According to Wikipedia… HCD is Human-centred design is an approach to interactive systems development that aims to make systems usable and useful by focusing on the users, their needs and requirements, and by applying human factors/ergonomics, and usability knowledge and techniques.
HCD was initially created for UI/UX designers.
IDEO are the originators of HCD and these beautiful people later went ahead to craft a framework for designing strategy that is human-centered and business-focused.

Human-centered design is a framework that focuses on the Human behaviors/needs (psychographics) when crafting a solution for a problem while strategy on the other hand is Making choices under uncertainty and competition to achieve a winning aspiration”

“Great strategy begins with a problem and a question.”


And most business strategies don’t begin with the right question to the problem.
Reasons are:
1. Most business strategist ask questions to a business problem based on their personal bias about the problem (most of us like to feel like smart Aleck 😌).
2. Most business strategist already have a potential solution to the perceived problem.

© RubyGarage.

So how do we begin by asking the right questions when developing our business strategies?
By firstly focusing on the users… Why do your potential users perceive A as a problem.
Understanding why your users perceive A as a problem will give you a better insight in crafting a business solution that solves A.

We will look at two frameworks that can be used as tools in developing strategy that is human-centered and business-focused.
First is a strategy process map that will serve as a guide in crafting a business solution that is user-centric.

1. Identify a problem that is user-centric. (Something your potential users/audiences considers as a problem).
2. Frame strategic questions. These are questions help gives insights to why your users have this problem
3. Generate strategic possibilities – brainstorm possible ways in solving your user’s problem.
4. What would be true – in this stage we define conditions under which each highlighted possibility could be a winning strategy. E.g for me to develop an app that connects lost friends online, I should know how to code or have unlimited resources to programmers.
5. Identify barriers – these are conditions that pose a threat to your possible solution from becoming your strategic solution.
6. Test to learn – conduct research and test your possible solution with your potential users for insight on how it solves their problem.
7. Make a choice – Bring all that you’ve learned, and use the insights from your test to choose a strategic solution that solves your users problem.

Now that we have identified our winning solution that is user-centric, the second strategy framework is the Strategy choice cascade that serves as a guide in the implementation/execution of your strategic solution.

1. Defining your winning aspiration/goal/objective. Define what winning in your business looks like.
2. Where to play. This is basically defining a playing field for your strategic solution. This includes four dimensions: Geography, customers, channels of engagement and product offering.
3. How to win is basically defining the competitive advantage of your strategic solution.
4. Capabilities – these are activities that you need to build your competitive advantage. This might include customer service, innovation etc.
And lastly, management system – these are infrastructures, systems, processes and metric that support and measures the success of your strategy over time.


This is a piece from our Bi-weekly GBG Yaba Community Roundtable anchored by . Do you want to connect with a network of entrepreneurs and startups owners leveraging tech and sharing knowledge for business growth? Join GBG Yaba today.