How are you using design thinking?

There’s nothing we love more at the d.school than hearing how alums are sharing and spreading this way of working.

Joaquin Tirado Escobosa, a member of our 2009 bootcamp class, is bringing design thinking to the company he works for in Mexico. Sigma Alimentos is Mexico’s largest maker of processed meat and dairy products, and Joaquin is charged with sussing out innovation possibilities.

He started by running the wallet exercise with 10 colleagues from the processed meat division. The session generated so much excitement that he was asked to do a two-hour session with a multidisciplinary team including marketing, operations, purchasing, and human resources people.

“I was thinking: How am I going to do this with so many people in such a short time?” Joaquin said, before quickly coming up with the idea to video tape interviews with the kinds of customers Sigma Alimentos wants to develop new cheese products for: like his sister, a working mom.

“At first, people thought I was completely crazy for asking them to prototype something in 8 minutes, but it was great because they came up with some great ideas and really deep insights.”

One challenge has been convincing senior colleagues that spending time to develop empathy for customers would be worthwhile. “They feel like, ‘Come on, we already do marketing research,’” Joaquin says. One of the responses he’s found that resonates with his colleagues is anecdotes about how design thinking is working for bigger companies like Procter and Gamble or Bank of America.

What challenges are you finding as you try to bring this way of working into your organization? What’s been working for you? Send your stories to theredphone@dschool-old.stanford.edu.

One Response

  1. Carlos L Iriarte
    Carlos L Iriarte May 5, 2010 at 7:17 pm |

    Congratulations Joaquin Escobosa certainly we are proud of the achievements in your professional career.
    Cap. Carlos Iriarte & Family

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