Steve Jobs, one of the most innovative businessmen and designers of our century, once famously said that "Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works."
Design thinking, essentially, is a methodology used to creatively solve problems. It is a human-centric approach to tackling complex problems. At Eventosaur, we have always kept "Design Thinking" at the forefront of our innovation and growth. Design workshops such as, the Design Sprint at Google and Design4India at Nasscom Startup Warehouse, have surely helped stand us in good stead.
Recently, TIE Bangalore hosted one such event at BHIVE Workspace in HSR Layout, Bangalore called Design Startup Showcase. The event was about the importance of Design Thinking in the startup world. It was also an opportunity for startups to pitch their design in front of guests and a live audience.
Eventosaur was one among the 5 startups shortlisted to pitch their design. The other startups were - Levo, Helpify, Troppo, Awesummly. The guests for this event included - Alisha Raghavan, Chandrashekar Seivur from Pensaar, Suvodeep Das from SAP Labs, Akash Kuttappa from Under 25 club, and Rajlakshmi D Borthakur from Terrablue XT.
Design thinking, of late, has evolved itself into a methodology applied not only by designers but also by everyday professionals as a way to solve problems. The design experts on the panel spoke comprehensively about their approach and the important characteristics of a design professional.
Here are a few takeaways from their presentation -
Empathy: Suvodeep Das who is the principal designer at SAP labs, spoke about the importance of having a designer at the beginning of product development and not at the end. He also stressed on the key skill for a designer to have - empathy. Empathy is rooted in design as it helps you think, feel, and experience from a user’s perspective to arrive at a solution for the problem. He also attributed the tremendous success of Whatsapp to its simplistic design and a very user-friendly onboarding process. Thinking back, we’ll notice that, we did not need an email ID or a login password to create an account on Whatsapp - our phone number and name would do the trick. In our effort to have a great UI, we often forget that UX is key to grab a user’s attention.
Design Strategy: The design team from Pensaar comprised of Alisha Raghavan and Chandrashekar Seivur. They spoke about their core philosophies behind Design Thinking - Insight, Dream, and Disrupt. Design thinking is about gathering insight, willingness to dream and think outside-the-box for solutions, and disrupt by rapid iterations. They explained this beautifully by giving an example of an auto-manufacturer, for whom the Pensaar team was the consultant. This company had an issue in their logistics department which was hampering their sales. Although a normal truck could drive 72 hours at a stretch, a driver could only drive for 8 hours. Also, the driver, because of his long hours on the road, would be away from his family a lot. The truck-downtime was also creating a loss in revenue for this company. With this insight, they experimented with having different drivers for the same truck. The drivers for the truck would be changed at strategic stops. This round-robin scheduling of drivers made sure that the truck was constantly on the move and ensured that the goods reached on time. This naturally improved the sales numbers of the company. This seemingly simple creative solution was arrived at after hours of brainstorming with the client and the customer alike.
The human angle: Akash Kuttappa from the Under 25 club, spoke about application of human emotions in our design. When we are deep into designing a product, we might tend to forget that we are designing the products for humans, after all. As human beings, we are a bundle of different emotions. When we go online, we don't lock our emotions up in bag - we continue to be the same human with all our emotions intact. It is important for the designer to understand a human’s emotion and design a solution for them.
The event also comprised of the aforementioned startups pitch their design to the guests in front of a live audience. Each of the startups returned with valuable feedback from the jury on their product. It was a very interactive session, with the audience members participating in Q & A with each of the startups.
The event was concluded by the founder of Terrablue XT, Rajlakshmi Borthakur, with her talk about her journey in building their product, TJay. It is a wearable device that helps in the management of epilepsy. She spoke about the importance of having a clear purpose and vision for your product. While purpose tells you why you are building the product, vision tells you where you need to be in the future, she said.
All in all, it was a very informative session. We are glad to have received an opportunity to be part of this event. Nikhil, our co-founder, did a fantastic job of explaining the evolution of design in Eventosaur. We ensured that nobody would miss the design event by recording the whole event live on our Facebook page. Your comments and suggestions on the video would be greatly appreciated.