Radio Rotondes, in collaboration with Radio ARA #2 Empathy & Collaboration
In this episode we talk about Design Thinking. We start by demystifying this approach with Magdalena Jakubowska, founder of the Art Square Lab, a consultancy agency specialized in Design Thinking. Magdalena encourages us to question the world around us, to listen to others instead of assuming what they think, to ask questions before we jump into finding solutions. She encourages us to stay curious and to get out of our comfort zone. She emphasises that creativity is not found by doing the things we have always done nor by doing it alone.
We also share some resources so you can learn more about Design Thinking and put it into practice: IDEO U and Miro.
We talk with Sophie Lammar, Project Manager at the Up Foundation, about the project Design for Change. Its main goal is to show children that they can change the world around them, that they can be an actor for change. The project uses Design Thinking techniques to help children lead projects tackling some of their everyday problems.
We close the show with a creative prompt around brainstorming.
Our guest: Magdalena Jakubowska
Magdalena Jakubowska is a Design Thinking Facilitator and the founder of the Art Square Lab, a service design consultancy. Years ago, as she was running creative projects for young adults, she got to know artists and designers. She was intrigued by their mindset and the way they approached their work. That’s how she got into Design Thinking, by wanting to think like a designer.
She now helps organisations develop that same passion through workshops and training. Overall, she wants to encourage others to be curious and to listen to one another, to turn the insights they catch by being empathic into opportunities. To share her passion for Design Thinking with a wider audience, Magdalena also created the Luxembourg Design Thinking Community.
1:20 — 38:08 to listen to the interview.
Two useful resources
IDEO U is part of IDEO, a global design company that focuses on human-centered design and helps organisations grow and innovate. IDEO was co-founded by David Kelley, one of the key thinkers in the Design Thinking space. IDEO U is a way for IDEO to share the methods they have practiced for years with a wider audience. Their website provides a good overview of the philosophy and the practices of Design thinking. They also give examples of applications so you can read about tangible examples.
To go further, you can purchase David Kelley’s book Creative Confidence which offers techniques to develop your creativity.
After being afflicted with cancer a few years back, David Kelley has made it his life’s mission to help people develop their creativity. If you want to get to know this beautiful human, check out his TED Talk in the links below.
38:12 — 39:25 to listen to this part of the show. This part is narrated in French.
Miro is an online whiteboard that lets you collaborate with people and visualise your ideas together. It is perfect for remote brainstorm sessions, mood boards, strategic plans, meetings, etc. As collaborating and visualising ideas is a key part of Design Thinking, I wanted to share this resource with you. A lot of templates are available to help you make your ideas tangible. You can even digitise hand-written sticky notes with it. Its free version has many features and upgrading to the paid version is – in my experience – rarely necessary.
39:30 — 40:29 to listen to this part of the show. This part is narrated in French.
Featured creative place:
Up Foundation & Design for Change
The Up Foundation is an educational foundation committed to the success, excellence and well-being of children and young people in Luxembourg, as well as to offering equal educational opportunities. One of its projects is Design for Change.
Design for Change was initially created in India and has expanded to more than 70 countries. Its goal is to show children that they have creative power and can actively tackle the societal issues they witness. Design for Change uses Design Thinking principles to manage these projects. It was launched in Luxembourg in February 2020.
40:32 — 48:50 to listen to this part of the show. This interview is in French.
To illustrate the idea of diverging and converging, which is central to the Design Thinking mindset, I invite to do a little brainstorming. You’ll need to be at least 2 people and have some post-its. We start with a question we want to answer, or a problem we want to solve. Once the problem is clearly defined everyone can start generating ideas, alone, while writing them on post-its. Then everyone shares their ideas – this is the moment when we diverge, when we invite different ideas. The next step is to converge, to choose ideas. Once the ideas have been presented you choose the one you want to dive into. Then you start all over again, by diverging, by finding ideas around the one you just chose. You continue this process until you have an idea you are satisfied with.
49:00 — 52:50 to listen to the creative prompt. The creative prompt was shared in French.
(photo: Irfan Simsar via Unsplash)
Mentioned during the episode
“If I were given one hour to save the planet, I would spend 59 minutes defining the problem and one minute resolving it” – Albert Einstein
“Like a muscle, your creative abilities will grow and strengthen with practice.” – Tom Kelley
Quote from his book Creative Confidence: Unleashing the Creative Potential Within Us All
“Never go to a meeting without a prototype” – Simon Sinek
Idea of Yes, and vs. Yes, but
It’s an exercise to learn to build on each other’s ideas