A Learning Platform for Design Thinking 0

Dr. Charles Burnette has been a frequent speaker in European design schools and at the European Union’s Cumulus Program on Design Education and is widely published on topics such as design management, design systems, ecological design and design education. He is now writing a book about the design model, its foundations in cognitive science and its application.

The seven principles of Dr. Charles Burnette’s IDeSiGN:

  1. I is for intending
  2. D is for Defining
  3. e is for Exploring
  4. S is for Suggesting
  5. i is for Innovating
  6. G is for Goal getting
  7. N is for kNowing

Related Podcast and Transcription: Design Thinking Course


Dr. Charles Burnette on The iDesign model

You can explain it in as complicated a way as needed, or as simple a way as needed. The first part of the model is intentional thinking. What it is, what’s your goal? What are you concerned about? What do you want to do?

The next part of the model involves referential thinking. What kind of resources? How do you describe them? How do you define them? How do you find them? You really are looking for the things that might help you reach your goal. If your goal is to make something that won’t show stains, then it depends on what the problem is, but it runs all over the place. Stainless steel is a resource for some things, and so forth.

The third part of the model is analogical thinking. It’s associate thinking. It’s centered all the things that brings ideas out as networks and is expressed in networks or linkages between one thing, and another, and that’s called relational thinking in the model.

There are seven parts, and I’ll tell you why in a minute but the fourth one is formative thinking which is how you express your thoughts and how you express your proposals and the conclusions that you think you’ll reach, how you project the word to the audience, how you use the media that are available to you. I mean; language is one medium, but so it television and what have you. You have to represent your ideas for the medium and the audience, of the user that you’re addressing.

Then there is procedural thinking, a kind of time sequence. What do I do next? How can I be a better craftsman? How can I reach a state of flow where I’m doing everything at the best of my ability and being challenged all the time?

After that, there is evaluative thinking, where you’re constantly judging what you’ve done with respect to your intentions and the situation that you’re in. Evaluating what you achieved and going with it that way.

Then the final one, the seventh one is reflective thinking where you commit your prior thoughts to memory, you edit them, or you assimilate them into what you already know. When you come around again to a new situation which always occurs in the formative thought, your perceptions then you use reflective thinking to call on what you know to interpret what you’re experiencing.

That starts the whole process and usually if you want to keep on going with that train of thought once you have interpreted your situation from reflective thought, and nothing is wrong. You understand it because you’re there, and then there’s no real stimulus for intentional thinking because you already have the knowledge that you need.

But if you went into a slight need or desire of any type, then that’ll kick intentional thinking and the process starts going again. I don’t know if I gave you a model of the kinds of thinking, but also a bit of a clue about how they work together or get started and kick one another off.


Related Podcast and Transcription: Design Thinking Course

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Participation is the Platform 0

I ended my last blog post, What Happened to My Linear World, with the statement…

Reality was that the world had more influence on what I was doing, and I had less control. My planning became more frequent and less conclusive; I discovered I was no longer living in a linear world.

What should I do?

Is the answer to do less planning and more reacting? Today’s world has emerged with new thinking to compensate. Some of this thinking have been captured in the philosophies of the Outcome Based-Innovation, Design Thinking and Service Design. To a lesser degree Lean, the Maker Movement and the Lean StartupTM support this new thinking. These philosophies have taken the pulse of the present and moved decision making towards a customer-centered approach. They are more aligned with the customer and realize that their success does not rely on pushing product to a customer. Rather, understanding the customer’s “Job-To-Be-Done” and participating in what the customer needs to accomplish. This participation is the platform.

There are a lot of tools this has surfaced. Technology has greatly assisted this movement most notably with the ability to perform prototypes both online and offline. The digital world has led because of the ease of making changes based on the collection of data. However, the offline world is catching up with 3D printing and augmented reality schemes tumbling in price and expanding in use. Again, this supports participation within the platform.

The question really becomes do we still plan? With prototypes and trials so easy to use and inexpensive do we just throw out the planning and look for a reaction from the customer. Many see that as an alternative and segment out the early adaptors and willing participants. Other take it a step further and will try different trials or multiple segments to determine the best type of participation.

Escape from loop

A new set of tools have evolved to support this culture, no longer are we using linear tools that were used to measure and support well-defined end to end processes. Today’s world has introduced more and more uncertainty. As a result, it has forced us to get closer and closer to our customers reducing reaction and decision time. To do this, once again a new set of tools need to be utilized. This methodology has been introduced to us through the concepts of Design Thinking and as good as an overview that I have found is contained in the book, Designing for Growth: A Design Thinking Toolkit for Managers (Columbia Business School Publishing)clip_image001.

This set of tools:

  1. Visualization: using imagery to envision possible future conditions
  2. Journey Mapping: assessing the existing experience through the customer’s eyes
  3. Value Chain Analysis: assessing the current value chain that supports the customer’s journey
  4. Mind Mapping: generating insights from exploration activities and using those to create design criteria
  5. Brainstorming: generating new alternatives to the existing business model
  6. Concept Development: assembling innovative elements into a coherent alternative solution that can be explored and evaluated
  7. Assumption Testing: isolating and testing the key assumptions that will drive success or failure of a concept
  8. Rapid Prototyping: expressing a new concept in a tangible form for exploration, testing, and refinement
  9. Customer Co-Creation: enrolling customers to participate in creating the solution that best meets their needs
  10. Learning Launch: creating an affordable experiment that lets customers experience the new solution over an extended period of time, so you can test key assumptions with market data

Along with these basic tools, I believe that Osterwalder’s Business Model Generationclip_image001[1] Template, Lean 3P, and Kanban are other integral parts. If you notice, these are all very visual tools based on participation in the platform, not in the corner office.

However, do I just use these tools and watch everything unfold?

Is there a planning instrument that works?

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What Happened to My Linear World 1

I grew up in the manufacturing world. I think I might have learned how to weld before I learned how to walk. I ended up putting myself through college along with help from the G.I. bill as a welder and later moved into industrial drafting. I even built process equipment. I loved process mapping; value stream mapping and flow diagrams. I eventually moved into the sales and marketing area and fell in love once again with sales funnels, marketing funnels, customer journey mapping and later workflows. I was a process guy through and through.

Reinforcing all this, I think I purchase the first version of Microsoft Project. Not sure it was the first, but it came on (2) 5¼” floppy discs. My projects were always lined up on a Gantt charts. These projects were well defined, well scoped, and we delivered on time, on budget and at high quality.

Linear Thinking

I was first introduced to Lean through Peter Senge and The Fifth Discipline but for the life of me could not understand what Senge was thinking with all those loops. I eventually move into Six Sigma, later Lean Six Sigma and later Lean. I was still primarily a process thinker, but those loops still bothered me.

As time moved forward, I saw the world changing around me. Those end to end linear processes that I understood so well and could map out have started getting shorter and shorter. I started justifying doing the work using the analogy that it was the planning that was important more so than the plan itself. However, reality was that the world had more influence on what I was doing, and I had less control. My planning became more frequent and less conclusive, I discovered I was no longer living in a linear world.

What should I do?

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A Case for 2 Vision Statements 0

When you read most vision statements, at best, they provide lip service to the customer. I have a tendency to agree, your vision statement should be about you. In a past podcast, Ari Weinzweig, one of the founding partners of Zingerman’s Community Businesses discussed his ideas of writing a vision, when he said;

The visioning work is really integral to what we do. There were four essays on it in the first part of the business book, and we don’t really do anything significant here without writing a vision and the vision is pretty in depth. Our 2020 vision is about six or seven pages. It describes how we work together, how we’re going to interact with the world. It talks about how we’re going to improve our quality and our service. It talks about our finances. It paints pictures of what we’re doing. It talks about fun, about opportunity, responsibility. Visioning is a very key piece of the way we work, and it’s always about starting with a very clear measurable picture of what your desired future is.

Joe:  How do you keep that from not changing? I mean; you stick to it? You really think you have a crystal ball that it’s that clear?

Ari:  It’s not a guess. It’s not a prediction. It’s what you want. See, most of the world is trying to figure out the right answer. We’re just saying this is our answer. If the question is, what is the best way to make the most money? This is not the answer.

The question is, what’s an organization I want to go to work in, and that we all want to go to work in the year 2020? This is the answer. That’s not going to change unless I have a personality transformation or something.

Joe:  I mean you open up your heart, and this is really who I want to be.

Ari:  That’s the point. Yes. A vision comes from your heart and your head. It’s not from the outside in.

JoeWhat you’re saying here is it’s really true that aspiration of where you want to be, where you want to go.

Ari:  Yes. A big piece of that is having customers who love what we do. It’s not ignoring the customer, but it’s not saying, what does the market want and then what do we do? Now obviously the market has to want what we do, or one of the natural laws of business is we’re going to fail. It doesn’t mean you can ignore everything literally, but it’s really about what your dreams and your hopes are. We look at it as all one life, so our vision talks about having fun. We’re going to spend a lot of time at work. We want to have a good time while we’re doing it. It talks about learning. It’s really about creating the future that you want to be part of.

In this Customer Centric world of cooperation and co-creation how does a customer fit in? How do they become part of our future? I think the answer lies in Who Do You Want Your Customers to Become? If you create this vision of how your organization is going to change, your customer will also have to change. In the before mentioned book, author Michael Schrage describes a customer vision below;

The customer vision, however, is fundamentally different. A customer vision statement explicitly identifies the qualities and attributes the organization aspires to create in its customers. The overwhelming majority of companies, however, don’t possess or publish customer vision statements.

A "vision of the customer" perspective evokes the design and innovation sensibilities of the innovator’s ask. Take the broader view of what your innovations really ask customers to become. The larger question—the "macro-ask"—is, if the customer were a product or a service, what would its most valuable and appealing attributes be? What customer values, expectations, perceptions, or behaviors does your vision transform? How do your innovations enable your customers—or key customer segments to achieve this?

When we take the time to write two visions, I think it provides a great deal of insight. It challenges you to see how powerful your vision statements are and more importantly how compatible they are. Can you envision both to be equal?

Current State = Current Customers

Company Vision = Customer Vision

Future State = Future Customers

How Good is Your Math?


Related Podcast and Transcription: The Aroma of a Good Vision – Ari Weinzweig

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An Outsiders View on a Lean Implementation 1

In this 2nd part of 2-part podcast, Bob Petruska, author of Gemba Walks for Service Excellence: The Step-by-Step Guide for Identifying Service Delighters, discusses what he has learned about  Sur-Seal Corporation. Bob Petruska

Bob is working with Mick Wilz, Director of Enterprise Excellence and Co-Owner of Sur-Seal Corporation, on one of the tracks, Keep Your Organization’s Chain Straight., at the upcoming ASQ Charlotte Conference on April 8th, 2014.

In part 1 of the podcast, How Sur-Seal Became a Visual Organization, I discussed with Mick, Sur-Seal’s Lean journey. In this 2nd part, I put Bob on the spot and asked him from an outside perspective (Bob is one of the best change agents, I know) to comment on what Sur-Seal had accomplished.  The insight Bob gives is excellent.

 

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Can You Use Lean for a Turnaround? 0

PAS was one of the bottom rung players in providing cost-effective repair and overhaul solutions for the aerospace, oilfield and industrial markets. In the first week of taking over, Bob Weiner implemented Lean training and started weekly Kaizan events with the key metric of turnaround time.

Related Podcast and Transcription: Using Lean in a Turnaround


Excerpt from Podcast with Bob Weiner:

I came on board about two months ahead of that in prepping for the closure. What we did is basically we planned everything. It’s an amazing story. We literally planned everything ahead of time. When July 3rd hit, it was basically we were PAS, and we were PAS running.

To put that into perspective, the organization was put in place and announced on July 3rd or July 5th I guess, the day when we actually started.

We put an organization in on that day and knowing how poor we were from a delivery standpoint, we basically we started in two ways. We were going to put the organization in place, and we were going to go after bringing in new business on the first day knowing that we had a very poor track record.

Lean, I can get into a little detail later, but our Lean system actually started one week later. It was off and running really on the very first day. The very first thing we did is we got all the employees together, laid out the plan and started as soon as we thanked everybody for being part of PAS.

It was amazingly accelerated. My background, I ran engine services for Pratt & Whitney. I ran their engine assembly and test for all their large commercial, military.

I had three other opportunities prior to that where I implemented global Lean Six Sigma systems. And, you could go back over these, and where typically in the beginning, you go back 10 or 15 years, these things take six years to do and then you get them down to four years and then you get them down to two years.

Our implementation was absolutely about as focused as you could ever see anything. And we were done, well you’re never done in Lean, but essentially, we had a turnaround of the whole company in six months. And, it was as accelerated as you can imagine.

We went from industry worst ?? well I wouldn’t say worst. There’s always somebody worse. But one of the worst in the industry to the industry best in all our product lines in ten months and six months on turnaround time which is really the core of it.

And the way we did it and I’ve done Lean Six Sigma, its limitations, and you kind of get caught up into having ten metrics and you get caught up into all different ways of measuring it. And, we did it totally different. This was totally focused on turnaround time. And if you perform in this industry, you grow, and you win. And so, everything was based on turnaround time.

And, turnaround time is basically the time it takes for me to get the part in until you get the part out. And so, it’s very simple, if you reduce the amount of time it takes to turning the part, you’re going to reduce your cost, you’re going to reduce all the waste that’s in there, and then you’re going to grow your business, and you’re going to reduce your cost of the business. And so, it was all centered on that. So, it was just totally focused on turnaround time.

And so, how we did it is basically we just, on day one, which was really one week later, we started. I had to bring some outside help in, and we had our own group that we brought in. Outside was the name of the group. And, we had them and we had our own team. And, my own team was really, I brought in some people, and so we handpicked kind of the people, the key people around the company which we assessed prior to that.

And that and some outside help, what we did on day one is we did training. So, we did the first thing. We did plant by plant. So on the first week we would take our main plant, we did week long training; we broke for a week, and then we did Kaizen events, a couple of Kaizen events in each plant. And, we focused on turnaround time on our main product lines.

And then, we would repeat that every month within that plant. Then the next week we started the same thing in another plant. So, we hit all our plants basically training, Kaizen event, training, and Kaizen event, and then Kaizen event, Kaizen event, Kaizen event in every plant.

And so, the training became off of the Kaizen event, and the Kaizen event became the means of getting the results. And so, that’s how we drove this thing.

And, we just did it for six months straight. And, we may have done Kaizen event after Kaizen event in the same area but ultimately we just focused right across. So, it’s almost too simple but it was very elementary how we did it.

So, it was training, Kaizen event, and Kaizen event. And, every Kaizen event was a follow up behind it. So, it was training, Kaizen event, follow up on the Kaizen event, next Kaizen event, follow up. So, every month there was another Kaizen event and the follow up was a couple of weeks after the first Kaizen event. And so, it became just a routine.

And, you might ask how do you do it, how do you get so focused on it? My role as the CEO was to attend and drive every single event. So, I was at the Kaizen event close out every Friday. And so, it was very regimented close starting at Monday the kickoff, 4:00 every day, a daily report out Friday morning, the report out of the team, very straight forward but no letup in terms of how you did it. So, that’s kind of the high level of how we did it. And, it was just relentless, to say the least. And, it was extremely effective, and it worked very well.

So January one of 2007 we were on our own. And so, I would stack it up against anybody who’s ever done Lean on a global basis to how fast you could do something, how focused you could be in getting it done.


Related Podcast and Transcription: Using Lean in a Turnaround

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Good Work is About Vocation, 0

One of the founding partners of Zingerman’s Community Businesses and the author of a number of articles and books on food and businesses, Ari Weinzweig commented on what it takes to lead an organization. An excerpt from the podcast is below. However, I encourage you to skip the blog post and review the entire transcription. 

Related Podcast and Transcription: The Aroma of a Good Vision – Ari Weinzweig


Ari Weinzweig:  Something that I realized as I was working on all this is that we really, I think, are creating a new way to work, or a new approach to work. Wendell Berry, who, I think is probably in his late seventies in Kentucky, is a fabulous writer about traditional American life and rural life, and very reflective and interesting. He wrote a piece about the difference between good work and bad work.

Good work really is about vocation, and about passion, and feeling good about what you do. I believe that that’s what we do. I believe when you live the natural laws of business; that’s what you create. Bad work is what most of the world knows, which is where you don’t really like what you do, but you tolerate it in order to make a living.

Not that that’s evil, but life is short, and it’s a whole lot of hours spent doing something you don’t really want to do. I believe that creating a new way to work is about creating a relationship to work that’s really positive, where people can be at work and enjoy themselves.

Feel nurtured, supported, and learn things that are of value in their life, and that they can move back and forth between what they do at home and what they do at work in a really relatively seamless way.

That is very different from the old model, which is exhausting and where people are burning out and not enjoying themselves, and that work is this onerous burden that you tolerate getting through to retirement or to the weekend. I don’t mean people shouldn’t take time off for retire, but I mean, it’s just creating a setting in which people are excited and enthusiastic about their work. We’re working with people; we’ve got 18?year?old bussers and, whatever. People who…it’s not like they’re coming here for a career, necessarily, but they can find a positive setting in which they feel honored and respected, in which they contribute positively to the organization. It’s a pretty cool thing.


Related Podcast and Transcription: The Aroma of a Good Vision – Ari Weinzweig

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