Strategy & Problem Definition
“What are the biggest pains that cause problems, unmet needs, or wants?”
Painstorming identifies problems that need to be solved. Students think about problems, hazards, frustrations, faults, anomalies, worries, and concerns. They seek to create a better value proposition for existing products. For instance, what’s annoying you about the airline seat in front of you?
Blue Ocean Strategy
“How can we create value through a differentiated product or business model?”
Instead of competing with other companies, the purpose of this strategy is to make the competition irrelevant. The goal is to be alone in the “blue ocean.” Therefore, students focus on new customer markets instead of existing ones.
Ideation & Concept Generation
“Want to ‘go wide’with your concepts and outcomes while keeping your ideas organized?”
Ideation gives you both the drive and the material to provide solutions for your users. Using Edward de Bono’s Concept Fan technique, students approach ideation from a broad view of concepts and approaches that meet the directive, while generating alternatives to grow the list of ideas. They’ll organize their ideas while ensuring they’ve considered the full conceptual design space, looking for remaining gaps.
“How would nature solve this?”
Study the natural world to spark ideas for more efficient and sustainable products and services! Biomimicry leads students to identify and uncover opportunities ripe for innovative solutions. Break down big problems facing our world today into manageable concepts while identifying natural systems, processes, or organisms that could help deal with these same problems.
“Want to be a game-changer with a new product or service?”
Move beyond association to bisociation! Make connections between an ideation topic and a random stimulus to blend these seemingly unrelated concepts into new patterns and products. If a shark photo can lead to the design of special sterile medical instruments and algae-resistant coating on boats, what could your students create? You never know where a photo will lead!
Idea Management & Implementation
Will it Fly Scorecard
“Is your product good enough to make it in the marketplace?”
Regarding business viability, the ‘Will it Fly Scorecard’ provides a nice framework for decision making. It is a systematic method to assess the viability of a proposal. Use it to find out if your proposal is more likely to “fly” or to “crash and burn”!
Six Thinking Hats
“Have you examined your idea from all points of view?”
Often, the best decisions come from changing the way that you think about problems, and examining them from different viewpoints. Leverage the Six Thinking Hats to help you explore your ideas from all angles – one angle (hat) at a time.
Analytical Hierarchy Process (AHP)
“How would you justify your choice?”
AHP is a decision matrix where you define criteria, prioritize criteria, assign weights to the criteria, perform a pairwise comparison, organize data into a chart, rate each design against the criteria, and calculate scores for each design option.
Find these resources and more at engineeringunleashed.com.