Increasingly, organizations of all kinds have adopted many practices from the field of design to enhance their innovation capabilities and identify potential new markets and product developments. Design thinking does not just represent a concept. Design thinking is both a mindset and a process. It refers to a systematic process for structuring a problem, gathering information, and generating creative alternatives/solutions. Thinking like a designer can transform the way you approach the world when imagining and creating new solutions for the future. Design thinking gives you faith in your creative abilities and a process to take action through when faced with a difficult challenge.
Design thinking is human centric: it begins by understanding the needs and motivations of people. You talk with these people, listen to them and observe them in their natural environment. You then consider how best to help them. Innovative products like the first computer mouse for Apple, Proctor and Gamble’s Swiffer and Febreze products, and Bank of America’s “Keep the Change” program all were created using the design thinking process.
In this two hour workshop, participants will be provided an overview of the design thinking process, and will be actively engaged in a sampling of experiential exercises that will mirror the five stages of the design thinking process. This session is highly interactive and completely hands-on, to ensure participants a solid understanding of the ways in which design thinking can generate innovative approaches to problem solving in organizations.
Facilitator: Lori Coakley, Ph.D.
Lori Coakley teaches Leading Effective Organizations, a foundation MBA course at Bryant University, as well as graduate-level elective courses in management.
Known for her fast-talking style and real-world approach, Coakley has received several teaching awards at Bryant. Pedagogy – or the art of teaching – is her passion.
“I’m always thinking how I can make things different or better for my students,” Coakley said. “I want them to walk out of my class and say ‘Wow. I can use that in my interview or my internship.’ Everything I do begins in the classroom – research or consulting, it all starts there.”
Coakley has published and presented on topics ranging from defense conversion to adaptive leadership to design thinking. She runs a robust consulting practice, teaching personal branding, negotiation, and women and leadership for clients that include B.J.’s Wholesale Club, Hope Global, and Women & Infants Hospital.
She’s a consistent contributor to the annual Women’s Summit, serves as a faculty fellow for the Hassenfeld Institute for Public Leadership, and is on the executive leadership team which plans and organizes Bryant’s annual three-day IDEA program, an all-freshmen student event focused on creative problem-solving and the innovation process.
“What I love about Bryant is that it is always evolving, and you’re allowed to be cutting edge – always finding new ways to challenge your students and to create an environment for achievement and success.”