Everyone knows that the most important person in a business’ path to success is the customer. If potential customers enjoy the process of working with a company, as well as the product they create, they might become paying – and maybe even regular – customers. Thus, one of the best ways to structure and grow a business is using human-centered design. Human-centered design, which has taken off in today’s internet age, is essentially the process of designing products and processes around the needs and wants of potential customers. To learn more about this design process, check out four of its basic principles below.
The basic principle behind human-centered design is simple. By understanding what potential customers might want, need, or aspire to, human-centered designers can create remarkable new solutions for them. The process of human-centered design usually focuses on the doing – that is, creating potential products or solutions, then evaluating the results and, eventually, refining the product. Many consider the foundation of human-centered design as a type of trial and error process.
The customer is at the center of the human-centered design process (hence, the name.) Products of human-centered design are not only easy to use, but they are also pleasant and enjoyable to use. Because of their inherent ease and enjoyability, they tend to drive their own engagement and sustain their own growth. Some great examples of companies using human-centered design that have succeeded are Airbnb, Warby Parker, and Squarespace.
When designing human-centered products, the best designers collaborate with a team. This is important because it brings a range of backgrounds and frames-of-reference to a process, and in turn takes into account the potential needs and wants of more people when creating a product or solution. George Kemble, a design expert at Stanford, calls this an “extroverted design process.”
In today’s digital age, many people think of human-centered design as a process or tactic for creating technological solutions – like mobile apps or websites. However, human-centered design can be used in a huge variety of businesses or professional situations; from the day-to-day functions of a non-profit organization to the production, manufacturing and marketing of a food or drink product from a large corporation.