What can we do Better?

It's a common and difficult question that we get asked by many different people (including ourselves).  A lot of the time, I feel myself answering, “well, if I knew then obviously I would be doing it,” but that is a limiting thought to say the least.  As innovators, we hope to open our minds beyond our single immediate reactions or thoughts.  Sometimes, this is a similarly difficult-seeming task.  My college science classes taught me a lot, but not always about thinking outside the box.  I still find myself having the fear of giving a “bad” idea because it can be hard to reach outside of the realm that I know. 

So here is one of my favorite insights about design thinking that has helped me battle this fear:  Finding an answer doesn’t have to be about hoping for that “aha” moment while in deep thought, it can come from simply talking with the people around you. We all have things that make us unique (whether we are proud of them or not), and it is these very things that design thinking seeks to find.  Design thinking is about appreciating those special things and making them shine. So next time you are struggling to think outside the box, it may be just as simple as turning to the person next to you and observing them for a minute. What do they do differently?  What do you appreciate about them?

This week our new friends (Paul and Anne) from the West coast visited the Hub.  Their app, called “Better”, provides a personal health assistant by text and phone.  Much of my week involved both learning about Better and helping introduce Paul and Anne to people all over Sibley.  Specifically we are piloting their app with the Orthopedics team, and most of our time focused on learning about what patients go through from the decision to have surgery through their returning home. There will surely be more to come from Better, so keep your eyes peeled for their return!  Maybe in the meantime you might find yourself thinking, what can Better do for you?

Here is the link to their website in case you are curious: http://better-pha.squarespace.com/