Three take-aways, process map and reflection (3 pages)
3 KEY LEARNINGS
The Empathy Map (EM) investigates perception,
thoughts and action in a very human way.
It does not matter with whom I discuss an EM, is it
a CFO, a HR manager or the barista in the
neighbor café - everybody understands what I am
A global tool and very easy to align with.
Everybody can align with and
understand the Empathy Map.
First of all, it is good to set goals. Generating 50
ideas can be quite a challenge. I truly enjoyed it
and looked in the most diverse corners of my
brain to come up with new ideas.
The trick for me was to focus on the crazy
stuff first, such as digging a tunnel from Sydney
to Amsterdam. From there I moved on via
geography, transport systems, personal
relationships, criminal actions, environmental
deeds, luck, rock stardom to the most obvious
From now on I will start with trying to pin down the
most unlikely ideas first instead of the obvious - a
great brain stimulator!
Loved the 50+ idea
Leave your ego at home. Listen, watch and ask
with an open 'unlearned' mind and integrate what
you learned during testing phase into the product.
A great designer does exactly that, putting the
needs and requirements of the endusers into
the spotlight, not his/her own idea.
The true creative part lies in how those needs and
requirements are integrated into the product.
Solutions that seemed great in my
view, were not perceived as such by
the interviewees during testing phase.
How to do
part of the
Design thinking skills and mindsets to be applied.
A problem I really care about in
my own environment is my
daily practice of Bikram yoga.
For your information, Bikram
Yoga is synthesized from
traditional 1000+-year-old Hatha
Yoga techniques. All Bikram Yoga
classes run for 90 minutes and
consist of 26 postures and 2
breathing exercises. Bikram Yoga
is practiced in a hot room heated
to 105°F / 40.6°C. We are
practicing in a mild sauna-like
environment and the effect on my
mind and body is amazing.
Having that said though, what's
the effect on the environment?
As you might imagine, I have
started to feel bad about my
carbon footprint. Next to
cranking up the heat in the room,
we obviously sweat a lot, using
lots of towels, gear etc. Every
week my sweaty towel and gear
use adds up to about two
machine washes. I refuse to use
a dryer, but many just throw their
gear in to the dryer and let it run,
run, run - no care for reduced
energy consumption, carbon
footprint or sustainability. I love
my yoga, I do it everyday. I am as
fit as a lion, yoga has become
part of my life, it is like brushing
my teeth everyday. I would never
give it up, so my quest is: How
can I make Bikram yoga more
01 Empathize: understanding the needs of those
you are designing for.
In this case I am primarily thinking of the
environment, creating more awareness for the
environment within this niche discipline. This is my
main concern. In addition, I want to target the pain
points that bikram yogis have, caused by the 'hot
02 Define: framing problems as
opportunities for creative solutions.
With the problem statement I can narrow
down the initial challenge to a more
actionable problem based on the data
gathered in the interview.
I will probably need several problem
statements, because there are several
stakeholders, such as a yoga
practitioner, a yoga teacher and a yoga
03 Ideate: generating a range of possible solutions.
As already mentioned in the three key learnings, I
loved the challenge to design at least 50 ideas.
Generating such an amount of ideas requires you to
search in more unrelated areas, sectors, processes
and rituals and come with ideas that you would have
never come up with in the first line.
In my case I would be looking into the
green tech, sports, wellness industries
04 Prototype: communicating the core elements
of solutions to others.
The chosen idea(s) will be converted into simple
prototypes, which then will be subject to discussions
and user interviews. I would interview yoga
practitioner, a yoga teacher and a yoga school
owner, but also sustainability experts and people
from the wellness industries, who for example deal
with saunas and other heated rooms.
05 Test: learning what
works and doesn’t work to
This part is key to make the
idea a success. If the user
does not accept the idea/
concept, it has no value for
The improved concept needs
to be tested and refined
several times until a certain
level of quality and
consistency is reached.