Course Description

Design Thinking Foundations March 2020 Part-time

Cape Town

Lay the foundations for the development of your creative confidence and innovation capability. This course, which is run part-time, will provide you with an in-depth understanding of what is needed to drive innovation and *customer-centricity in your organisation.

We will provide a balanced mix of theory and practice for participants to enjoy an engaging and intense learning experience that will improve your ability to function on the edge of your comfort zone (where innovative opportunities can be found).

Taking professional development to the next level:

Re-Energise: This program will enable you to practically apply tools over the 4 weeks in the workplace, thereby helping you embed the knowledge and invigorate your team.

Implementation Action Plan: Ultimately, you will develop a personal development action plan that links back to exciting new work opportunities.

You will identify obstacles that prevent creative problem-solving and innovation collaboration in order to amplify new activities that deliver value to your customers. This helps you apply your learnings during and beyond the training.

During the Design Thinking Foundations we will work on a relevant case that will enhance learning and capability to use the design thinking framework

*Customer-centric: Customer-centric, is an approach to doing business that focuses on creating a positive experience for the customer by maximizing service and/or product offerings and building relationships – Investopedia


During the 4-week part-time Design Thinking Foundations program, we will blend theory with practice. We will cover the main ‘Schools of Thought’ within Design Thinking and more importantly how to practically apply the framework in your everyday work life. We will provide some pre-work and readings that will help reinforce the theory while thinking about its practical application.


The major part of the Design Thinking, however, will be spent on hands-on work on the case using the different tools. It will involve ‘learning by doing’ and applying the design thinking framework in the workplace. This approach also embraces the customers Job-to-be-done, while empathising with the customer’s needs and emotions.


DesignThinkers provide tools that help to support the Design Thinking approach. These tools support the practitioner in applying the learnings and are provided electronically.

Stakeholder Mapping provides you with an overview of the ‘eco-system’ that you are exploring. Stakeholders are people, teams or organisations that directly or indirectly exchange ‘value’. The exchange of value is used as the basis to explore the underlying services provided by the stakeholders.

Value Network Mapping provides insight in the value (benefits) that is being exchanged between stakeholders. Using this tool, you will get a more detailed insight into the services being provided by the stakeholders.

Personas are used as the basis for Customer Journey Mapping. Finding out about the objectives, behaviour, attitudes of people is very important for developing improvements or innovations of the services provided.

Customer Journey Mapping allows us to further step into the customer shoes. It shows us the customer’s perceptions and the larger context in which we play a part at the different stages of their journeys. It lets us be emerged in their world, their reality. Get a deeper insight into customer needs, objectives, experience and desired outcomes. It will answer questions like: What are people really trying to achieve? How are they trying to achieve this? What do they use and in what order? Why do they make a choice? What are they experiencing, feeling, while trying to reach the desired outcome?

A customer journey map is built up layer by layer. We start ‘above water’, with the customer and slowly dive deeper and deeper into the organisational structures and context. The tool can be used with customers or management, employees and other stakeholder.

This qualitative design research tool will provide you with customer insights to improve the customer’s experience. The toolkit will be handed out after the training so you can start applying the tool immediately in your context.

Service Scenarios are used to visualise how a (newly designed) service is being experienced from a customer point of view. Simple visualisation techniques are being introduced.

Prototyping is done to be able to test a service concept in a ‘low tech’ environment with relevant stakeholders. Prototyping can be done by building artefacts from cardboard or paper or by using Lego. Also, role play is a powerful way of prototyping.

All tools will be handed out after the session and are free of use.

What COMPETENCIES will you work on?

You will work on the five core capabilities needed to collaborate and generate innovative outcomes for your customers/users:

  1. Navigating ambiguity
  2. Sensemaking
  3. Designing artefacts rapidly
  4. Iteration
  5. Creative confidence

What OUTCOMES can you expect?

  • Enhance your knowledge and understanding of the how to apply the Design Thinking framework in the work place and in your personal life.
  • Develop sensemaking capability: understanding complexity and suspending biases to discover new opportunities that add value to organisational value-chain.
  • Embed the principles and mindsets: Increased ability to perform creative problem-solving by designing innovative solutions that matter.
  • Improve your ability to communicate and collaborate: Identify ways to radically collaborate with key actors to bring about positive change.
  • Re-energise your work: This program will help you re-energise the way you work and will invigorate how you are perceived at the workplace.


Robert Bloom, highly experienced trainer and senior facilitator with a multi-disciplinary background that spans corporate, consulting, not-for-profit and government. Robert has a Masters in Business Administration at the Executive Level from UCT Graduate School of Business (the only MBA in the global Top 50 in Africa). He has been facilitating workshops and training for DesignThinkers in Europe, Africa, Asia and the Middle East. Robert is passionate about human-centred design and the art and science of innovation.


The 4-day part time program will be rolled-out every Thursday from 7:30am to 12pm leaving you with time to get back to the office and check-in on important work to be done.

A comprehensive learning journey: You will be encouraged to do pre-work and at least 2 hours of work outside of class each week, practically applying the tools and doing further research.


About this Event

65 Wolfe street, Wynberg, Cape Town

Thursday 5, 12, 19 & 26 March 2020
Language: English
Maximum participants: 10



Prices are intended excluding VAT.

The ticket includes daily morning coffee and snacks.

A certificate from DesignThinkers Academy is awarded to participants who successfully complete the course.

Discounts available for teams signing up, Non-Profits and Government Organisations.

Contact southafrica[@]

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