When you Think Wrong you…

Explore how things might be.
While Thinking Wrong and Design Thinking differ in critical ways, at the core they share some important tenets. Both methodologies are highly user-centric, meaning they focus on the pains and needs of the ultimate beneficiary (i.e. the user or constituent) and attempt to solve with their challenges, hopes, and dreams in mind.

The Be Bold practice takes the user-centered approach of Design Thinking one step further and asks what the client or organization is trying to achieve. It takes the “The Big Why”, the aspirations, and the motivations of the people leading the work into account when framing the challenge and generating solutions.

Invite serendipity.
Thinking Wrong and Design Thinking are both highly generative methodologies, which encourage learning through interaction. While Design Thinking emphasizes research, anthropologic, and ethnographic research, Thinking Wrong asks participants to be open and receptive to new ideas and inspiration from a variety of industries.

Many people get stuck in the research phase of their challenge and it is very difficult to research oneself to an answer. The Get Out practice introduces an element of whimsy and happy accidents into the mix. It encourages Wrong Thinkers to seek out systems, technologies, processes, and ideas that already exist in the real world and apply them to the problem they are trying to solve.

Start with the unexpected.
While many use the process of Design Thinking to try to innovate, solutions that are generated are often incremental rather than radical and disruptive.

The Let Go practice is about getting as far away from the obvious starting place for tackling a challenge as possible. It’s about realizing that when we start from a seemingly random place, we can rely on human ingenuity to find our way to a workable (and more unexpected) outcome.

DIY (draw it yourself).
While rapid-prototyping is at the core of Design Thinking, many organizations rely solely on their design teams for this part of the work.

The Make Stuff practice encourages everyone involved in the process to put pen to paper. When individuals who do not normally see themselves as artists are encouraged to take part in these activities, the whole team benefits. When participants are able to work through possible solutions in a tactile way, it opens their eyes to the possible pitfalls or benefits of what they have created.

Ask the tough questions first.
Although Design Thinking emphasizes learning through testing, it doesn’t offer a process for experimentation.

The Bet Small practice asks Wrong Thinkers to generate lots of bold hypotheses, and to prioritize and test those with the highest option value first, continually asking these four questions:

  1. “Is it wanted?”

  2. “Can we do it?”

  3. “Is it worth it?”

  4. “How might we know?”

These questions help generate a portfolio of solutions to market that address real challenges, are wanted, can be made, and are worth doing.

Find what works fast.
The Think Wrong problem-solving-system balances an emphasis on speed with a more process-driven, disciplined, and rigorous road to impact.

The Move Fast practice provides a rich set of drills that allow you to move quickly, while maintaining the quality of the aspirations that you had at the very beginning.