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Design Thinking: The Backwards Approach

Since joining the Breakout Games and Orange Perspective teams I’ve been learning a lot about entrepreneurship and the start-up culture of our workplace. A new season is upon us as we dive into the process of developing, designing and launching a new concept and adding to our family of brands at Orange Consulting; the energy around the Warehouse HQ is palpable. This type of creative, fast-paced, think-tank development feels heroic, as each decision is made to create an extraordinary experience for our target: our guests.

In business there exists the concept of Design Thinking, which is to start with the ideal outcomes that your customers want and work backward toward the best solution. Rather than jumping head first into creating a company that sounds cool or launching a concept that seems fun or even building what is quickest and easiest, Design Thinking challenges us to place all the ideas on the table, sort them through and discuss all the options and implications first. Rather than moving forward and fixing problems as you go, this approach is backward in that we attempt to anticipate problems and address them before they arise.

Earlier this fall, our team of directors at Breakout Games team gathered around a conference table with the sole purpose of hashing out any and all opportunities to do good by our future guests and by our future employees with the launch of this new concept. Question after question was brought up and talked through from all different angles of our business. Operations, Technology, Sales, Marketing, and Hospitality all had a voice. What is the overall aesthetic like in the lobby? How do we design the check-in process so that it is easily understood by the guest upon arrival? Why use a traditional sink height when our employees will need to lift out of it regularly? Who leads this type of high-energy team? How do we create an environment that is both beautiful and functional, for the guest and the employee?

It is ultimately about empathy – understanding where the customer, or employee, is coming from, meeting them there and guiding them through your process. And while this is an integral approach to how we create and design a new business concept and brand, Design Thinking in our company shouldn’t stop there. There is power in knowing why you are doing what you are doing, rather than just going about your work and life doing what’s easiest, assumed, or has been done before. It is not just applicable when starting fresh and creating something brand new — we are creating moments, memories and outcomes every single day in our workplaces.

Design Thinking provides a solution-based approach to solving problems.1 Whether we’re in a leadership position or in a customer-facing role, we should always be evaluating why we’re doing what we’re doing. With the anticipated solution in mind and empathy driving us to get there, Design Thinking creates a way for our teams and for our customers to feel like the heroes every single time.




1 What is Design Thinking and Why Is It So Popular? by Rikke Dam and Teo Siang


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