I’ve run a few experiments this year as I kickoff working with teams who are innovating on the bleeding edge – blockchain. Below are two case studies from 2018 – click through to read the methods and takeaways.
GAMES, SPECULATIVE FICTION + DESIGN THINKING
Design Thinking is popular and proven technique for learning tons about a problem and coming up with a testable, human-centered idea to address it. To me, one of the key benefits is that it forces us to focus on high-value facets of an issue. It also asks us to get loose, creative, and examine assumptionsâ€Šâ€”â€Šand this is where I see a crossover with games.
Seeing people lean into creating the fiction narratives of two games I ran was delightful; imagination is a muscle and we can work it in fun ways to prepare us to use it for consequential purposes. When weâ€™re designing the future, scifi and speculative methods can help us create without any roadmap. Hereâ€™s three ways to use imaginative speculation in innovation design, drawn from the games I created [… read more on Medium]
METHODS FOR INNOVATION WITH A DEV TEAM
Key observation: user-centered design provided hackathon participants, many of whom had not met before, a shared reality, language and methodology to express a problem and build around.
A scaffolded process enabled team members to learn about human-centered design in manageable steps so they could apply it to their work. First in coaching calls with two team members I modeled collaboration, empathy, and defining the problem to solve: the project needed to focus the direction of work and wanted to use user needs as guides.
Next, the full team engaged in a remote prep session to introduce concepts of empathy mapping, alignment, and the value of identifying convergent and divergent ideas. Finally in an in-person workshop we dove into creating human-centered design guidelines by focusing on the problems their actual users have, and connected the ideas meaningfully to their upcoming decisions about how they might solve them. [… read more on Medium]