In order to understand and solve problems, I practice design thinking. It is a variation of the popular for human-centered design framework that many top-level designers use, which keeps process steps to minimum, while also ensuring that no critical data points and considerations are lost. My approach is flexible, and the nature of the problem and constraints define the steps that use for each project. Below is a sample list of steps that I might take for a product-design process, though I try to be very adaptive to each environment that I work in.
I like to thinking of the project in 2 phases: problem and solution. In its essence, a good design process leads to a deep understanding of a problem, as well as crafting an effective and elegant solution that meets the needs of the end users, as well as the business.
Once the prototype is built and tested, I create and apply branding.
Finally, the final design is put together, along with any agreed upon handoff artifacts.
To start, I dive into any available data and existing artifacts that can help get me more familiar with the domain and the current state of the product (or concept).