Six Phases of a Design Sprint

Shruti Dwivedi
2 min readMay 12, 2020

Six phases of design sprint which is helpful to know to run the smooth design sprint.

Design Sprint: Six Phases

You probably still asking yourself, how exactly does the design sprint works? Well! There are six phases of a design sprint and will walk through what happens in each one by one. The first two phases (understand & define) are about understanding the problem. The next two phases (sketch & decide) are about coming up with a ton of possible solutions and narrowing it and picking one. The last two phases (prototype & validate) are about building out and testing them. Now let’s talk about each phase:

1. Understand: The goal of this phase is to create a shared understanding of the problem space, the user, the competition, and why it all matters. Align as a team on a focus moving forward for the rest of the sprint.

2. Define: Start by focusing on where you want to end. By setting goals you can work backwards to understand what needs to happen in order to get there.

3. Sketch: Start by focusing on where you want to end. By setting goals you can work backwards to understand what needs to happen in order to get there.

4. Decide: Bring it all back together and decide on one idea to take through prototyping and validation.

5. Prototype: Map out and build a prototype of your idea.

6. Validate: Check to make sure that your idea is solving a real user need and that it can be built! It’s a great value addition to the user.

Each phase has a set of tools that can be used to facilitate reaching the goal of each phase. Remember, it’s not necessary to use every tool for a given phase. Instead, you should focus on picking the best tool for the problem you are trying to tackle and the composition of your sprint team. I will explain each of them in upcoming blogs.

Thanks for reading. Follow me for the upcoming blogs for the design sprint topic.

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Shruti Dwivedi

Data Product Manager. Building products that are capable of solving the customer’s problem. Customer obsession & ownership are the two principles that I believe