Design of Business: Why Design Thinking is the Next Competitive Advantage

Overview


Most companies today have innovation envy. They yearn to come up with a game—changing innovation like Apple's iPod, or create an entirely new category like Facebook. Many make genuine efforts to be innovative—they spend on R&D, bring in creative designers, hire innovation consultants. But they get disappointing results.

Why? In The Design of Business, Roger Martin offers a compelling and provocative answer: we rely far too exclusively on analytical thinking, which merely ...

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Design of Business: Why Design Thinking is the Next Competitive Advantage

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Overview


Most companies today have innovation envy. They yearn to come up with a game—changing innovation like Apple's iPod, or create an entirely new category like Facebook. Many make genuine efforts to be innovative—they spend on R&D, bring in creative designers, hire innovation consultants. But they get disappointing results.

Why? In The Design of Business, Roger Martin offers a compelling and provocative answer: we rely far too exclusively on analytical thinking, which merely refines current knowledge, producing small improvements to the status quo.

To innovate and win, companies need design thinking. This form of thinking is rooted in how knowledge advances from one stage to another—from mystery (something we can't explain) to heuristic (a rule of thumb that guides us toward solution) to algorithm (a predictable formula for producing an answer) to code (when the formula becomes so predictable it can be fully automated). As knowledge advances across the stages, productivity grows and costs drop-creating massive value for companies.

Martin shows how leading companies such as Procter & Gamble, Cirque du Soleil, RIM, and others use design thinking to push knowledge through the stages in ways that produce breakthrough innovations and competitive advantage.

Filled with deep insights and fresh perspectives, The Design of Business reveals the true foundation of successful, profitable innovation.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

… among the most fundamental and comprehensive books ever written about the subject of business design and design thinking. — Business Design Association, November 2nd, 2009

…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

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781422177808
  • Publisher: Harvard Business Review Press
  • Publication date: 10/6/2009
  • Pages: 256
  • Sales rank: 247,555
  • Product dimensions: 6.50 (w) x 8.62 (h) x 0.81 (d)

Meet the Author


Roger Martin is dean of the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto and a professor of strategic management at the school. He authored The Responsibility Virus, The Opposable Mind, and many articles in leading business publications including Harvard Business Review, BusinessWeek, Fast Company, and Barron's.
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