Steve Blank is one of the real thinkers in the innovation space who gets out there into the weeds and gets stuff done.
The illustration at the top of this post is one from a recent post on his blog that makes the very real point that everything should start with the customer, not the product, inventors vision, financial potential, or any of the other usual drivers of activity.
So often we forget this simple truth.
The Lean startup and business model canvas methodology are fantastic ways to articulate your business, but without a customer you do not have one.
Design thinking is all about starting with the customer in mind, using the tools that are there to discover ways to add value to them in some way, and as a result, make a return on the way through.
It matters little if you are a micro business on the corner or a massive multinational, the principals are the same:
Focus on the customer
Encourage the dissenters
Leverage the wisdom of the crowd
Encourage chaos, and build the processes to distil and manage it
Design thinking is really hard, challenging work, but nowhere near as hard as design doing.