About Us

Innovate Better. Faster. Together.

Let’s be honest, the old agency model calls for renewal. We see agencies all around, obviously struggling to adapt to the digital world and tweak their old working methods for a world that is obviously not patient enough to wait for them to get it right. But as common wisdom suggests, the only way to survive is to innovate and continuously transform into something else, while staying true to your company’s identity.

Design Sprints Studio is more agile studio, rather than large-scale agency with overly complex hierarchies. We believe that our way of working creates a higher level of focus and fosters better team collaboration that saves time and money for the clients we serve. Our rapid, agile approach to product strategy and design, which combines consultation and product sprint workshops (known as Design Sprints, Design Thinking, Design Doing and Product Thinking), has proven to be the most effective way to utilize available resources, whether it’s time, budget, or team.


Businesses have to make decisions quickly, ship products, learn from the market and iterate continuously.

Design Sprints Studio was founded by Martin Backes, with the motto: Innovate Better. Faster. Together. The exact opposite of the conventional Design Agency, Design Sprints Studio has always been digital, lean and agile. With a highly efficient small team and a selected fluid network of specialists and all-rounders at our disposal; Design Sprints Studio is dedicated to creating top-notch products and services, without wasting your time or budget.

Why Design Sprints Studio?

1️⃣ We run and teach Sprint Workshops full time, not as a side hustle or a hook for a larger engagement. This means you get an effective, battle-tested process.

2️⃣ We’re practitioners first. We use our experience in strategy, design, lean, UX, agile and workshop design to customize Sprints according to your needs. This means you have the best chance of success.

3️⃣ We run Sprint Workshops for large companies, governments, social enterprises, and educational institutions. We can compete with the largest agencies in the world, which means you get world-class talent without the inflated egos or prices.

4️⃣ We love what we do and have dedicated our most valuable resource – our time – to building a company that allows us to pursue our life’s work. As a result, you’re treated as a partner and receive our promise to deliver our very best work.

We are passionate. We are driven by purpose. We Are Design Sprints Studio.


The core team

Design Sprints Studio Team - Martin Backes

Martin Backes

Innovation Facilitator & Consultant, Product Strategist, and Sprint Coach

Design Sprints Studio is run by award-winning designer & consultant Martin Backes. He is a certified Design Sprint Facilitator by Jake Knapp (the creator of the Sprint at Google Ventures) and AJ&Smart. Additionally, he is co-founder of aconica, a design studio specialised in the fields of UX & IxD design, branding, sound & media design, media-enhanced scenography, and multi-sensory marketing. His portfolio comprises over ten years of experience in consulting and designing for brands, mobile and website platforms, in-vehicle infotainment systems, music soft- and hardware, financial services, and museums. His passion for design spans all known (and some unknown) forms of media, for major companies such as VW, Škoda, Miele, Bayer, Google, YouTube, Linde, MINI, BMW, Native Instruments, and Blinkist. Since 2009 he has been working as a lecturer at various universities worldwide. Martin founded Design Sprints Studio as a way to apply Design Thinking, Business Strategy, Innovation, Behavior Science, and of course Design Sprints to larger-scale problems.

Design Sprint Studio Team - Mikko Milz

Mikko Milz

Creative Director, UX & Product Designer, and Workshop Facilitator

Mikko Milz is an UX designer and creative director with 20 years of experience in visual and interaction design. Experienced in leading teams from concept to the final product, he has designed a variety of platforms and award-winning digital products for financial institutions and corporations to startups and government departments, namely Mercedes-Benz, Volkswagen, Audi, Postbank, and many more. Analyzing problems and developing user-centric, future-proof solutions is exactly his cup of tea. By asking the right questions, listening carefully, and methodically approaching every step along the way, he creates delightful and user-friendly experiences. Besides user experience design and co-facilitating Sprints here at DSS, Mikko helps to turn our clients promising ideas into products and services. No matter if you are designing digital products like intuitive car configurators, modern online banking, or complex and future-proof design systems, he is convinced that Design Sprints are clearly the best way to develop solutions quickly and effectively.

Design Sprints Studio Team - Liza Sander

Liza Sander

Future Strategist, Workshop Facilitator, and University Lecturer

Liza Sander is a future strategist, workshop facilitator, and university lecturer for social-ecological design processes with strong visionary, conceptual, and executional skills with over 10 years of experience working in multi-disciplinary environments including educating, coaching, life cycle design, product development, research, and marketing. She especially loves to share her expertise in circular economy & design, open-source economy, zero waste principles, and design thinking. Besides working in cooperation with the German Corporation for International Cooperation (GIZ), and The German Council for Sustainable Development (RNE), she teaches at various universities on social-ecological design processes, with a focus on circular economy and design. Here at Designs Sprints Studio, Liza supports design innovative and sustainable products and services or optimizes existing processes besides facilitating Design Sprints or other workshop formats. She is definitely the right person to make your business future-fit and ready for the Circular Economy.

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