Design thinking employs the methods and sensibilities of designers to developing technologies, products and services that meet people's needs. In recent years, business has embraced design thinking as a technique for driving creativity and innovation, even in areas not traditionally associated with design, such as business strategy.
The foundation of design thinking is the design process--a non-linear, iterative approach to practical problem solving. The design process begins with defining the problem and then researching possible solutions. This research may involve interviews, questionnaires, observation, photography and site visits, as well as consulting published research. The next step is ideation, or developing a concept, which is followed by prototyping, using drawings and/or models, and testing of various approaches. These are then subjected to critique by other designers, the client and end-users, and then further refined. Prototyping, feedback and learning are crucial to design thinking and the design process. They are the means through which the designer comes to align what is desirable with what is possible.
Interior designers are trained in design thinking and the design process from the very beginning of their education. As owners and principals in design firms, many also are experienced in managing teams of creative individuals. They can put these skills to work for their clients, helping them and their employees discover ways to better utilize interior environments to achieve their business goals.
A common misperception of designers is that they are only concerned about aesthetics. In fact, designers strive to come up with elegant but practical solutions to real-world problems. They set out to make things or spaces that people want. In addition, they are used to working within fixed budgets and on tight schedules.
When you hire an interior designer, you are engaging a professional who thrives on strategizing and solving problems, and who will work with you to maximize your investment and deliver tangible results.