Ideation, Design Thinking, & Optimizing the Process

Do you know what are the phases of successful ideation? Initially, this term may seem new to many companies, especially those that are not used to investing in innovation, therefore, it is common to have different questions regarding the theme.

Ideation is one of the most important steps in process management and its important to highlight what are the steps of this procedure, and provide tips that will help you to improve the process.

What is Design Thinking?

To explain what ideation means, first we need to explain what Design Thinking is about. Design Thinking is an approach that aims to help in the development of projects. It has three distinct stages: Inspiration, Ideation, and Implementation. The reference is the vision and thinking point of the designers.

Another fundamental aspect of Design Thinking is the importance given to human resources in solving problems. Taken actions must be multidisciplinary, collaborative and the processes must be designed in groups.

What is Ideation?

Ideation is the second stage in the Design Thinking process in which brainstorming about the projects cultivated during the Inspiration stage takes place, and proposals are developed to solve a certain problem.

By this time, it should already be known what the focus and necessities are, therefore, ideation happens so the team can collect ideas that might solve these queries and help to develop an efficient solution for the market. A good result here is when a solution is reached through different views on the initial issue.

What are the Stages of Ideation?

Ideation is a comprehensive process that involves several aspects. Among them are the Survey, Alignment, and Organization of Ideas. We will cover these aspects below. Check it out!


The brainstorming phase is a group dynamics technique. It is focused on the development and exploration of the creative potential of each person on the team through collaboration. All of their skills should be harmoniously applied in hopes to solve the predetermined goals.


Here, ideas must be organized into three categories: certainties, doubts, and assumptions. “Certainties” must contain what is true about the project and “Doubts” must assemble what we don’t know yet but would like to know. In “Assumptions”, is necessary to list the information we believe is true, but we are not certain about it. Data must be listed so as to enable the debate between members of the team.


All ideas generated must be organized so that every group can get to know them. This way, it will be easier to choose the best suggestions, describe them in more detail, and put them into practice in the company. The more details gathered in a formatted way, the better, especially in a way that ideas can be compared by apples-to-apples.

How to Optimize the Process?

The secret for successful ideation is the appreciation of all the team members who participate meaning that there are no bad ideas. With that in mind, everyone will feel comfortable in contributing in the creative process.

For this reason, it is essential to capture all feedback and it’s crucial to document it somewhere so as not to lose it. The most practical way to do this is by registering them digitally somewhere where other stakeholders can access it, facilitating visualization and the collaboration of everyone on the team.

It is also important to look for the amount of feedback generated at first. The more suggestions the better, as it will be possible to acknowledge different points of view and then later, companies can select the best ideas.

It is worth mentioning that in large companies, the process can be more difficult due to a larger number of ideas and information populating from different areas and regions. That is why it is very important to have your own portfolio and project management system.

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