Your Ideas: Scalable Ideas for Fostering Grit + Resilience
For Design Lab 2014, Dr. Natalie Nixon, Director of the Strategic Design MBA (SDMBA) program at Philadelphia University, facilitated a 2-hour lab for participants on grit and resilience framed as a design challenge for “How might we cultivate grit?” She was assisted by Philadelphia University graduate students Juan Carlos Velasquez (SDMBA, 2015) and Dana Utembayeva (MS Industrial Design 2014). Dr. Nixon began with an overview on design thinking, which is a problem solving process that utilizes the skills designers bring to the fore (empathy, ideation, prototyping and story) and integrates those methods into the design of more innovative services, experiences and processes. The design thinking process allows for a series of iterative divergent and convergent thinking processes.
Design Lab participants’ first exercise was in divergent thinking, a “Quietstorm” exercise, which is a group brainstorm in silence. Prompts were the words “grit” and “resilience.” Quiet brainstorming prevents louder team members from dominating a session; teams end up with more robust ideas emerging from the group as they “riff” off of each other’s ideas. Participants were then challenged to sort and sift the ideas they had collectively developed and sort into patterns. They then prioritized their thinking using a Love/Like/Develop framework. Participants then mapped their ideas on a Creative Matrix.