My design process is based on the Double Diamond Design Process, collaboratively created for Open Design Kit , an open source toolkit incubated at Bocoup. The key is to understand a problem before jumping into the solution. That being said, the only process that matters is the process a team decides to use, based on a given project's context and constraints, and that requires transparent and open communication.
Discovering the right problem
Explore the problem space
The first half of discovery expands outward from the initial inspiration or problem, with research into stakeholder and user goals and needs, and any other relevant information for understanding the problem space, such as usage analytics. The output of the Explore mode is unstructured research findings.
Define the problem
The second half of discovery makes sense of the unstructured research findings through diagrams and models to identify themes, challenges, and opportunities. The result is an accurately defined problem that enables stakeholders to converge on a strategy. The output of the Define mode is design synthesis and strategy.
Delivering the right solution
Make potential solutions
The first half of delivery is creating multiple solutions of varying fidelity (whether sketches, wireframes, or prototypes) for testing. The output of the Make mode is testable prototypes.
Validate the selected solution
The second half of delivery is testing and iterating on a narrowed-down solution and refining it through implementation. The output of the Validate mode is an implemented solution.