Design Thinking is a discipline – a mindset. A way of thinking – not a process. Thinking like a designer, Design Thinking applies the designer’s sensibility and methods to match people’s needs with what is technologically feasible and a viable business strategy.
The process follows the designer’s methodology from vision to implementation. Starting with understanding the target audience needs, pain points, and how the audience – the people using the solution – define success.
There is an iterative cycle of discovery, learning, defining, more discover and learning, re-defining, ideating, prototyping and testing with more discovery, learning and refinement of the solutions.
Early in this process there is research methods with research metrics. Methods like observing and interviewing your customers in context of your solution or where your new solution may bring value to them. Metrics here are around context of use – what are they doing now and how do they feel about the current state.
Along the way in this process there is defining methods and defining metrics. Methods like persona development and journey mapping. Metrics include defining the customers goals, pain point and what delights them.
There is also ideating, prototyping and testing methods and metrics. Methods include white-boarding, affinity mapping and wireframing. Metrics may include task completion, learnability and advocacy.
You can only improve things if you know what needs to be improved. You only know if you did improve something, if you measure it.