HUMANISATION – UNDERSTANDING – EMOTIONAL CONNECTION


  • WE PLACE THE PERSON (NOT THE PRODUCT) AT THE CENTRE OF THE INNOVATION PROCESS FROM DESIGN - WE DISCOVER THE USER’S REAL NEED
  • WE SOLVE HIS OR HER REAL PROBLEM - THE PRODUCT CONNECTS EMOTIONALLY WITH THE USER
  • WE FIND OPPORTUNITIES FOR DISRUPTIVE AND HIGH-IMPACT INNOVATION - THE COMPANY LEADS ITS MARKET, IT IS NOT DRAGGED ALONG BY DEMAND

Design humanises innovation as it is perfectly client-oriented and closely linked to the capacity to discover and resolve consumers’ real problems.

Design helps to switch from placing the emphasis on the product or the service to placing the emphasis on the client: the ultimate goal is not to create a good design, but to develop a good product/service that resolves a real problem and for which the consumer is willing to pay.

Clients can reliably express their preferences for incremental improvements in existing products and services, but not their needs of a higher order nor their aspirations.

Innovations that make the difference, the genuinely disruptive and high impact ones, always begin with a profound understanding of clients’ explicit and hidden needs.

The techniques and practices of Design bring clients’ real yet often implied and unconscious needs and desires to the fore.

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From that better interpretation of people’s real needs, an “innovation by design” approach promotes an emotional connection with clients, producing new and unexpected results (disruptive innovation).

It is a question of understanding the needs of the client, not simply responding to the existing demand. Being client-centred allows companies to lead and innovate, not just be led by the market.

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Because design humanises innovation as it is perfectly client-oriented and closely linked to the solution to consumers’ real problems. We traditionally associate design with aesthetics, usability and functionality, but it is a mistake to not go any further: design must be understood as the ability to discover and solve consumers’ real problems. This means that design does not correspond only to a specific unit or department within the company, it is not an exclusive function of designers, nor is it a specific phase of the creation/innovation process, and much less simply the aesthetic phase, the “make it pretty phase”, rather it must be a way of working and a way of thinking. In the corporate world, design helps to switch from placing the emphasis on the product or the service to lacing the emphasis on the client: the ultimate goal is not to create a good design, but to develop a good product/service that resolves a real problem and for which the consumer is willing to pay, and even to pay a little more.

This often means challenging the existing offers and schemes, looking to see if you are really satisfying a client’s need or desire. Beginning at the client’s problem may even mean taking the focus off existing offers and creating something entirely new. No really innovative project began by analysing existing offers; the innovations that make the difference, the genuinely disruptive and high impact ones, always begin with a profound understanding of clients’ explicit and hidden needs. This approach allows Design to be truly client-centred but not necessarily client-driven: it is all about understanding the needs of the client (including those that they themselves are not even aware of), not simply responding to the existing demand. Being client-centred allows companies to lead and innovate, not just be led by the market.

And how is this to be achieved? Through the capacity of Design to increase productivity, product performance and the value of the emotional connection with clients, based on an improved global understanding of the consumer.

The role of consumer knowledge in promoting innovation is well known, but that is not so much the case with design techniques and practices that allow consumers’ real yet often implied and unconscious needs and desires to flow forth.

The consumer does not always know how to transmit what he or she wants; companies that apply user-centred design are better prepared to:

  • Gather information through careful and imaginative observation.
  • Respond with precision, speed and flexibility.
  • Quickly define and reach evolving markets.
  • Connect emotionally with clients.
  • Using the knowledge obtained, inform and influence all the company’s operational units.

Clients can reliably express their preferences for incremental improvements in existing products and services, but not their needs of a higher order nor their aspirations. These, which form the basis of the emotional connections clients make with any offer, may be considered by those same clients to be irrelevant, insignificant or shameful or indeed they may simply not be aware of them.

Design companies that focus on the user use design thinking tools to plan the design of their user research and to gather together the skills that will help them create a profitable connection with their clients.

From that better interpretation of people’s real needs, an “innovation by design” approach promotes an emotional connection with clients that stands out as a new influence and informs other departments, producing new and unexpected results (disruptive innovation).