Trying to sell service design and design thinking for innovation to people who have never come across it about the benefit it will have to their business is like trying to sell an airplane to a remote village without knowledge about how airplanes work, what they do or why they would ever have a need for one.
When we opened the war room at Union Cowork in San Diego we opened an airport in a remote village with very little awareness about the value or purpose of flight travel.
This is the ongoing problem that we can only address through demonstrating the power that design thinking can have on people’s business. It is only through through testimonial and case studies that this value can begun to become understood by people who see it as a gimmick.
Jamie Miller (Union’s owner) argues that the gap is not as wide as an ‘airport’, likening us to “A coke dropping in a remote village in Africa.”
Jamie Miller (Union’s owner) argues that the gap is not as wide as I express. The metaphor he uses to illustrate his point is one of “A coke dropping in a remote village in Africa.”..
“The design of the can, the obvious weight of a liquid is universal to the point these people understand they are to drink from it. The people embrace the fact it tastes amazing and makes them feel refreshed. They don’t need to know how complicated the process is to carbonate water or to establish distribution chains or what caffeine is. They only need to embrace it as something that adds value to their lives.”
This statement “It just has to have value.” is indicative of my original point. Nobody who has experience applying design thinking to their product or service formulation would ever make such a statement (this is the type of statement made by people who haven’t ‘tasted the value’). The value of service design has already been proven by companies who actually understand disruption — the burden isn’t on us to ‘preach’ that value.
As refreshing as design thinking may be perceived to be (yes, it should be refreshing) — it must be refreshing in order for it to feel inclusive and inviting. People aren’t at their creative best when something isn’t refreshing. The point however is not refreshment, it is radical insight and perspective into their customers lives. Many people are too afraid to re-assess this because they’ve been led to believe that ‘pivoting’ is the worst thing they can possibly do by people who just want to make a dime off of their ignorance by fueling preconceived notions about their need for business innovation. (There is a good reason why people who have the word ‘innovation’ in their job title have much lower job security than people who don’t.)
Here is one reason we focus on service design, service innovation, service aesthetics and use service dominant logic at I Love Mondays and rethinkCAFÉ.
As a standalone company, Apple’s services business could be worth as much as $260B
The application deadline for our June-December incubator program is May 20th — http://rethink.cafe/apply