Industrial Design Thinking Boostcamp

A world-class design thinking learning experience as you know it from the d.Schools at HPI or Stanford but with a twist: it's tailored to industrial B2B(2C) companies and their industry context.

What it is

A Design Thinking Boostcamp with co:dify is an intensive and interactive “hands-on” learning experience, which is based on a real-world design challenge provided by a problem sponsor. You and your team will help this sponsor to come up with a really innovative solution, by ‘simulating’ the run-through of a design thinking process in just a couple of days. This gives you a very practical first impression of how design thinking and its techniques actually work. The sponsor can also be you as we can tailor the design challenge to a problem you want your teams to solve.

The training days emphasize practical trying out and agile working modes. So, most of the time there will be action, playful exercises, demos, and collaborative teamwork. Each team is accompanied by a senior coach, who helps them get unstuck and understand the methods taught in detail. Since teamwork is encouraged heavily, participants often leave the training with a stronger team bonding and sense of community.

Why it is needed

Applying design thinking in B2B(2C) is often harder than in B2C. Customers are more conservative, less willing or used to co-creation and also less emotional in their decision making. Decision-making and investment cycles are also longer and political in nature. It sometimes needs more stakeholder needs research than it needs user research. In order to take account of all this and other complexities, we focused this training. The methods participants will try out are the most important ones one should know when starting with design thinking in such an environment.

Why our customers love it

We have been told time and again that our design thinking boostcamps stand out from the “market” because they have a depth of content that others can’t match. This is due to the fact that we not only have years of experience in designing learning experiences, but all our formats are also enriched with the latest findings from innovation research and teaching. This comes in an alternation of hands-on activities with deep and scientifically founded theory and case study presentations. Now imagine all this with tailored content to the needs of B2B companies and you have it: the co:dify Industrial Design Thinking Boostcamp.

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Book an initial free consultation. We will be happy to guide you through this program’s details and assess whether it is right for your current situation.

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Some Impressions (Online & IRL)

For whom did we design this course?

For C-level managers, engineers, product managers, marketers, and staff from all divisions, who wish to strengthen their innovation capabilities and understand the usefulness and peculiarities of a design mindset in (industrial) B2B contexts.

C-Level Executives
  • Experience what a ‘designerly way of working’ feels like
  • Acknowledge the importance of design (thinking) in the 21st century
  • Witness first-hand the requirements for real agile team work
  • Understand the importance of customer discovery and (problem space) exploration
  • Get a glimpse into the power of qualitative research and design methods
  • Innovation Executives
  • Relect design’s role for innovation management
  • Learn via case studies in which environments design thinking can thrive
  • Understand what it means, to ’empower’ teams to work agile
  • Locate design thinking’s strengths and shortcomings within the myriad of innovation methodologies
  • Product Managers, Owners and Teams
  • Learn how to talk to and observe users and choosers
  • Get acquainted to new, useful tools and methods for daily project work
  • Get to know tips and tricks to organize teamwork more efficiently and fun
  • Realize the particularities of design thinking in B2B environments
  • Leave with dozens of tools and resources for project work
  • General Innovation Professionals

    All to the left and:

  • Reflect upon the role you wish to or can take in a multi-disciplinary team
  • Be able to better articulate what you need to progress in your (innovation) work
  • Get to know and exchange with like-minded peers
  • Make connections to other participants (within and outside your organization) that will help you advance your projects and career
  • s

    Agenda of the day

    Welcome, Check-In & Get to Know Each Other

    Action Kick-off

    • Design thinking in one hour with group reflection
    • Short appetizer case studies

    Presentation Inputs

    • What is design and what is its historical background? Why is thinking human-centric important in today’s digital world? What does that mean for corporate transformations in the industry?
    • Option: “Digital Transformation and Disruption — The Role of design thinking for Customer Experience Management and UX” Presentation
    • The difference between classic ‘Tech R&D’ and ‘Business R&D’
    • Q&A and group discussion

    Team Building Exercises

    Challenge Introduction and Framing

    • (Virtual) sponsor visit and challenge presentation
    • Input and methods introduction: “How to frame a design challenge”
    • Challenge (re)definition in team

    Daily Q&A

    Evening Drinks and Networking Session

    Team Check-in

    Preparing the User Research

    • Input and methods introduction: “The 101 of Design Research in Industrial B2B”
    • Dry runs of user research methods in  the team
    • Design of the user research and design probes

    Field Research and Synthesis

    • Contact with real people for interviews, observation and first experiments
    • Field research debrief
    • Synthesis of the field trip data; reframing of the problem

    Daily Q&A

    Preparing for Ideation and Prototyping

    • Questionstorming
    • Brainstorming and creativity techniques
    • How to prototype to ideate

    Prototyping and Testing

    • Formulating hypotheses and planning a test setup
    • Prototyping and testing techniques; demos and dry runs
    • Team tests with real users
    • Test debrief and iteration

    Outlook: How to further test a value proposition with quantitative data

    Daily Q&A

    Option: Evening Drinks and Networking Session

    Final Presentations (“Pitches”)

    • Mini pitch training
    • Group presentations
    • Sponsor feedback

    Team Checkout

    • Peer feedback and reflection
    • Expert coaches Q&A

    Group Outlook and Reflection

    • Group Q&A in plenum
    • Design thinking/innovation methods overview for B2B projects
    • Additional inputs according to demand: “DT Case Studies”, “Scaling DT”, “DT and Culture Change”, etc.

    How we balanced the design of this course:

    • Theory
    • Doing/Experimentation
    • Case Studies/Peer Learning
    • Reflection/Discussion

    What's in the package?


    You can join our co:dify tech support team for a hardware, software, and logistics onboarding session with all participants before the course starts.

Knowledge Activation

    You can already prepare yourself with our curated pre-reading package and free access to pre-course videos, which will help you digest the content of the days even better.

    Extensive Learning Materials

    You will receive PDF files of the exclusive presentations, posters, and templates we use in the course. This also includes digital whiteboard templates and the like.

    Access to Peer-Group Innovation Community

    You can join a protected 
workspace with fellow innovators for knowledge exchange. And if 
you like: also the ones from 
former cohorts.

Coach Call

    Each team can make use of an additional 45 min coaching session with their team coach in the weeks after the course. This is great for questions and reflection.

    Certificate of Completion

    You will receive an electronic letter and certificate of completion.

    Access to Presentation Recordings

    You will receive three months' access to the recordings of the online presentation inputs at no additional charge.

    "Frequent Flyer" Status

    As an alumni participant, you will receive special discounts for future learning experiences from us.

    Spark Talk Invitations

    You will be invited to our "Alumni Spark Talks", a bi-yearly online event where we discuss contemporary innovation topics with renowned experts.

    Next-Level Online Learning

    Our IRL trainings are always full highly interactive team work and experiential learning. That's why it was our ambition to create such a cutting edge experience remotely as well. To do this, we set up a live-streaming studio environment that allows us to create engaging, TV-like interactive learning experiences for you. So, we promise: you won't experience those standard and boring screen-share Zoom or Teams presentations with us.

    Frequently Asked Questions for This Course

    We are getting asked this question a lot. This intense training provides a first, enlightening glimpse into the methodology and how to work with it in practice. However, it is not a facilitator’s training and we want to emphasize that participating in any three or five-day training cannot prepare people for being a design thinking coach. We know from educational research that multi-day workshops are limited insofar, as they can only provide basic knowledge and first practical experiments due to time constraints and the restricted cognitive abilities that we, as humans, face. If you wish to certify yourself as a design thinking coach: this program is currently the best in Europe. And don’t forget in all the certification madness: the best way to become good at something is just practicing it over and over and over with passion. 😉

    No. As we are specialized on in-depth, intensive education programs we do not offer “design thinking as an event”. We also value quality over quantity and usually restrict our co:dify workshops to a maximum of 36 participants at best real product people.

    However, we are aware that there are situations where methodological education is not the primary goal. For example, you may want your employees to explore basic aspects of design thinking in a playful way. In these instances, we are happy to support you in identifying a suitable service provider from within our partner network?

    No. We only work with coaches and facilitators whom we know from previous teamwork and/or whom we have educated on our own. Thus, we work with client coaches in our standard formats only as a rare exception.

    In our experience, it is easier for participants to learn the methodology when they are working on a topic outside their subject area. When working in a subject area where they are experts in, participants tend to jump into concepts and solutions they already know, thus having difficulties to really empathize with customers’ needs. Hence we either recommend a selection of our tried and tested generic workshop topics that work in any organization or we co-design a customized workshop topic informed by your requirements. Here, it is possible to develop a suitable problem challenge from almost any area of life. An essential precondition is that it focuses on creating value for your customer or user (it can be internal employees or B2B customers). Please get in touch to discuss whether your problem space is suitable to be formulated into a design challenge.

    What we can already say, is that questions like “How can we increase our sales by 3% in 2017?”, “How can we become a market leader?” or “How can we lower our costs?” are rarely suitable for design thinking workshops. Of course, each innovation initiative has the goal to find answers to those questions, yet in design thinking, it is about discovering possibilities to create value for customers in the first place. It is only in further (iteration) steps that value propositions are translated into viable business cases which can contribute to the growth of sales or market shares.

    The spatial environment plays a major role in facilitating team collaboration and the evoking of new ways of working. Operating in established settings makes it hard for participants to immerse themselves in new working styles and mindsets, especially when a change of behavior and roles is essential. Hence, the ‘right environment’ is a central part of the learning experience. Furthermore, most meeting and conference rooms are equipped with a large conference table, which is not suitable for working actively in small teams.

    From our long-standing experience with interactive workshop formats in many different spaces, settings and company cultures we know the parameters that make a ‘collaborative space’. To establish the right setting for your Design Thinking Boostcamp, we can either book a suitable space or support you in identifying and adapting your own facilities to suit these requirements.

    Today we even work with ‘hybrid spaces’: a combination of IRL working environments and digital collaboration spaces (Notion, Miro, Mural, etc.). This combines the best of both worlds and accelerates projects significantly. Get in touch to learn more about it.

    Over the past years, we have studied and experienced the strengths and weaknesses of established formats from academic design thinking institutions as well as those run by consultants and other professionals (design thinking networks, agencies and companies). The co:dify Design Thinking Boostcamp is a best-of synthesis of these formats. Alongside a hands-on focus, we offer additional in-depth background information and methodology reflection, which was often found lacking in the eyes of participants of other workshops. Also, the focus on B2B is special.

    All co:dify workshop moderators and coaches are designated experts in their domains. Each of them has in-depth knowledge in specific subjects (e.g. Management Discourse, User and Design Research, Business Model Innovation, Service-Dominant Logic, etc.) and has a minimum of six years of experience in coaching, facilitation and moderation (our core member coaches all have 12+ years of experience).

    The Boostcamp builds on our professional education experience as well as our longstanding research on design thinking at high-level institutions (Hasso Plattner Institut, Chalmers University of Technology, Rotman, IE). Beyond that, co:dify experts are in involved in knowledge exchange with the most successful companies and researchers in the field through advisory roles and research projects.

    Yes. It can come in a three, four, or five-day version. The more days, the more method, theory and reflection depth. Get in touch to discuss the pros and cons of the shortened variants of the learning experience.

    Yes it is. The digital space will — of course — feel different to interacting IRL. But as many teams these days are remote only, or in parts are dispersed around the world, it is a welcome opportunity to get used to this ‘new normal’ of collaboration. We promise: it is also very rewarding and fun to master the details of digital collaboration tools. And you can just copy and paste all the tools and templates we use during the days for your further work. This is very convenient and really speeds up things.

    Tailored to your organization

    All of our courses and trainings are designed with internal innovators in large and mid-sized organizations in mind. We can tailor a version of the “Industrial Design Thinking Boostcamp" that suits your organizations situation, needs, and industry context.

    For details please get in touch with us.

    Video Call

    Book an initial free consultation. We will be happy to guide you through this program’s details and assess whether it is right for your current situation.

    Book Demo »

    Companies which trusted our in-house training expertise

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