Storytelling (Part 3): Overview about Design Thinking, Lean Startup and Agile Development

Holger Rhinow Programm-Manager bei der HPI Academy

Dr. Holger Rhinow, program manager HPI Academy

In recent articles I described a few notable differences and similarities in Design Thinking, Lean Startup and Scrum, namely the three most prominent industry standards in the context of agile teamwork.

At the HPI we illustrated our main observations in an overview that would show what happens within teams that work in these modes.

Design Thinking in a nutshell_Holger Rhinow_Storytelling Part 3

Design Thinking in a nutshell

  • We work in small teams that learn, discuss and explore together.
  • We focus on aspects of desirability, knowing that aspects of viability and feasibility need to be explored later on, as well.
  • We iterate between making observations (lower left corner) to interpreting these observations (upper left corner) to deriving to new ideas (upper right corner) to manifesting these ideas into prototypes (lower right corner) which help us to make a) new observations (cycle) or derive to a need-solution-fit (exit).
Lean Startup in a nutshell_Holger Rhinow_Storytelling Part 3

Lean Startup in a nutshell

  • In Lean Startup we ususally have an idea of what we are trying to solve but we need to convince investors or other stakeholders to buy-in.
  • We explore a promising business model around the idea and test critical hypotheses, usually with digital prototypes so that we can scale our testing.
  • In best case, our business model proves to be valid and we can thereby convince investors to fund our idea and start building a product based on a valid product vision.
Scrum in a nutshell_Holger Rhinow_Storytelling Part 3

Scrum in a nutshell

  • In Scrum we focus on materialising a product vision into concrete increments. Along the way (in sprints) we figure out how we are technically adressing certain ideas (curated by a Product Owner) but we hardly explore completely new opportunities anymore.
  • We organize ourselves based on a clear product vision and prioritized tasks, written down in a Product Backlog
  • We work in short sprints, test regularly individual features and hold reviews as a team, supported by a so-called Scrum Master.

From my personal experience, I believe that not all business projects and initiatives actually need an agile framework to work in. Therefore, in another article I want to highlight how we support companies in selecting those strategic opportunities that are rather suitable to be approached in an agile manner.

The illustrations are not designed for managing these processes but rather for educational purposes. They have been developed for a workshop on Design Thinking, Lean Startup, and Agile Development by the HPI Academy, in Potsdam.