• Industrious, Diligent, Studious in Denver & Bozeman





    German for Industrious, Diligent, Studious

    fleißige hände – 
    willing hands    fleißig lernen – learn as much as one can


    We believe:

    ∙ design thinking and creativity can solve most problems

    ∙ creativity is a key source of differentiation and competitive advantage

    ∙ learning happens in all spaces: the office, the classroom, the community


    We create:

    ∙ value by helping people recognize their creative assets

    ∙ processes to enrich organizational strategy and improve performance


    For us, design thinking is more than the “buzzword” that it’s become. It’s a tool that has proven its worth at many of the world’s leading companies and organization as a part of their innovation strategies. It is also a tool that has proven to help teachers and schools solve problems in education.


    At Fleissig Design, we develop personalized programs to help you understand and use the design thinking process. In our workshops, you will explore design thinking and work through the process to integrate it into your daily work. Whether you are a classroom teacher hoping to hack your curriculum for efficacy or a business leader planning to use the process to more effectively structure meetings, our objective is to help you use design thinking as a tool in your work and in your life.


    Depending on client needs, resources and goals, we design workshops and experiences that range from shorter one time sessions to longer multi-day engagements spread over a period of time. Our workshops are opportunities to obtain a deeper understanding of the design thinking process in a personalized context. Our goal is to empower and re-energize the work that our clients do. Our services include:



    • Introduction to Design Thinking
    • Design Sprints
    • Mindset and Creativity Development
    • Curriculum | Work Hacks


    We offer coaching – in person and virtually – to help support individuals or teams that are seeking to develop innovative mindsets and strategies for their work. We will work with you to develop personalized goals and then meet with you on a regular basis to provide feedback and resources that support growth and the achievement of your goals.

    Learning/Professional Development Experience Design

    We love helping organizations design opportunities that bring people together to collaborate, connect, learn and play! We believe that a well-designed experience can cultivate creative confidence, improve group dynamics and promote innovative problem-solving. Using human-centered design, we will help you develop learning opportunities that increase agency and improve culture within your organization.

    • Curriculum Development & Design
    • Journey | Experience Mapping
    • Student Expedition Planning & Design
    • Strategic Planning Sessions, Identity Work, Retreat Planning

    We know that design thinking will empower your organization and give you a competitive advantage. We work with companies, schools, and organizations that do good and value growth.

  • TEAM

    Tom Thorpe

    Principal - Strategy

    Relationship building, empathy, and creativity are at the center of Tom's approach to life. He has found creative freedom in learning alongside his students and colleagues. The design thinking process has reenergized everything that Tom does. He knows that intentionality, an engaged perspective, and creativity can solve problems. Impasse is not an option.


    Tom is a “quick study” whose creative outlets – learning, teaching, photography, cooking, and the outdoors – allow him to differently understand businesses and industry.


    Tom has taught in Harlem NY, Dallas TX, New Canaan CT, and Denver CO. He has served on reaccreditation teams, collaborated with schools in Turkey and China, and presents at national conferences. Outside of education he serves on a number of boards.


    As a father of four young children, Tom knows how to think quickly and deeply, while keeping priorities in focus. He enjoys strong coffee in the morning, makes stuff happen during the day, and celebrates all of it at about 5:30 p.m. with anyone who will join him. Tom used to think that all a man needed was a Jeep, a dog, and a fishing pole, but now his wife, Wendy, helps him think about life much more creatively.



    Paul Kim

    Principal - Design

    As a fourth grader, Paul's teacher told him that he could do whatever he wanted after he finished his work. He decided to throw a paper airplane across the room. Keeping to her word, Mrs. Ryan didn’t punish him for the disruption.


    For a variety of reasons including this event in the fourth grade, Paul became a teacher and has taught everything from kindergarten to college over 25 years.


    After 20 years of using more traditional approaches to teaching, Paul disrupted his own classroom by adopting design thinking practices in his work. He has also initiated new programs to bring innovation to each of the schools where he has worked.


    Outside of his work in education, Paul co-founded Dot-to-Dot Children’s Books with former students and published 12 books. He has also spoken at conferences, including TEDx Denver Teachers, published articles, and co-chaired a national conference on diversity. 


    In his free time, Paul enjoys getting out and about to explore cities across the country. He and his wife Tami also love to entertain at their home in Northwest Denver.


    Dalton McCurdy

    Principal - Collaboration

    Self admittedly, Dalton is impatient for change. She is fueled by ideas, inspired by collaboration, and is unafraid to be a change agent. She lives by this mantra, both as a teacher and as a mother of three young girls. Dalton grew up in the independent school world, spending afternoons in her father’s classroom playing with marble shoots and pulley systems.  Over the past twelve years, she has taught science to all grade levels 6th-12th at schools in Connecticut, Vermont, and Colorado. She believes that it’s important to model what she asks of her students- taking risks, embracing failure, and leaning into the discomfort of trying new things.

    Dalton’s expertise is backed by her MS in science education along with her background in authentic scientific data collection. She makes science approachable for her students by using real-world contexts and empathy in her teaching practice.


    Beyond her work in the science classroom, Dalton has been a leader in cross-curricular development and schedule restructuring at multiple schools.  She has worked in an innovation lab, facilitated design thinking workshops, coordinated a genius hour program, helped establish a summer program for underprivileged students, supervised data collection and coordinated outreach events for non-profits, and supported grant proposals involving NEPA and other state and federal regulations .

    Dalton values the balance of work and play and continues her pursuit of this equilibrium by road-tripping with her family, gardening, running, and trying to convince anyone who’s willing and crazy enough to join her on new adventures.  She also believes all days are just a little bit better if they end with a view of the mountains and the company of friends.




    DESIGN THINKING?  As teachers, we have designed lessons that offer students unique learning opportunities. As small-scale entrepreneurs, we know the value of design in developing strategy and iterative learning cycles.


    We love design thinking because its applications are limitless.


    We do not assume that we have the answers. Instead, we work to develop insights that matter. We use the tools of design thinking, anthropology, and culture studies to observe and learn. Then we work with you to develop creative strategies to address your challenges and problems.


    this is inspiring our learning right now

    We work to reimagine habits of mind by examining the essential processes within organizational structures and cultures. 
    Ira Glass: "But your taste, the thing that got you into the game, is still killer.
    And your taste is why your work disappoints you. A lot of people never get past this phase. They quit." 

    “I never set out to become anything in particular. 

    Only to live creatively and push the scope of my experience for adventure, for passion.”


    who we're working with

    Point Made Films

    telling stories that teach us about who we are as Americans and as citizens of the world
    New York, New York

    Point Made Films believes that by listening to and honoring other people’s stories, we get closer to discovering our own authentic selves. When we share those stories, human connections grow stronger.

    Chapter BE

    ...when you actively choose to change something that isn’t making you happy and start to explore what might be a better fit for you...
    Denver, Colorado

    Our lives are complicated and complex with many stops, starts, and turns along the way. So often we get on one certain path, and time takes over.  If this path is one that doesn’t satisfy, it can be challenging to step off of it and try to seek another one that might make us more content, fulfilled and whole.  But turning the page to the next chapter might be exactly what we need to lead a life that is on our own terms.

    Starfish Impact

    The mission of Starfish Impact is to unlock the potential of young women to lead transformational change.
    Sololá, Guatemala

    Right now, Starfish Impact believes that the place where this change is most needed is Guatemala, which has the unfortunate distinction as home of this hemisphere’s worst gender equality gap.

    let's explore the possibilities together