Use design thinking to develop impactful and scalable social innovations
Love the Problem, Not the Solution
One important aspect of developing powerful solutions to solve difficult problems is the depth of understanding of the problem from the beneficiaries’ perspective and other important stakeholders such as potential customers and partners. If we don't have a deep understanding of the underlying needs of the stakeholders and beneficiaries connected to the problem, we might still develop great ideas, but they won't solve the problems. It is crucial to develop and refine skills that help us understand and address the needs and rapid changes in our beneficiaries' and customers’ environments and behaviors. If you want to succeed, invest time to get to know your customers and beneficiaries and their realities and make sure you are delivering them real value.
What Is Design Thinking?
Design thinking is a process for creative problem solving. It is a non-linear, iterative way of working that teams use to understand beneficiaries and customers, challenge assumptions, redefine problems, and create innovative solutions to prototype and test.
Here are some resources we recommend to equip and strengthen your teams' design thinking skills.
- What Is Design Thinking - Introduction to the different phases of design thinking
- Human-centered Design vs Design Thinking - Article on how they are different and how to use them together to create lasting change
- Introduction to Human-centered Design - Acumen Academy's free course
- Prototyping - Acumen Academy's free course
- IDEO's Design Kit - Resource platform with mindset, methods, and case studies applying human-centered design
How Reach for Change Integrates Design Thinking in the Toolkits Platform
In our support to social entrepreneurs as well as in our toolkits, Reach for Change encourages a learning mindset approach anchored in design thinking processes. We believe it is important to integrate design thinking as a mindset and way of working throughout the different phases of developing and scaling a social innovation. It enables a culture of reflection, learning, and innovation within the organization. Studies show that teams that consistently dedicate time to reflection and evaluation increase their effectiveness by 25%.
Learning Loops Integrated in Action Points
A learning loop system is incorporated in the Action Points of each milestone in the Toolkits platform. The learning loop consists of the design, test, and improve phases. Each Action Point is linked to one of the three phases.
Take the test!
Find out how close you are to creating impact at scale by taking this test.Read more »
Progress in 4 development areas!
Throughout your journey towards creating impact at scale, Reach for Change supports you in 4 development areas, which we believe are fundamental to building a sustainable social enterprise!
Use design thinking to improve your solution
In our support to social entrepreneurs as well as in our toolkits, Reach for Change encourages to adopt a learning mindset, anchored in design thinking theories.Read more »
We support you where you are!
The journey towards creating impact at scale can be a long one. No matter where you find yourself, Reach for Change aims to provide you adequate support. Find out more about the different development stages.Read more »