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Ideo’s David Kelley on the “teachable approach”

A Fast Company article chronicling IDEO's David Kelly's cancer scare and his design philosophy that finally gave birth to the d.school. A good takeaway from the article, apart from being glad that David is now cancer free, is the notion of a "teachable approach" that some of his clients mention.

"Kaiser Permanente has always been innovation driven," says Christi Zuber, director of Kaiser's innovation consultancy, "but Ideo gave us a teachable approach."

A "teachable approach" or a set of methods and tools to continue the thinking is a long-term execution and governance strategy. I've seen some large scale projects but never have I seen a big consulting firm provide training and mentoring services for its clients to help them continue with the 'thinking'. I'm pretty sure that there are firms like IDEO that provide the "teachable approach" but it's not common practice. I guess it's got to do with how confident the company is about its future.

"I can give our methodology away," he [David Kelley] says at a staff meeting on Ideo's future, "because I know we can come up with a better idea tomorrow."

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