I’m incredibly optimistic of the power of DT but also always on the lookout for design thinking success stories and examples. As I’ve shared my knowledge of design thinking with others, I’ve frequently been asked how often it delivers demonstrable results and how broadly it can be applied. Below is my collection of design thinking success stories that have helped reinforce my conviction that design thinking can deliver incredibly powerful results and be applicable to everyone.
Consumer Packaged Goods
- Braun – Creating a Better Oral B Toothbrush
- PepsiCo – How Indra Nooyi Tured Design Thinking Into Strategy
- Procter & Gamble – Classic Oil of Olay + DT Case, often Cited by A.G. Lafley
- Design Thinking Success Stories for Educators – Good collection of K-12 DT Cases
- Teaching Kids Design Thinking – Enable Kids to Solve the Worlds Biggest Problems
- Riverpoint Academy – Small school that achieved real results through DT
- Alpha Public Schools – Designing a High School Through Design Thinking
- One School District’s Approach to Innovation For the 21st Century
- Memorial School – Design Thinking in a Medford, MA Elementary School
- Bank of America – “Keep the Change” Program
- ABN AMRO – Design Thinking As Competitive Advantage in the World of Banking
- BBVA / USAA / Citi – Design Thinking Success Stories at 3 Large Banks
- Deutsche Bank – Design Thinking to Achieve Customer Proximity
- Bank of Ireland – 20 Minute Podcast with Bank of Ireland’s Head of DT
- GE Healthcare – Building a better MR scanner experience for children by using paintings and storytelling
- Thomas Jefferson University, University of Michigan, University of Minnesota, University of Montreal – Design Thinking Success Stories at University Hospitals
- UCSF & IDEO – Applying Design Thinking to Schizophrenia Care
- Mayo Clinic – Design Thinking at Mayo Clinic’s Center for Innovation
- Stanford Healthcare – Design Thinking to Improve Patient Experience
- Voice of San Diego & OrbitaLAB – 2 news media outlets that apply DT principles
- Hearken – How Design Thinking is Being Applied to Journalism
- Golden Gate Regional Center – Design thinking to provide better, faster service to support people with developmental disabilities
- Design Thinking in Museums – Stories from DT practitioners specializing in museums
- Municipality of Holstebro, Denmark – Designing “The Good Kitchen”
- Mobisol, Reinventing Solar Energy Supply for Rural Africa
- IDEO & Cambodia – Using DT principles to bring sanitation systems to Cambodia
- Nike – Design Thinking Infuses Everything Nike Does (It All Starts with the CEO)
- Nordstrom – Building a Better Experience Shopping for Sunglasses
- Airbnb – Using DT to Avoid Bankruptcy & Develop a Winning Business Model
- Apple – Think Different about Innovation through Design Thinking
- IBM – I Love That IBM Has An Entire Section of its Website Dedicated to DT!
- Google – How To Brainstorm Like a Googler
- Intuit – Measuring & Communicating the Impact of a Design Thinking Program
- Uber – Creating the Future of Food Delivery through Design Thinking
- SAP – Speeding Up Development & Tech Solutions Designed to Delight Customers
- Airports (in general) – DT to Make Airport Waiting Time More Pleasant
- Makassar, Indonesia – Using DT to Improve Traffic Congestion in a City
- Designing Your Life Through Design Thinking – My Personal Story
- NY Times – Design Thinking for a Better You
- Stanford professor’s Take on How DT Can Help You Lose Weight, Stop Worrying, & Change Your Life
- Designing Your Life – Insight into the Most Popular Class at Stanford!
If you’re at the beach and would rather read an actual book full of design thinking case studies, I’d recommend ‘Solving Problems with Design Thinking: Ten Stories of What Works’ by Jeanne Lietdka.
In summary, there are plenty of available and powerful design thinking success stories, that will hopefully increase your conviction in the strength of DT. I’m always on the lookout for new examples and will continue to add to this list. Please don’t hesitate to share any great examples that I’m missing and continue to check back in as this list grows in size!
Interested in expanding your design thinking mindset and skills? Click here for my collection of design thinking tools and resources!