“How Might We…” is a question that encourages solutions. It is the simple act of using these words to turn a complaint or problem into an opportunity for collaboration and innovation. For instance, it might not be in the budget to purchase a new software program that your team needs or desires. One might say “We can’t afford that software”. However this is simply stating a problem. Instead say “How might we purchase that software?” or “How might we move forward with obtaining the software we need?” The “How Might We…” questions open up the floor for others to suggest alternate methods of reaching a goal.
Everyone encounters roadblocks or hindrances to reaching a goal. The verbalization of the inability to do something can be a discouraging prospect that impedes creative thinking. It is important to utilize the “how might we” mindset in order to jumpstart the creative process, potentially providing the challenge and environment to inspire the discovery of unconsidered resolutions or courses of action.
This process can be used for every issue you encounter in your design journey. However to get you acclimated to using the process, we recommend that you compile a list of three or four issues you are experiencing and employ the “How Might We” method to develop some potential solutions.
Step 1: Gather several colleagues and present the issues. Then enquire “How might we” fill in the blank to properly frame our intended solution? Don’t be too specific. This will provide space for diverse suggestions
Step 2: Invite the team to rephrase the issues as “How Might We” challenges.
Step 3: As a team, choose which of the “How Might We” challenges most closely encapsulates your goals laid out in the design brief and will guide the team on the correct path to accomplish them.