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The Design of Business: Why Design Thinking is the Next Competitive Advantage Hardcover – October 13, 2009
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for readers interested in the processes of design there are some interesting bits of detail and discussions on how exactly this is done. - The Financial Times, October 15, 2009
Insightful analysis of a hot management trend, useful for executives of all levels. BusinessWeek, October 26, 2009
a tough-minded elegant survey of why design thinking shouldn’t be considered some soft thing that’s nice for business at the edges but not necessary at the core. MIT Sloan Management Review, Improvisations blog, October 2009
...offers thoughtful and valuable insight for all managers, and concludes with important instructions for individuals who want to become design thinkers. An excellent book. -Booklist, October 15, 2009
About the Author
More About the Author
Check out my books to the left and visit my website (www.rogerlmartin.com) if you want to see more of my writing.
Top Customer Reviews
Martin's thesis centers around a few key concepts including:
The knowledge funnel where ideas and innovations move from exploring mysteries of business and customers, to defining heuristics and finally developing algorithms. While the funnel looks like a traditional innovation process, Martin applies it to aspects of organizational design, behavior and innovation to good effect.
Martin points to the difference between managing businesses for reliability and seeking validity. Reliability concentrates on managing predictable performance, financials, reducing process variance and establishing control. Validity concentrates on learning what is right based more on heuristics and qualitative than quantitative methods. Martin's conjecture is that we need both, but probably need more validity to generate the creativity and innovation needed to survive in a dynamic market.
Design thinking, here Martin borrows Tim Brown of IDEO's definition and makes the connection between design thinking and abductive reasoning which centers around observing data that does not fit with existing models or patterns. Abductive reasoning is in sharp contrast to deductive and inductive thinking that dominant business management.Read more ›
In The Design of Business, Martin offers a view that suggests that design should be the centerpiece or the starting point for much of the work we do in business, and why design is so important. He's not the first to suggest the importance of design, and a number of firms, such as IDEO, have been in the vanguard of the design-led forces. What Martin does well is to describe why design led thinking is important, and give examples of how to do it well.
Martin argues that all knowledge moves through three stages - a mystery, a heuristic and an algorithm. Mysteries are about discovery of new opportunities or research into solving intractable problems. Heuristics are rules of thumb that narrow the size and scope of mysteries and make them more manageable. Algorithms reduce the heuristics into repeatable processes.
This leads to two schools of thought in most businesses: exploration and exploitation, according to Martin. Most businesses are structured to exploit the algorithms, refining the way they do business and becoming highly effective and efficient, while neglecting the exploration of mysteries. Martin calls this the reliability-validity tradeoff. The vast majority of businesses want "reliability" - clearly defined processes that are easily repeatable and produce the same results.Read more ›
In his latest book, Martin explains why "design thinking is the next competitive advantage." In fact, it may well be the most valuable application of integrative thinking, in part because, that successful business innovation is the result of collaboration and proceeds through a "path" or (as Martin describes it) a "knowledge funnel." The model for value creation that he offers in this book requires a balance - "or more accurately a reconciliation - between two prevailing points of view on business today." One is analytical thinking that "harnesses two familiar forms of logic - deductive reasoning and inductive reasoning - to declare truths and certainties about the world." The other is intuitive thinking - "the art of knowing without reasoning. This is the world of originality and invention...Neither analysis nor intuition is enough," however.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Martin is leading a revolution in leadership. Here is the theory behind that revolution. Invaluable.Published 2 months ago by Alan Gordon
Martin's focus on a product maturity funnel (though he doesn't call it that) brings focus to this book and limits its scope. Read morePublished 9 months ago by M. Krohne
Apart from first few chapters, I didn't get what I was expecting. It was an average read recommended for my course. Read morePublished 9 months ago by Behnoud Tahmaseby
This insightful book reminds us that even as we become enamored with Big Data, innovation is a product of design thinking more than analytical thinking. Read morePublished 10 months ago by Marty Neumeier
"Design" is a euphemism for problem solving. Every business encounters problems. This book will assist in their solution in a thoughtful, meaningful way. Read morePublished 10 months ago by Tom Davis
excellent lessons for all levels in the organization - particularly the diferentiation between companies looking backwards (via metrics) and forward (via scaning and thinking) and... Read morePublished 13 months ago by Ray Cornbill