after whereas five meetings or something and idea is not alive anymore because there’s too many people in every time trying to like, you know, would you say?
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FREDDIE OST: Risk minimise.
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ERIK KOCKUM: Yeah. Risk minimise it. And, and I think that’s the dangerous part would like maybe having a too much like of a determined like process that you have to follow that maybe you, sometimes it’s like, of course that like even if we have our process step we end up maybe with the first idea we had, which just came from somewhere, you know, so, you have to be a bit like, open minded in that sense I think that is not always that that’s the way, but, but it’s like a process is some way, maybe it’s some way to secure, you know, call it that like, it’s at least, way to be a bit more like professional with your work.
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KIRBY CLARK: So the design process in real life does vary, project to project also depends on what type of project it is and where the brief is coming from, what your scope of work sees as a designer as well. But the full process could take six years. It could take six weeks depending on what you’re working with. So it would start out with a client approaching you or you approaching a client to tend to something. Basically you would have a problem to solve or a brief that the client has given you. You research the client, you researched the target market, you research what they’re trying to achieve with their brand or with their restaurant or with their store.
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It’s also important to research things like the location of what you’re doing, the demographic, who you’re trying to target what the opening hours might be, what the budget is, is very important to actually determine that as soon as possible. Sooner rather than later… (LAUGHS) And then you go on from collecting all of that information to then ideating and designing a concept. The concept will then go to the client for feedback. And that’s when you sort of refining. So it’s almost like pre prototyping where you’re prototyping in concept. You might do some 3D renders, floor plan layouts, and then you gain feedback, you refine the design, get approval, get the money and build…
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(LAUGHS) And from building it’s also important to sort of come back and review the design and say OK, how is this actually working in real life and what could we improve in future?
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