Randy Krum    Designer | Author | Instructor | Speaker

Randy Krum

Designer | Author | Instructor | Speaker


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Design Thinking vs. Visual Thinking

Design Thinking vs. Visual Thinking

The team at XPLANE has posted their own explanation of Design Thinking vs. Visual Thinking on their blog along with this great visual infographic explanation.

At XPLANE we pride ourselves on bringing clarity to complexity. We usually do this for clients, but sometimes the need strikes closer to home. This happened recently at a social event when I heard the terms “design thinking” and “visual thinking” used interchangeably (not for the first time—and definitely not for the last). Now, most people who work in business strategy, innovation, or problem-solving can tell you that design thinking and visual thinking are not the same, but not everyone can easily articulate the difference. So in the interest of clarity and some serious cred at your next post-work cocktail hour, here’s a quick explanation of the difference between the two.

Simply put, Design Thinking is a method for problem solving. Visual Thinking, on the other hand, is a set of tools for making intangible or complex ideas visible.

So the next time you hear the term “design thinking,” remember this is the method being used to solve the problem. And the next time you hear “visual thinking,” recall this as the tool kit you draw upon to make that method more effective and efficient. And maybe remember that XPLANE helped you understand the difference between the two.

Some of the best infographics don’t deal with a bunch of numeric data. Instead, they are clear visual explanations of concepts, processes or complex ideas. This is one of those types of infographic designs done really well. It explains one idea very clearly, the difference between Design Thinks and Visual Thinking.

The main thing that XPLANE missed with this design, is that it will be shared on the Internet without the rest of the original blog post text. Very often the image is shared by itself, and companies that are really good at social media will make sure the image includes all of the relevant information. This image is missing a bunch for sharaeability:

  • Title

  • Sources

  • Brand

  • Copyright

  • URL back to the blog post

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