One of the world’s leading design driven innovation companies, The Design Thinkers Academy, who counts Nike, Google, Philips and Shell as clients, is partnering with Big Motive in Belfast to create Design Thinkers Academy Ireland, with tickets for its first event now live.

Hosted in The Mac, the two-day event on Tuesday 7 and Wednesday 8 April will give participants fundamental skills to develop and deliver change, generate innovative ideas and build the mindset required to tackle big challenges within their organisations.

Founded in Amsterdam, The Design Thinkers Academy is represented in 18 countries worldwide and has involved more than 25,000 design thinkers in its global events. Its aim is to help ambitious teams make the transition from being strictly product orientated and sales driven, towards being service orientated and human centred.

Design thinking is being adopted into the Northern Irish business terminology aided by the work carried out by Big Motive over the last 10 years. Although brands such as Coca-Cola, Allstate, Seagate, Failte Ireland and Catalyst all work with Big Motive’s customer experience consultancy, the pace of change in Northern Ireland remains slow, something Damian Cranney, managing partner of Big Motive is keen to address.

He says, “Indigenous Northern Irish businesses have been slower to adopt design at a leadership level despite the fact it can radically help nurture innovation, create business sustainability, and foster opportunities for growth. However, design thinking is showing up in Ivy league schools as a fundamental element of business education and is also a huge aspect of how the world’s leading tech companies are creating more customer-centred products and services. Thankfully this mindset is reaching Northern Ireland through the FDI community as well as pricking the interest of the business and engineering facilities in Queens and Ulster University.

“Every organisation whether public sector, private sector or start-up should realise the importance of design thinking to de-risk innovation and adapt an experimental approach to creating service experience built around their customers. The course we are delivering will provide practical tools to help build this mindset so that participants can implement what they’ve learned, lead change and inspire growth within their companies. The fact that we are partnering with global leaders on the subject is a real coup and something we are proud and very excited about.”