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Lesson 9 from: Become a Design Thinking Facilitator

Lee-Sean Huang

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Lesson Info

9. Ideation

Next Lesson: Prototyping

Lesson Info


When you get to ideation you also want to set the mood, you want to set the tone, and you want to think about this as like improv, and yes, and thinking. So, one way to illustrate this is through a quick demonstration and role play about planning the ultimate party. So, we did this in the other class. I brought some students up here and in the first demonstration we had no but thinking and doing. And so, somebody would post some ideas and then we would debate the ideas because we wanted to have the most awesome party ever and if it wasn't awesome enough, I was gonna be angry. You can see how that doesn't really work for creativity. You're being too prickly when you should be pliant. You should be yes, and, and building upon each other. And so this is straight up borrowed from improv and the point here is to go for quantity versus quality, right? You're bad ideas will help you get to the good ideas and if you take away this filter of quality and you just tell people, come up with as man...

y ideas as possible. Or, come up with as many bad ideas as possible. You really open things up. So, when we were working with West Point over the summer, we showed this activity as a demo and one of the ideas that came up was like yes, and we're gonna have this ultimate party, and we're gonna have a cake, and inside the cake is gonna be a guy dressed up as a bear, and the person in the bear costume is going to jump out of the cake and that's gonna be a surprise and delight for all the people at the party. So, that spun all sorts of other ideas around like confetti, and decorations, and things like that. And then, you know, we forgot about it 'cause it was just a demo and what we ended up doing with our facilitation later on in the week. The cadets had worked really hard on their design challenges and then at the final sort of wrap party for the week, we didn't have time to bake a giant human size cake and then jump out of it dressed as bears. But, we tweaked the idea so we brought them a regular sized cake but we dressed up my business partner, David Colby Reed, as a bear. Like, in a bear onesie and he brought out the cake. And so, it was a reference to this exercise from earlier in the week. It also demonstrates that you can have these wild and wacky ideas but you can always scale them down into something that you can turn around in a couple hours.

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Ratings and Reviews

Darwin Antipolo

The course fits my need in supplementing my DT facilitation activities. It was well designed, paced properly and full of useful tips. Thank you!

Carlos Encalada

This follow-up to Lee-Sean's Design Thinking for Business Innovation helped me to strategize and envision how I would bring these principles into my agency context. I look forward to using his guidance during this workshop in a way that is appropriate to a community healthcare setting.


There is a lot of common facilitator knowledge and skills shared in this course. The course was useful for me and helped me connecting the dots.

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