Design Thinking: Service Innovation as a Competitive Advantage

Organisations need to think entrepreneurially today, to survive the increasing speed at which complexity, interconnectedness, globalisation and change shift the business landscape. 


Innovation, and in particular Service Innovation, is both a process as it is an outcome. How we do something determines what we get from it. Over the past 10 years, Design Thinking has emerged as the most powerful model for how organisations approach this field of innovation. Grounded on a strong divergent frame of analysis, Design Thinking is a specific methodology that organisations can embed to ensure a steady stream of innovative solutions.

This programme will reveal how the Design Thinking approach allows for companies to re-think how they approach planning and execution. For example, Design Thinking allows for the re-perceiving of existing practices like benchmarking and instead refocuses the process on uncovering insights rather than solely for comparisons. Another example would be the deliberate use of “labs” for innovation where it is not only about technology but also about thinking differently about the future.

As an immersive two-day workshop where participants will get a practical understanding around how Design Thinking processes create innovation, this programme will push our traditional thinking around how innovation takes place.

Participants will learn how the process works, experience key components of this process and have the opportunity to even take an insight all the way to a solution. It will be supplemented with specific case studies for deeper understanding.


  • Understand the principles and approaches of Design Thinking
  • Learn the mechanics of how a Design Thinking process takes place
  • Apply the methodologies of changing context and/or scenario creation
  • Understand how Companies embed their innovation approaches
  • Use the pattern recognition problem solving skill around how insights become specific


  • Divergence and Convergence
  • Meta-Macro-Micro
  • Reperceiving as a Frame
  • Changing Context
  • Assumptions and Hypothese creation
  • Pattern Recognition
  • Insight Development


2 days, 9am to 5.30pm


Carlton Hotel


Managers of service quality and customer centric initiatives.

Professionals with work exposure to customer experience, marketing, quality assurance, operations, collaborative partnership or customer analytics.


Ms Karen Chew
Phone: +65 6828 0111


14 - 15 Mar 2019


16 - 17 May 2019




Mr Tony Lai
Managing Director
The Idea Factory

In a career spanning 22 years, Tony Lai has accumulated a range of experiences in leading and managing organizations – large companies, public institutions and even start-ups at senior levels. While his industry expertise has been focused largely around the services domain (hospitality, tourism, retail, media, education services, property management, F&B/Entertainment and management consulting), his functional capabilities have been broad covering areas such as strategy, innovation, design, leadership, business development, brand marketing & communications, human resources and corporate finance. These have been critical as Tony have been holding appointments at the CEO, Asst CEO, Managing Director, Chief Strategy Officer and COO levels since 2001 that includes direct P&L responsibilities.

Please find Tony's full CV here


SGD 2,675 (including 7% GST) per person
For Singapore Citizens / Permanent Residents
Fee payable to SMU after 70% WSG Grant*:
SGD 802.50 (incl. GST) per person
For Singapore Citizens over 40 years old
Fee payable after 70% WSG Grant & Mid-Career Enhanced Subsidy:
SGD 302.50 (incl. GST) per person
For SMEs* sponsoring their employees who are Singapore Citizens / Permanent Residents
Fee payable after 70% WSG Grant & Enhanced Training Support for SMEs
SGD 302.50 (incl. GST) per person

*WSG funding is available to Singapore Citizen (SCs) and Singapore Permanent Resident (PRs), terms and conditions apply.

This programme has been approved for the Absentee Payroll Funding. The Human Resource department of individual participant will be required to process the Absentee Payroll and any additional funding that the participant is eligible for, no later than 30 days after programme commencement.

All workshops are subject to confirmation. ISE ​will ​send ​you ​a ​Confirmation ​email ​2 ​weeks ​before ​the ​course ​commencement ​date ​or ​when ​the ​minimum ​number ​is ​met, ​whichever ​is ​earlier. Upon confirmation of the workshop, a Tax Invoice will be sent via email to you.

ISE members will incur four (4) training credits per SC/PR staff for this workshop. For more information, please contact Karen at 6828 0111.

ISE reserves the rights to amend information including price, date, location, faculty, daily schedule and other details.