Testing the Idea
In this fast-paced world Design thinking is considered to be the most effective way of addressing problems to find creative and innovative solutions. This innovation cycle consisted of different steps before you reach at a conclusive solution. After you envisioned a problem, you need to translate that into a statement based on some issue, problem, or an untapped opportunity.
Ideation is like mental gymnasium where you wrestle in the generation of a lot of ideas. To ideate is to involve yourself in to design thinking where you cater to widest possibilities and solutions for the proposed problem.
The goal of this phase is to spark a large amount of ideas which can further facilitate the process of forming solutions for problems creatively in an innovative manner. The development of a solution from this rigorous method of idea creation is aimed at searching an improved, more sophisticated, and contended solution.
To save you from traditional and ready-made solutions that can be a hindrance in the way of finding an effective and creative solution. It could also limit the possibility of finding innovative options available.
There are several methods and techniques to be systematically involve in the ideation phase. To make this activity of Idea generation fruitful, people taking part in it should be provided with an open, free, and non-judgmental atmosphere for free flow of ideas among themselves. Unlike a boss heading a meeting, the environment for Ideation phase required to be such sort where every member is equal and has a feeling to be heard.
As this process required a lot of mental effort, so to stay focused on a particular challenge is very crucial. People easily deviate from the topic at hand. Thus, the facilitator should steer the discussions concentrated on selected issue while keeping the decorum of openness.
While Brainstorming Ideas is worthwhile to keep the following points in your mind as found in the recommendation of Institute of Stanford (d. school).
- Deferring Judgments: There is a subtle difference between generating ideas and evaluation of them. Currently, we are at Ideation phase where generating ideas is the main goal. Everybody participating in the process of Ideation should be allowed to present their ideas without the fear of being judged. Judgment is the latter stage.
- Begin with stated problem, Point of view (POV): This process should begin with a focused goal, set of questions about some challenging issue. Inculcating the “How Might We” tool at this point would really help in clarifying the situation. In the absence of clearly communicated problem, all the brainstorming session could become confusing and tiring.
- Quantity > Quality: This advice may sound counter intuitive at first. But it is the key to get better solutions and better ideas.
- No hesitation in providing crazy, unconventional ideas: Free thinking is the only way towards creative solutions. And it is possible where there is an encouraging environment of openness to new ideas.
- Time limit: Putting a specific crunch of time on this whole exercise is crucial. You can’t afford to whirl in this phase for eternity.
- Ideas on Ideas: One thing leads to another. Similarly, Idea or Opinion of one person can help in provoking new ideas in the minds of other people carefully listening to him.
- Paint, draw, and write: Converting your thought on to the paper would make it more real, viable and understandable to others. Making your idea visually available is significant in influencing people’s minds to think further on it. It helps in the generation of more ideas.
- One Idea at time: Brainstorming ideas can be an overwhelming process as well. Design geeks should focus on one idea at a time.
Idea generator Machine:
There are some methodological and scientific ways of generating ideas too. There is an ASEM rule which can instigate ideas in the mind of seeker. However, for comprehensive list you can visit DIY web home.
Addition: Add to some service which is already continuous in some form. Like Cream started providing the service for animal transport at Eid. Someone else could have this idea and benefited from it.
Subtraction: Another way is to delete few services for making an idea/service simple and to give it creative tweak.
Extension: Let’s suppose some schools are providing evening classes for the preparation of exam material for children. And you start providing sport facilities for the development of grooming personalities of students. That would be a selling point.
Merger: The ideas can come from merging two technologies like the availability of music in refrigerators. Pitching ideas like these two big giants can help in raising some capital probably.
David Skok’s view:
Two more things before we lead to the final part. These points are from one of the experts, David Skok who has an extensive experience in an entrepreneurial world.
- Focus on unmet need
- Entertainment side of product
- Disruptive technological ideas
- New business model orientation (In this case, product may be old)
Before we talk about Selection methods for picking out ideas from a large chunk, it is imperative to keep reins of expectations in control may it be emotional, or conceptual involved in ideation phase.
Factors like, level of commitment to an idea, capability of finding funding, uniqueness of product, and probability of generating revenue stream in the beginning should minimize the exploding expectations giving unrealistic hopes to you.
Idea Selection methods:
Hundreds of notions coming to your idea-landscape should be grounded in meeting some opportunity at hand. Brainstormers and Design Thinkers select the range of ideas proposed to them in a meeting of Idea generators. There are methods to select some ideas and leave others. Most popular are:
Dot Voting: This is like a voting system for measuring idea-worthiness. The idea which gets highest number of votes will be selected as a result.
Bingo Selection: In this method, members who have proposed different ideas are supposed to divide ideas further into different prototypes to check their viability. It included Physical prototype, Digital prototype, and Experience prototype.
Four Categories method: This method is a little peculiar in its style to measure effectiveness of an idea on the scale of ambiguity to utmost imagination. Four categories include: The most Rational, The most Delightful, The Darling, and the long shot. This series is ranging from most practical to innovative. It also depends upon the sort of product you have in mind. For instance, eatery items would be appealing and effective to the audience if they pass the test of Delightfulness.
Ideation is probably most exciting stage where you gathered a great many ideas which can be inspiring, effective, sophisticated, and innovative. Before letting an idea to execution-stage it is crucial to filter it through well-researched market trends for measuring its viability and feasibility. This will help in the validation process of idea before it proceeds further.