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Thursday, April 12, 2018


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Our expert Lieke Gerris joined the Design Thinking Summit in Amsterdam today to present the value of research data in funded projects. Reactions were positive: many attendees reported feeling inspired. "I like how all the attending companies are very enthousiastic about our design thinking approach," Lieke says. She also shares some of the learnings of other speakers.

How to enrich your design thinking innovation process?

During her presentation, Lieke Gerris touched upon one of PNO’s pride of place projects, UTILE. Using the project, she proved that during the Develop-stage in design thinking, it is possible to use European research data to prevent reinventing the wheel. Proper intelligence will help inform decisions. “If you want to do it right, you need the right mindset, the right team, and you need to be willing to invest the time needed,” Lieke says.

Learnings from the summit

What were interesting takeaways from the Design Thinking Summit? A few learnings Lieke gathered from other speakers during the day:

  • Scott Wisler, Director Systems Integration / Systems Integration at Dresser-Rand (Siemens): “If you are plowing in a concrete parking lot, the seeds you will sow there will never grow.” Cooperation is key. You need to talk and cooperate with the right people, both inside and outside of your organisation. But how do you find them? How do you approach them? It is important to want to know people, both customers and collaborative partners. Innovation requires an almost anthropological mindset, in order to find and maintain your network.
  • Michal Dunaj, Director Strategic Portfolio & EU Operations, Telekom Innovation Laboratories, claimed jokingly that if you really want to disruptively innovate, you shouldn’t do design thinking or use consultants, but take up a hobby as a magician, amateur actor or dancer.
  • Julija Voitiekute, Innovation Portfolio Manager at Maersk, believed that an innovation process could be shaped by having employees draw an organisational structure; and that in general, we need to write less and draw more.

About PNO’s design thinking approach

The method PNO Consultants has developed, enhances the traditional 4D method: Discover, Define, Develop, Deliver. PNO uses intelligence to chart short and long term innovation trends (Discover) and to integrate this in the analysis of customer and market needs (Define), to see how new external stakeholders can be involved in technological development (Develop) and ensure the necessary funding to realise the innovation (Deliver). By connecting these steps to intelligence based on unexplored resources, the impact of design thinking sometimes even increases exponentially.

About the Design Thinking Summit

The Design Thinking Summit, which is sponsored by PNO Consultants among others, is a leading event in the innovation world.

Want to know more? Feel free to contact Lieke Gerris or one of our other innovation experts.

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