While most people would prefer to be sleeping their Saturday morning away, possibly recovering from a splitting hangover or simply catching up with their much-needed rest, I was jolted awake by my offending alarm clock at 8am.

Not a very pleasant awakening, considering the fact that I only had 5 hours of sleep the night before.


I was invited to a teaser workshop/training session by Genovasi Malaysia at its headquarters in Petaling Jaya.  Can you believe this set-up is part of their office? Coolbeans. Cool


Let’s see how well my brain functions under such circumstances, eh?

Time to work the grey matter!


But first, coffee.


After grabbing my brew of the day, I adjourned to Genovasi’s headquarters which was located right across the road from Artisan Roast HQ.

How convenient 😛


Entering Genovasi’s premises!


A little background before we begin Ha Ha

Genovasi Malaysia is the only Design Thinking School in Malaysia and the leading regional partner for the Hasso Plattner Institute (HPI) School of Design Thinking at Potsdam University, Germany.

(The HPI School of Design Thinking is a sister institute of the school at Stanford University, USA!)


They aim to inspire, create and empower a movement of innovators for the betterment of self, environment and the world. 

In promoting an innovation culture through its education and training programmes, they emphasize 3 main key points:




Innovation (duh!)


I personally find their office a really conducive working environment; it was really in line with their visions and missions! Check it out.



Most people find it a dread to brainstorm when enclosed within four walls or work according to their run-of-the-mill repetitive and mundane routine. Or if you want to see something more physical, check out the time I went to Skytrex Adventure years ago.

But just look at Genovasi’s colourful and unique office! *gasp* No excuses for not being able to work well anymore!






They also have many idea-boards and idea-walls around the premises!

This I believe, is to give rise to breakthrough thinkers and doers and to use design thinking methods to inspire multidisciplinary teams.





After the brief introduction, we were taken upstairs!

Time for another tour around the office, before kick-starting our teaser workshop of Design Thinking.


 Couldn’t help taking a picture of the lightbulbs and black and yellow photo frames.

Such creative yet simple inspiration for interior decor!


Once we arrived the first floor, the fun and friendly representatives shared the Genovasi journey with us. Smile

It was a trip down memory lane since its inception, what they’ve accomplished so far until this very day.




After briefly learning their history, it was now our turn to experience the Genovasi way and for ourselves!

Felt a wee bit excited, as this was my first time undergoing a design thinking course.



Sometimes, we all need a refreshing take on the way we think and how our minds work. That way, we can derive more ideas, alternatives and perspectives to put into practice in our everyday lives.

For example, in my day job, I’m involved in a lot of social media ideation and strategies, so this would definitely be of good help!


 Let’s begin!


 Learning the human-centered approach to design thinking.


 We were given a mini design project to apply our newfound thought skills


The case given to us was an interesting scenario.

We were supposed to undertake a challenge to help a man suffering from acute arthritis who is now rendered unable to write like an average human being. Yell


Our fingers/knuckles were taped together to replicate the issue at hand.

We had to put ourselves in his shoes before we can help him – empathy at its best!


 Audrey and I struggling to hold a pen, let alone write with it!


 Our writing was almost illegible with our fingers taped together. Darn!


This ain’t gonna work well.

 Yes, yes, go ahead and laugh at my pathetic scribbles of handwriting.

I implore you to write with your fingers taped together by masking tape!


Eureka! That’s when the Genovasi idea lightbulb illuminates.


 With all the recyclables, junk, odds and ends and other raw materials!


 One man’s trash is another man’s treasure!

 Let’s get crackin’


Here are the raw materials I’ve gathered according to the sketch I’ve drafted.

My draft and the prototype draft.

I devised an enormous writing tool which did not require the injured person to involve his fingers in the process of writing.

As an alternative, he will be using more of his wrist and arm to control the movements instead. Big Smile


 Don’t laugh at my idea. It may not be the best, but every idea is a gateway to spark even brighter ideas!

 My oddly shaped writing tool and I.

Come on.. there’s nothing technology can’t engineer! 😛

Buddy Rosalyn and I having a bit of fun while we brainstormed.

A lot of silly fun. Hey, all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy!

Buddy Audrey’s creation alongside mine.

Ours was a slightly similar-looking prototype but our concepts were completely different.

It’s judgement day! HAHA.

We were each supposed to place our prototypes on the table and explain how it will most likely work. Tongue Out

This feels like Show and Tell! The Genovasi representatives check out our works and gave us solid and constructive criticism (and compliments too, of course!)

This totally reminds me of high school all over again. Arts and Crafts was one of my favorite subjects in school.

Here are some of our works.

Don’t ask me to elaborate how and what each creation does. I don’t know either!

But hey, they’re pretty darn creative no? Laughing

Considering the fact that we had only approximately 25 minutes to build it, I’d say we deserve a pat on our backs for a good attempt!

What I’ve experienced today was just a teaser!

For the full version, Genovasi offers the Design Thinking Programme through the Innovation Ambassador Development Programme (IADP) frees up your imagination for a purpose through the 20-day Design Thinking programme conducted by the HPI School of Design Thinking @ Genovasi.

You will be trained in the Design Thinking methodology and work in multidisciplinary teams, in partnership and radical collaborations with top organisations in Malaysia to solve real world problems by also use prototyping to discover new solutions.


Thank you, Genovasi Malaysia for an enlightening session!

One does not simply wake up early on a Saturday morning…

but when I do, I’m glad today was well worth it.



For more information on Genovasi and how to be a part of it, get in touch with them!

Log on to their official website at: www.genovasi.my

Drop them an e-mail at: info@genovasi.my

Call them at this contact number: 03-7954 0628

Visit them at this address: Lot 2A, Jalan 13/2 46200 Petaling Jaya Selangor Darul Ehsan Malaysia


LIKE them on Facebook at: www.facebook.com/mygenovasi

Follow them on Twitter at: twitter.com/mygenovasi

Join them on Instagram at: instagram.com/mygenovasi

Watch them on YouTube at: www.youtube.com/user/MYGenovasi