8 Oct, 2018/mvsblog / mvsblog

As I was browsing the Agenda of the TiECON 2018, the workshop on Design Thinking caught my attention.  This brought back memories of an earlier session by Arun Jain (Promoter of Polaris & Intellect Design) where he had mentioned that Design Thinking can be applied to any small business, and/or even in a village panchayat.  That earlier session had triggered my curiosity and I wanted to know more.  I had checked with my mentor, who suggested a very old book written by Don Norman, “The Design Of Everyday Things”(1988).


When I started reading, it felt like “all this is common sense”, and “I know this”.  But as I went in deeper, it set me thinking.  There are many design thinkers who have made us believe that this is simple common sense, which is really not common.

The book gave me perspective of few elements like Experience Design, Industrial Design, Interaction Design and Human Centered Design.  I also understood the principles of interaction like affordances, signifiers, and feedback mechanism.  I enjoyed the book and it gave me some input on the fundamentals – but the question was to know how to implement this in our business and bring in a major shift in the Organization thinking.

We are a 20+ years young organization with many stakeholders who have put in 10+ years and are in the comfort zone of teaching what they know to peers and colleagues.  Someone recently asked me what is your vision for the company.  Though I was not comfortable talking about it, a small group works with me on this.

So, the TieCON workshop came as a solution to many of my unanswered questions – and the icing on the cake was that it was being conducted by the same Arun Jain who had set me thinking many months ago.  I went to the workshop with an open mind to learn as the speaker was in himself a unique combination of being a successful entrepreneur who jumped out of his comfort zone to build high enterprise value for his stakeholders.

Arun Jain opened the session by stating – “Design your Thinking” & “Think Your Design”… this was like a magic wand that opened the locker of thoughts.  According to him, some of the necessary elements that help in designing your thinking are Listening, Dialogue, Observation & Reading.

He spoke about the “Five Drivers of Design” – SEPIA – S – Skill; E – Expertise; P – Perspective; I – Idea; A – Alignment.  The term “idea” was mentioned in the context of connecting patterns in a new way, and this got me thinking and became the starting point of mapping my thoughts on what I should do in the organization.

Arun went on to speak about the FIVE Frictional Force – “D CAFÉ”… does it sound similar? Yes, it is in one way similar with D – Doubt; C – Conflict; A – Acceptance; F – Fear; & E – Ego (I know all).

This was enough for me to get going and I was all set to go back and verify where I was with respect to my thoughts, beliefs and the organization.

As my thoughts were racing, the speaker continued the workshop by talking about howthe multiplier effect works.  It was through “VAL”  V – Vulnerability; A – Appreciation; L – Limiting Beliefs (order taker to Agenda Setter).  This topic attracted good amount of discussion on the speakers perspective.  This formed the base, and the speaker had given us the route to take to build a thinking organization.

The session continued and the speaker was mentioning about how the multiplier effect works.  He said that it was through “VAL” V- Vulnerability, A-Appreciation and L – Limiting beliefs ( order taker to Agenda setter) . These topic attracted good amount of discussion on various perspectives & gave insight on how I should think to build a thinking organization.

With the concepts in place, finally he came in to business to speak on “Elements of Designing the Business”.  I felt I had reached my “AHA” moment that I had been waiting for.  This was going to be very useful to me as I could use it even when I meet start Ups who come in for mentoring.  When he said, it is “Belief” – I was stumped. “Hey! I have enough belief in what I do till I fail J “So what is it that I don’t have?

When Arun Jain expanded the acronym., B – Brand Capital; E – End Customer; L – leadership; I – Intellectual Capital; E – Execution Capital; F – Finance Capital., I understood what it takes and the experience of the speaker in building a thoughtful company called “Intellect Design“.

Arun Jain is a practitioner and not a consultant, so there is so much of conviction and answers for different scenarios.  His experience helped him articulate with depth.

He ignited my thoughts on Design Thinking many months ago, and I took the first step by reading more on the same.  With this workshop, I experience the feel of being with a mentor who has given me the next set of homework, “Plan your 2025 and come back”.






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