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Takeaways and reminders from SXC18

Service Experience Camp is not just another conference. Thought by service designers, for service designers, it is a 2-day “unconference” whose new edition always tops up the previous ones thanks to an amazing selection of design leaders as speakers, a passionate and proactive audience of practitioners, and a long list of carefully planned details that make participants feel like they don’t need to worry about anything else than just enjoying rich conversations and an inspiring atmosphere.

Gathering around 300 people from all over Europe on the first weekend of November, unfortunately this year’s edition – the fifth –  was announced to be the last. Perhaps this was the reason why its bar-camp, a grassroots format to provide participants with an informal space to run their own sessions, was so successful.  In fact, throughout the two days participants held a total of 30 open sessions, alternated by keynote speeches, networking moments, and delicious meals.

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One of the sessions run by participants

 

Before SXC18: Service Design Tour

This year, the conference program was preceded by a day-long Service Design Tour across 4 Berlin-based service design agencies. Having planned a longer stay in town, as soon as it was announced I immediately reserved a spot to discover different agencies approaches to service design and collect insights on how they overcome their most pressing challenges.

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The Service Design Tour kicked off at Service Innovation Labs

 

Starting the day with a breakfast in Kreuzberg, we first spent a couple hours at Service innovation Labs and then moved to Aperto by IBM. After a quick lunch on the way we visited Fjord, and lastly, Idean.

Here is a summary of my key insights from the Service Design Tour.

 

  • Impact beats enthusiasm

Whether we mean “impact” as financial, societal, environmental, or most often as the effect of our work on the client, the random and enthusiastic use of design thinking in business contexts seems to have come of age, leaving room to an increasing tendency towards making sure our service design efforts have a meaning and leave a long lasting, positive footprint not only on our users and clients but also (sometimes) on a larger scale.

 

 

  • The rise of new professional roles, a.k.a. what the heck is a business designer?

Something that really caught my attention concerns the rise of the new role of business designers, which just a bunch of years ago was not common at all. Perhaps due to the two world of business and design increasingly leaning towards each other, not only all 4 agencies we visited have business designers in the team, but they are actively recruiting more! Hence, upon investigation, I now understand a business designer is someone who is in charge of researching, testing, measuring and implementing a range of business related aspects into the service development process (like business models, service pricing, etc.).

In addition to business designers, another emerging professional role seems to be that of legal designers, as in those figures who take care of different legal aspects to take into account in innovation, and that are no longer engaged as an external party as in the past. In facts, it seems like almost all agencies we visited, regardless of stressing their core value proposition around service design, try to build a team of different professionals whose aim is to address and overcome challenges in the innovation journey from many different points of view.   

 

  • Team work

As opposed to the classic consultancy offering, most of these service design agencies seem to believe in building up (internal) multidisciplinary teams around a challenge, rather than allocating individual consultants to project. I really liked learning about this, as I strongly believe that sharing the joys and sorrows of a winding road with someone that has your same mindset leads to greater results.

 

Service Experience Camp 2018

Following the past edition theme “struggling for change”, this year focused on the topic of “crafting delight”, meant as the art of crafting experiences that delight users.

 

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Top 3 talks

Like in the past years, this edition’s content was very well curated from A to Z. Yet there are 3 talks that, in my opinion, will stay memorable:

1) Designing for Future life events  – Karolina Kohler, Lead Design Researcher @ Kaiser X Labs

Having never worked in the insurance industry nor bought myself an insurance, I had hardly reflected upon how different the characteristics of an insurance service are in comparison to any other service. Through her fun, engaging speech, Karolina Kohler walked us through her reflections on how aspects like value proposition, touchpoints and loyalty require a different approach in designing insurance services. In facts, in this context the purpose is not to delight users with enjoyable experience, but rather to provide concrete and efficient help whenever a tragic moment in life happens. And since that future tragic moment is something people prefer to not think about and that, by definition, is unexpected, insurance services are like “buying shoes that you receive yearly updates on, but never wear”, “or buying a movie by only knowing the title but without being able to watch it before the next 30 years”. Through a bunch of simple examples we all realised the design of insurance service runs on completely different premises than any other services!

 

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Karolina Kohler, Lead Design Researcher @ Kaiser X Labs

 

2) How making accessible services benefits all users – Alistair Duggin – Head of accessibility @ Government Digital Services UK

1/7 people in the world suffers from disability, and with an average of population age continuing to rise, it is likely that sooner or later disabilities will affect us – either directly or indirectly. With the mission of designing digital services that any citizen in the UK can use, Alistair Duggin reminded us how solutions designed for extreme users may positively impact other “less extreme” users. For instance, providing users the option to indicate whether they prefer to be contacted via written text only, they not only remove barriers for people with speaking impairments, but also for people who can’t answer calls during the day or that have very limited time to check their phone.  

 

3) Future-proof design for urban mobility in growing cities – Hanna Kops, Head of Experience @ Transport for London

Starting her speech with a blunt statement: “design is not about solving problems, it is about creating a space for people to experience something differently”, Hanna Kops set the stage in no time, walking the audience through a few important moments that marked the interesting story of the London tube. One of these is when the first pocket map of the tube was distributed in town: it was visual, tangible, and it helped people have a reference when defining London’s boundaries. By including all tube lines – from the central ones to those that touch upon the greater London geographical area, this first version of the London tube made people living in the most remote outskirts start feeling like they belonged to the city. “If the tube gets me home, I am a londoner too”. By redesigning the way people would experience public transport as a public space, over time London created a culture of public transport, by design.

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Hanna Kops, Head of Experience @ Transport for London

 

Cool hacks

During the conference I spotted a few practical example of cool workarounds that people have come up with to overcome their daily challenges.

  •  Lost in Jargon

The airline industry, like any other industry, is packed with acronyms and abbreviations. To deal with complex jargon, Maria Lumiaho and her team at Finnair created a Slack bot that, upon request, will suggest what these acronyms stand for whenever being lost in jargon during a meeting.

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Finnair team’s slackbot to navigate through acronyms and abbreviations

 

  •  Spread the news

To deal with complex stakeholder engagement, Frankie Abralind from Sibley Memorial Hospital hospital came up with the idea of making weekly postcard-like micro reports of his team work’s status updates and started distributing them on desks of key internal stakeholders, with the aim of informing them and making them feel like their involvement counts.

 

 

Takeaways and reminders

 

  • Stakeholder management goes beyond PR, a.k.a. design for perseverance

 

In a session about stakeholder engagement, we all found each other on the same page in facing lots of difficulties engaging with people in the organisations where we work. The conclusion drawn during this sessions was that we should apply some simple tricks like inviting people for coffee or having a smoke together to set up a space to communicate informally. I must admit, I was pretty disappointed about it. In facts, stakeholder engagement needs to push itself way beyond the basics of PR to really be effective. Thankfully, later Frankie Abralind reminded us during his talk that no matter the environment where we work, the only way to break through is to be persistent, make and update internal stakeholder maps on a regular basis, and create ownership over progresses by keeping everyone informed. In a nutshell: try, try again, and again.  

 

  • Will ethics in design ever go beyond recommendations?  

 

Two years ago I was sitting in the main room listening to a talk about ethics in design. In this edition, two years later and in the same room, here we go again. For how interesting it always is to listen to different people’s perspectives on the topic, I couldn’t do but noticing that in the meanwhile conversations about ethical design are still where they used to be, meaning they haven’t really moved beyond a set of general recommendations about aspects to take into account. So the question is: will they ever?

 

  • The measurement tension

 

From these two days, it emerged really clearly that nowadays everybody is busy measuring the tangible and mostly the intangible (yes, against all odds even More Than Metrics has fallen into the measuring trap), yet everybody is still struggling to prove the value of service design and having troubles showing that we are actually able to bridge concepts to implementation.

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A snapshot from a session of SXC18

  • Many in distress make the sorrow less

 

300 people is not a huge number. However, the audience at SXC18 was a very specific crowd of passionate people who are deeply involved in practicing and advocating for service design, from an organisational to a a global level. To this extent, the fact that that the service design community might not be enormous, but that on the other hand is very active, collaborative and dedicated was a good reminder. No matter how challenging our journey as practitioners can be, it made me feel like we are all allies in driving a disruptive, powerful mindset change.  

 

(For, With, By) People

How to design work

Last week I had a change to participate to a full day and very interesting seminar co-hosted by Pisku-project and NewWOWCrafting -project. The event was held at the Aalto University Design Factory that was described as a sandbox that is open for testing and learning goals.

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Organisation consultants Annika Ranta and Matti Hirvanen, Humap.

Facilitators, quite skilled ones if I may add, were from Humap, which is a consulting company that creates new ways of doing strategic development. They offer small and courageus experiments that helps organizations grow into great results. Digital strategic development and redesigning the organization’s shared knowledge is at the core of Humap operation.

In the beginning the facilitators introduced us to digital co-creation space called Howspace. It was fast to work together with this platform and it quickly gave us visual information about our common responses.

 

 

I enjoyed the fact that we all were able to contribute fast and the questions were well thought. Easy to answer. In addition to the survey, there was also opportunity to discuss the topics on the go and the facilitators also added remarks and questions to the wall. It made sure that all the participants were actually able to co-create and contirubute to the common subject at hand.

 

Work crafting in Finnish companies

After the introduction and warm up the project managers and a reseacher opened up and explained the two projects goals and implementations. The aim of the NewWoW project is to offer information and insight on how people working in a mobile and multi-locational manner craft their working time, work habits and the various workspaces they use. This part of the NewWoW project will focus on people working at microenterprises and small and medium sized enterprises, as these groups are the most likely to individually make use of the benefits offered by mobile work in a manner that is healthy and safe. The goal of the project is to identify the practices of working time and workspace management crafted by employees involved in multi-locational work in order to balance their own resources with the demands of the job, thereby improving the well-being of the employees and the productivity of their work. In addition, the project aims to combine this information with co-creation methods in order to develop and try out modern methods for crafting work and to prepare coaching materials on the subject matter.

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Howspace view.

Project managers explained that there are three different perspectives for work crafting. Work tasks, which might be the most common one. How much one has work, how demanding work is, is there support, what actually is the work one does. I believe that the two latter ones are less explored topics: Work relations and work cognitions. These two try to reveal the social aspect of the work. Who one works with, how much they collaborate, who belongs to the work community, what is the meaning of work. Work crafting is developing the work through and by the workers themselves.

In the following moments the project managers from both projects guided us through the methods they are using and what the results have been so far. The work crafting methods are often in indivial methods, so it is good to ask how the organisation can support in the process. What kind of collaborative rules work places can develops and what kind of different time structures are needed for the work? In addition to operative time that measures the time to complete the main task, it is also important to realise the time for reflection and social interactions because these create collaborate learning and trust in the works places.

In the panel discussion following, there was a lot of good examples of small companies that have already been doing work crafting. It means designing the workload, workspaces and mutual work habits together.

 

Adapting to automation

After the lunch future reseacher and certified business coach Ilkka Halava guided us swiflty through the problems in the modern working world. According to Mr.Halava, the biggest challenges are in the understanding. We should end the structural wastage and start taking the pragmatic steps towards the solutions. He said that at the moment the change in the work is automating everything dull, dirty and dangerous to robotics so that in the future most essential work skills are in emphatetic interaction. The value is in the interaction and it is important to understand and foresight, This is a great place for design thinking.

 

The last activity for the day was to collaborate in groups and discuss about work time, work space and work habits. Great discussion and I truly enjoyed working with the people in my group.

 

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I want to write forth about the top three learnings from this seminar. Firstly, the seminar reminded me that there a alot of talented and enthusiastic people who are doing research and development regarding ocuupational health. I believe that designing work is important because work changes just like people and consumers behavior. As the services provided are more user oriented, I stronly believe that the work also needs to be crafted along the way. Secondly the days agenda showed me how good tools help you facilitate a workshop and how people can be motivated to be more inspirational. Third, but not the least reminder was that your own occupational healt is important and that is something you can desing yourself.

 

The author Siru Sirén is MBA student in Futures Studies and Customer-Oriented Services in Laurea UAS// Licenced social service professional

 

More info and ideas:

https://newwow.turkuamk.fi/in-english/

https://www.humap.com/en/

https://www.howspace.com

 

 

DASH 2018 – a walk-through

I had the pleasure of being a participant in this year’s DASH event. If someone doesn’t know what DASH is, it’s Europe’s largest design hackathon organized by a great team of volunteers and professionals. Aaltoes is a big part of organizing DASH as well as many other partners. DASH is not just an individual event, because this year they have also organized a couple of cool seminars before the actual hackathon.

The prep

The whole shebang with the main event kicked off in the prep event on september 29th.  Juska J. Teittinen gave us a great shove in the right direction with his speech on design and the design process.

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We also got to hear which challenges we would be attending and I was super excited to be selected in EA’s game design challenge. My not so secret dream is to someday land an awesome job in the gaming industry, so this was a good start to learning more.

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EA’s challenge was not an easy one though, because they wanted us to create a new category in the mobile games market or come up with a mobile game that would meet the needs of an underserved audience. We had the research period of approximately two weeks to look into the design problem and find information to help us solve it before meeting our teams on the first day of DASH.

DASH, day 1

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Before meeting our teams and starting work on friday we listened to an awesome opening speech about designing for the future and the challenges we as designers face with the climate change and all of these big questions hanging over everyone’s head. We have the responsibility to start taking our designs towards more humanity-centered solutions.

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Finally time to meet the team. We had an awesome and diverse team of 5 people. Two of the guys were studying computer science at Aalto, one guy was studying game design and other cool things in Aalto, I was studying for my MBA in digital services at Laurea and the other female besides myself was studying vehicle design in Lahti. We instantly hit it off great and had a relaxed atmosphere amongst the team during the weekend.

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On Friday we spent a good amount of time getting to know each other and building up our team spirit. The rest of the time was spent going through thoughts and notions people had found during the research period and starting the ideation based on that. We were pretty scattered with our ideas on the first day, just freely throwing thoughts around and trying to map them out under some kind of headers to get some ounce of clarity.

DASH, day 2

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On Saturday one of our team members had woken up with a clear idea on what would be a cool concept that would meet the needs of an underserved audience. To kick the day off right and get some focus we took the time to go through the top grossing and best selling genres on PC/Console/Mobile and see what the mobile market could pick up from the other platforms. We ended up with the survival genre and amongst the team was also noted that Little big planet-type DIY games were yet to make their big break on mobile (well, Minecraft is kind off diy-typey). So based on those two genres we did the crazy 8 ideation technique, which means that all team members came up with 8 ideas in 8 minutes on both genres. Then we placed our votes on which ideas we found most interesting.

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After talking with the mentors from EA we decided to make a mash up of some ideas from both the DIY and survival genres and also develop further the idea of a DIY storytelling game one of our team members had. After further development within the team on the two ideas we placed a final vote and decided on the idea of a storytelling DIY game based on its uniqueness.

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After deciding on our winning idea each team member started working towards the pitching taking advantage of their individual strengths. This part really rolled smoothly since one team member took initiative in making the prototype, our artist started working on the concept art and logo and the rest of us divided time on working with the pitch materials, the materials for our design process and contents for the prototype.

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We heard a really helpful speech about pitching your ideas on Saturday and that eased our minds because we had a clear check list to follow when preparing our materials. I also wanted to get good tips for future reference, because pitching is something I think everyone could use learning.

DASH, day 3

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So come sunday morning we were well on our way to finishing our concept. I had the honor of pitching our design to the judges from EA. I had three minutes to go through our material and Izzan had two minutes to show the judges our prototype and we did great! Right on time and had good feedback on our pitch and on the unique approach we had to mobile gaming.

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We didn’t end up winning our challenge, but we were happy with the concept we created and the feedback given by the good folks at EA both on the pitching day and even afterwards. Thank you team Conte, thank you EA for the challenge and mentoring and thank you all the folks behind DASH for creating this awesome event.

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Reflections

What would I do differently or what were the main takeaways from my very first hackathon

  1. Do your research – make use of the time between the prep event and the actual event to really dig deep on the challenge so you can start off right away with the insights
  2. Use ideation techniques – brainstorming is great, but to make sure you come out with something tangible use techniques from service design or any other good resource
  3. Focus on the problem – each step of the design process should take you closer to solving the right problem for the right focus group, never lose sight on your challenge
  4. Practice the pitch – make sure your materials are clear and cohesive so that they best support your pitch. Choose a person who is a natural speaker to present the idea
  5. Polish the prototype – make sure your concept is the best possible representation of the final product

Author, Laura Manninen

Practise, practise, practise.

Michihito Mizutani from Siili Solutions held a short introduction to service design as a part of Design Track in School of Startups. Instead of inclusive theory lesson, he kept the workshop more hands on. His work history is strongly related to user experience and service design. Currently he is facilitating co-creation design workshops in different subfields such as Internet of Things, augmented reality, service design processes.

I enjoyed about having the opportunity to get hands on experience on different kinds of tools. I believe that practise is important in order to learn design process methods and facilitating workshops related in the matter. I also felt more confident after the workshop. Mizutani used a climbing metaphor to explain design process. You have a starting point and a goal where you want to go. The process happens in between and there is the work.

 

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The content of the workshop was well presented. After forming groups it was time to find a problem, create outcome (tomorrow headline) and between we used tools to solve the problem and figured out ways to illustrate and test the ideas. The problem ideating was well thought: first we all thought by ourselves general problems in everyday life and wrote them down to post it notes. After that we collected problems, clustered them and used three votes each to determine the ones that would proceed in the process. Common problems that got most votes were chosen to be worked with in teams. The reason I think problem ideating was well implemented was the level of work. Having common grounds helps the team to work with the solution. General identification is important because the team needs to be on the same page. In that sense problem finding was a good excerise.

 

Using tomorrow headlines, SAP scenes and Marvel POP for prototyping was good practise because you need to know the tools you use. It migh have been good to have a little bit more introduction to the tools, since some of us were using them for the first time. In order to use tools efficiently in short period time would require a short introduction to principles so that working would be more smooth.

 

 

For me the workshop gave opportunity to also reflect my skills as a facilitator and a member of a team. For example, I noticed that my team members had a little difficulty in defining the tomorrow headline in unison and what kind of prototype we would create. I tried to focus staying neutral and help teammates to collaborate. Some people have hard time to give up their initial idea when collaborating and co-creating. Making sure everyone gets heard isn’t easy, and I wanted to practise that also. It might have been good if the facilitator would have time to see each groups working process more. There were eight teams of three people going through the design process, which is a lot to juggle alone.

That juggling leads me to my key learnings when facilitating service design process. This workshop reminded me of my other course, where I’m currently planning and later executing a workshop. Some of these thing scame from this workshop and others are ideas that originated later. Firstly: timing. Timing is crucial factor for me when facilitating a design workshop. Having adequate time for all the steps in process ensures good results. Plannig tables according to aquired team sizes ready before the workshop, helps people to set up in the right places right away, so suffling tables around would’t be nececcary. In the beginning the whole group also might need support when narrowing down the options. For example  clustering might be done by facilitator to make things smooth. Clear instructions on diffecent phases are important, and I believe it is handy to leave them on display when working starts. People tend to forget easily.

For me it makes sense, that when organizing a design workshop, it might be a good idea to have two persons present. Then you have two sets of eyes and hands to help teams to work efficiently. Some teams need help from the facilitator in order to move forward. Having two people facilitating gives opportunity to keep everything in order: clear instructions, support for the teams, timing, handing out supplies etc. Nothing is more frustrating than running out of time just before it is time to present your results to the other participants. That would leave the workshop incomplete.

More info and ideas:

https://www.siili.com

http://www.servicedesigntools.org/tools/14

https://experience.sap.com/designservices/approach/scenes

https://marvelapp.com/pop/

 

The author Siru Sirén is MBA student in Futures Studies and Customer-Oriented Services in Laurea UAS// Licenced social service professional

Two different solution spaces

 

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As a part of School of Startups, Toni Perämäki from Valohai wanted to show us a structured way of finding customers via Lean Startup method. The one way of ideating is to build, measure and learn in a cycle. The key question in Lean Startup is: Do I have a problem worth solving? One idea is to make a list of problems (3-5) that your idea would be solving. You need to think many sectors in the beginning of the process. These include reviewing the customer pain, considering the size of the market and is it reachable. Also you need to think technical feasibility: are you able to build your product/service?

Even though Toni was telling about customer discovery through Lean Startup methology, I was able to find a lot of similarity to Design Thinking. First of all, they both are used in innovation processes to create something new. Iteration is a key action in both methods. Design process is always about iteration when building products or services. The Build-Measure-Learn feedback loop in Learn Startup is operating solemnly in the solution space in order to create Minimum Viable Products. That loop is very similar to Design Thinking prototypes and testing. They both collect feedback.

Understanding customers is crucial in both points of views. Who are the customers that the idea would help? In this part Toni urged us used user personas and value proposition canvas to help you understand the motivation and also the gain and pain of customers. These both are methods used in Design Thinking. User personas are based on fictional characters whose profile gathers up the features of an existing social group. In this way the personas assume the attributes of the groups they represent: from their social and demographic characteristics, to their own goals, challenges, behaviour and backgrounds. Value Proposition Canvas is a simple way to understand your customers needs, and design products and services they want. It works in conjunction with the Business Model Canvas and other strategic management and execution tools and processes.

 

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Value Proposition Canvas

 

In order of validating your concept Toni adviced us to think of ways of testing idea before prototyping or having a ready product. Good ways are storytelling and demos. Also used in Design Thinking.

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About customer understanding

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Toni introduced us to few (many) rules that I find useful when trying to understand customers. When gathering information, don’t use surveys. Surveys are too structured and it’s not a dialog. Also don’t use focus groups. People tend to change their opinion due to external influence. You don’t want people to follow some strongheahed persons ideas under group pressure.

Don’t ask what they want. The idea is to experience and understand the problem. Don’t go in alone. You get more insight of the problem at hand when comparing gathered information. Select neutral location. People need to feel comfortable. Use pen and paper to make notes. It it important to document results but having a lapotop between you and customer is not a good idea.

 

More info and ideas:

https://valohai.com

http://www.servicedesigntools.org

https://strategyzer.com/canvas/value-proposition-canvas

https://www.boardofinnovation.com/blog/2017/07/18/lean-startup-versus-design-thinking/

 

The author Siru Sirén is MBA student in Futures Studies and Customer-Oriented Services in Laurea UAS// Licenced social service professional

(Lights, camera,) ACTION!

 

On a rainy Tuesday I attended School of Startup hosted by The Shortcut. This weeks theme was Design and there was a lot of workhops related. Idea of the track is to wake up design mind and skills through design methods. There will be other post(s) coming about the design week. This workshops topic was Behaviour Design by Ashwin Rajan. In the beginning Rajan started with reminding us that design thinking process isn’t linear.

 

The spirit of design thinking consist of many things.

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Design process

 

Curiosity is one of the key factors. You need to want to learn and create new things and understand the underlining things in designing process. You also need to endure discomfort because moving in new territory means that there is not much to rely on. Some times your ideas are not welcomed so you need to accept rejection. That is also why you need to fail-forward.

When synthesising I believe you get better results because the issue/task is reviewed from many points of viewes. Finding answers while being inclusive gives better knowledge. Continuing topics ”Yes, and..” gives you more information. Learning with your hands is essential, thats why many of the design prosesses include sketching and prototyping as tools. You need to be action-driven and do things to go forward.

”Experience cannot be measured. Behaviour can.”

– Ashwin Rajan

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Ashwin Rajan (photo from LinkedIn profile).

 

According to Rajan, “behaviour is action on digital technology”. There are different types of action, some are seeking information (serve information) and other actions are doing tasks (give tools). When you are hungry, you search for food. If for example Wolt advertises ”Hungry? Wolt” it straightforwadly implifies you that in order to satisfy you need you need to take action. An action towards them. In the future it will be easier to do the same thing because it is already familiar to you. That makes sense when you think of learning by doing and how doing things changes the way you think.

The core consepts of behaviour design are important to understand because those factors determine how well you can design a product or service. Behaviour design explains customers and users as psychologal and social beings. It is interesting how everything is sort of linked together as long as it is humans that are using the service. Even though behavioral design consists more than three core consept, Rajan decided to introduce us to the following ones:

Positive Self-Concept helps us to build identity and contuinity in our lives. We want to feel good so we seek for experiences that gives us that feeling. And also we avoid decicions that make us feel bad. Bounded rationality in decicion making process creates many suboptimal desicions simply because we use shortcuts and are biased when it comes to what we want.

Cognitive dissonance happens when situation conflicts with our attitude, perception or belief. I wonder, if information bubble is partially about cognitive dissonance? We generelly don’t accept information that is in conflict with your worldview. Or is it more about keeping positive self-concepts in order not to challenge our identity? Creating action is a way of solving cognitive dissonance. Either you change the way you think or believe or you change your behavior.

Motivation always has a direction. You go towards something or seek for avoidance. The source for motivation can be intrinsic or extrinsic. This reminded me of my other course in which I’m studying about inner motivation. Same principles work in different contexts. Understanding motivation truly helps you affect things. Either way, there is two ways to change behavior when motivating people. You align action with existing motivation or you carefully create dissonance while restoring positive self-consept.

 

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Ashwin Rajan has a great way of explaining things and concepts. I truly enjoyed while he was explaining how people react to different types of actions and how behavioral design provides tools to extend or change human behaviour. In a way, it seems relatable to psychoterapy prosess. You understand and create a behavioral intervention. After the workshop I felt inspired, motivated and hungry for more information. The key learning for me was how important is to understand the psychology of users or customers in order to learn and make better processes.

 

The author Siru Sirén is MBA student in Futures Studies and Customer-Oriented Services in Laurea UAS// Licenced social service professional

 

More info and ideas:

https://theshortcut.org/school-of-startups/

https://www.fabricbd.com

What about brick and mortar?

We are living in a world where change is present, and it is forcing many industries to redefine or reshape themselves in the near future. Of all industries retailing as we know it today is for sure facing one of the biggest challenges through its existence. People´s buying behaviour and preferences are rapidly changing and, one of the biggest questions up in the air is what will be the future of brick and mortar stores?

In the Laurea´s Masterclass study unit called Design Thinking facilitated by a quest Professor Katja Tschimmel we familiarised ourselves with the design thinking concept and the Mindshake Innovation and Design Thinking Model called Evolution 62 (E.62). Practical exercises done during the 2 contact session days in September 2018 deepened participants´ understanding of the process and different tools, and it all also expanded my thinking beyond classroom walls. Since the E.62 model and related toolkit were developed in organisational context to promote Design Thinking and to show how Design Thinking tools can be applied in practice, could Design Thinking and its tool pack in general also be used for reshaping retail, more precisely brick and mortar stores?

 

E62 model

Mindshake Innovation and Design Thinking Model (Katja Tschimmel, 2018)

 

In his book called Design Thinking for Strategic Innovation (2013), Idris Mootee offers Design Thinking lens as an approach to various business challenges. He does not stop there but presents a reader a concrete list of design thinking solutions that are matched to specific business challenges. I must say that I am usually little sceptic about these kinds of lists since they tend to oversimplify matters, but in this particular case, I think he managed to make his point clear: business problems can be approached with empathy, creativity, foresight, and last but not least consumer-centricity.

 

The list

Business challenges with matching Desing Thinking Solutions (Idris Mootee 2013)

As I see it, disruption in retail business is mostly due to the fast and dramatic changes in the way individuals nowadays prefer to shop and retail´s inability to adapt to these needs (quick enough). Consumers of today like to play the game with their own rules and they want to decide how, when and where they shop. From retailers´ perspective constantly developing new technologies and all the possibilities they offer to business make everything even more complex and the future is anything but easily predicted. Essentially, it is all about the many individuals with individualistic needs and wants and retailers´ inability to predict the future.

The name of Mindshake E.62 model refers to six Es, six phases, one of which is called Empathy. As mentioned before consumers of today are more individualistic than ever and they like to set the rules, so we should study them and their rules. Empathy phase is all about deep and thorough customer (user) understanding. The E.62 tools that can be used in this phase for gaining the understanding are for example Empathy Map, User Journey Map, Persona Map and Cards (Personas), Field Observation and last but not least Interview. The idea is to be able to step into the customers´ shoes and understanding the wider context. Interview on the other hand, is an efficient tool to discover what people really need and desire. In general, the importance of this phase cannot be overly emphasized: in today´s world it is all about knowing your customer.

Predictability is also one of the business challenges Idris Mootee (2013) describes in his book. He states: “By studying, developing, and visualizing forward-looking scenarios, an organization can equip and prepare itself for tomorrow”. He continues: “Foresight is an iterative and cumulative learning process that employs design thinking tool kit.” In this case, according to him, the tool kit includes Weak Signal Scanning, Weak Signal Processing, Weak Signal Amplification, Context Mapping and Scenario Development.

Earlier in my blog post I criticised Mootee of oversimplifying things, and now I have to admit that I have committed the same crime when categorising all retail under one umbrella. Retailing, of course, encases a huge number of different sectors – grocery, electronics, clothing, home decoration and home furnishing just to mention few – with sector-specific challenges, segmentations, buying preferences and so on, and cannot or should not be treated as one entity. Personally, my passion lies within home furnishing and physical customer experience i.e. in brick and mortar, and I am itching to dig deeper into this topic when I proceed in my Service Innovation and Design studies. Please, stay tuned.

Further reading:
Liedtka, Jeanne. 2018. Why Design Thinking works. Harvard Business Review.
Mootee, Idris. 2013. Design Thinking for Strategic Innovation
Tschimmel, Katja. 2018. E.62 Mindshake – Innovation & Design Thinking Model
Tschimmel, Katja. 2015. Evolution 62 Design Thinking Cards