Industrial-Strength Design Thinking

Cyber forensics force asking,
"What did we miss?" and "Why did we miss it?"

Investigations are at least uncomfortable, if not ugly. As are:

  • Root causes ignored
  • Cost of damage control
  • Cost of wastefully complex security apparatus
  • False sense of security
  • Painful feeling of running faster yet falling behind

(Learn more about where cyber forensics led us in "The Story.")

Start by exploring 4 questions:

  • What is design thinking?
  • Industrial-Strength Design Thinking bringing something different to your needs
  • Industrial-Strength Design Thinking solving root causes and real problems
  • Industrial-Strength Design Thinking as a force multiplier in your organization

Don't wait for security incidents and forensics:

What is design thinking?

Design thinking is thinking like a designer -- innovative problem-solving

Observing how people behave to discover what people might need or desire from a new product.

Design in art, architecture, clothing, food and more flourished for thousands of years. Design became formalized into schools of thought.

Design thinking formalized thousands of years of design in art, architecture, clothing and food. Then into psychology, sociology, anthropology, biology and more.

In business, design thinking has been applied in diverse products including autos, home appliances, consumer electronics, manufacturing and food.

Design thinking informs the user experience in human-computer interface by blending storytelling with ease of using computers. 

Industrial-Strength Design Thinking goes beyond design thinking to include: style plus ease of use, manufacture and service. 

Industrial-Strength Design Thinking empowers cybers pros? Read on...

Industrial-Strength Design Thinking bringing something different to your needs

If design thinking is already used in your company, then you’ve already witnessed the success in breakthroughs in new products, operations, marketing, customer service and more. As a consumer, you've benefited from design thinking.

Design thinking starts with challenging established norms (called paradigms, frames or perspectives in design-lingo). It asks…

  • Are those still effective?
  • Were they ever?

Challenging and "breaking the mold" 

  • In art, architecture or fashion, challenge is to trend-set
  • In business, the challenge is to discover unrealized needs and desires that become new product opportunities
  • In cybersecurity, the challenge is to reveal threats and vulnerabilities (including those caused by "trusted doctrine"), and reveal smarter ways to reduce your attack surface.
  • In military, the challenge is to save lives in combat and more easily achieve mission

Industrial-Strength Design Thinking starts by challenging assumptions about the nature of the system in which cyber risk lives. Which is it?

  • Linear, stable, highly rules-based, where most bad actors are internal? Like finding accounting errors.
  • Dynamic, chaotic system, highly adversarial, where most bad actors are external? In this situation, success comes from thoroughness and speed of thinking, learning and adapting.

Asking these questions is key to solving the real problems in cybersecurity today.

Curious about Industrial-Strength Design Thinking? Read on…

Industrial-Strength Design Thinking solving root causes and real problems.

Industrial-Strength Design Thinking is proven and practical...

For you as an individual, it gets you off the gerbil wheel -- for starters, cutting stress and burnout :). 

  • This starts by separating the structural flaws of cybersecurity from the implementation flaws
  • Then focuses structural flaws (e.g., incorrect use of math and methods)
  • Running faster on a gerbil wheel to fix implementation flaws without first fixing structural flaws won't get you anywhere. Just burns you out and causes stress!
  • This is a lifesaver! (Your family will thank you too!)

For your organization, these "how tos:"

  • Tune-up your organization to cut stress, burnout and cost
  • Avoid self-inflicted incidents and breaches due to structural and implementation flaws.
  • Increases resilience, especially by dovetailing systems thinking and asking, "How does it work?" and "Why does it work that way?"

Because methods that you are forced to use fail to realize:

  • The magnitude of change, complexity and fatigue -- catalysts of risk
  • That cybersecurity is a dynamic, chaotic system -- requiring "emergent practice" ("best practice" only works for stable systems)
  • That divergent thinking is needed (convergent, siloed, group think invites breaches)
  • That "frameworks" -- by being freezing learning in the past and fencing out iterative learning and innovation -- become the self-inflicted cause of security incidents and breaches.

Industrial-Strength Design Thinking creates knowledge (math and method).

For the answer, read the next Q&A…

Industrial-Strength Design Thinking as a force multiplier in your organization

Industrial-Strength Design Thinking is a rich set of tools catalyzing spectacular successes. Yet, there is more to fashion design than a color pallet.

For success, needed are…

  • A process that embeds design in the lifecycle of a product
  • In business, this is New Product Management
  • To make New Product Management successful requires organizational change for improved teaming.
  • Systems thinking to understand the "how it works" that enables "Why?" and future "What if?" questions to be asked and to discover root causes and real (not superficial) problems. 
  • Asking and learning enables "because..." answers. 
  • Like Cyber Forensics, but before a breach.
  • These "What if?" scenarios are robust and life-like as in novels or films, unlike the limited scenarios of typical risk management
  • To bring together the mix of humanities and sciences that has propelled the success of Industrial-Strength Design Thinking requires “diverse, diverse high-performance teams.” “Diverse, diverse” means diversity in ways that are both visible and invisible -- overcoming group and conformity through ideas and life journey.
  • This is because – especially in deeply specialized disciplines – diversity can hide group think and conformist adherence to “trusted sources.” Fake diversity. Meaningful diversity is needed.
  • Coaching in context of cybersecurity – not just general leadership.
  • Instead, individual coaching for individual people specifically in context of cybersecurity and business outcomes. This is similar to individual coaching in a sport or musical instrument.

Now you know the answers to the four questions.

Are you feeling empowered by Industrial-Strength Design Thinking

At least, are you curious to learn more? 

Are you an active learner by nature?

To discover more about how these insights can make your job (and life) easier, cut stress and better protect your organization and make our world safer from adversaries, you are welcome to explore the "Learn More" page and join in this initiative. 

Sign up on our Contact Page to receive…

  • A welcome package with the next layer of insight
  • Notification when registration opens for an online intro to design thinking for cybersecurity

Scroll down for a bonus...

Bonus: What is unique about Industrial-Strength Design Thinking

If you've read this far, you'd probably like to know that:

  • Appearance/style PLUS ease of use, manufacture and service that are vital to cyber. Then to generations of product renewal until retirement -- "whole-life" design.
  • Designing diverse, high-performing teams so cybersecurity design success is easier and overcomes "group think"
  • Organization design to reduce cyber pro burnout
  • New Product Management
  • Challenging existing paradigms/frames/perspectives/doctrines. Of course, military has been a source of inspiration for cybersecurity pros.

Industrial-Strength Design Thinking is in sharp contrast to limited uses of design in tech and cybersecurity: 

  • User Experience (UX) – using design tools to 1) help prevent user actions that lead to an incident or 2) design security “controls” for ease of use
  • Include security earlier in software development

industrial-Strength Design Thinking goes beyond far typical design. This is to achieve:

  • Scale throughout an organization
  • Efficiency and effectiveness in project management
  • Change that sticks” beyond the tenure of an initial champion

Contact us for a consult to learn more

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