July 19, 2014

Innovate through conversations

Reykjavik - © P. Bertini

The road to change - © P. Bertini

Markets are ever more conversations and the role of the user has dramatically changed in the past decade, shifting from  a passive unknown being, into active part of the conversation.

We live in convivial times where technology has enhanced new practices and new opportunities for organisations and users to talk, to understand their mutual points of view and share knowledge, meanings and values.

Nevertheless, there has been a divorce between users and organisations and much of those conversations are today limited to the final stage of product and service design. Rather than taking fully advantage of the potential of co-creation, and engage users in conversations and creative exercises, today users are involved only in the very final stage, when it comes to validate an idea that has been developed using traditional approaches. Continue reading

June 29, 2014

Co-creation: In search of the wrong answers

Another world is possible © P. Bertini 2011

Another world is possible

We Live in industrialised times: everything is following the strict industrial standards set over 150 years ago by the industrial revolution.

Mass production and the need to have standardised process, where one fit all, created a society that has tried to convince us that there is one way to do things right, that there’s one solution to a problem, one right perspective, one direction.

Multiple directions, different choices, and different paths would have been detrimental to an industrial society, which needed conformance and standards to deliver its goods and create the cultural and economic system we are all imbued with today.

To reach the largest number of people, everything has been industrialised: processes, production, creativity, and education.

Continue reading

June 20, 2014

The collective mind of Serious Play

In good company Southbank © Patrizia Bertini

 © Patrizia Bertini

In the past few years, the number of articles published around Lego Serious Play is hugely increased.

The initial theories developed in the mid ’90s, 20 years ago, by Johan Ross and Bart Viktor and put into its current shape by Robert Rasmussen, are today converging and mingling with new trends and emerging  needs.

What was supposed to simply be a language, communication tool, problem solving methodology, based on the belief that everyone can contribute to the discussion, the decisions, and the outcome, it has become a tool for exploring, both a crinkly and torn treasure map to be completed with the imagination of the facilitator and the participants, and a hammer to deconstruct and construct new opportunities. Continue reading

June 12, 2014

Experiencing LEGO Serious Play: the point of view of a participant

LEGO Serious Play P. Bertini

I recently had the pleasure of facilitating a LEGO SeriousPlay workshop at Foolproof with Hot Source members. One of the participant, Marek Pawlowski, shared his experience.

As a facilitator, used to describe the method, it was refreshing and an immense pleasure to know that he experienced exactly what I always described when I talk about the power and benefits of LSP. Thank you @Marek for such an amazing post!

Improvement requires change, whether that happens gradually through iteration or in big leaps through sudden sparks of creativity. This is true of improving anything, from companies to individual products. It’s something I think about a lot in the context of the MEX initiative, which is, at its heart, about helping people to improve digital experiences. We are always looking for new ways to equip people to make good changes to the user experience of the products they’re designing.

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June 9, 2014

Participative creativity

Creativity © P.Bertini

Creativity © P.Bertini

[Excerpt. The full article is available on Editorial IV. Many thanks to Joseph McKeating]

Crowdsourcing, open innovation, co-creation, and co-production all have become buzzwords that are often used interchangeably.

However, these words identify different processes that have a few key differences, but also a key similarity: they are all innovation and creativity-driven activities.

The outcome of all of these activities are products or services, and all of these initiatives focus on the engagement of customers and people outside of the organization.

Then similarities stop and the differentiating factors come into play.

Continue reading

May 30, 2014

User requirements & Co-creation: an Agile approach

 

Co-creation: A Lego Serious Play Workshop

Co-creation: A Lego Serious Play Workshop

User centred design (UCD) is an approach that considers the user as the central point of any design process. UCD projects traditionally implied a preliminary study of users to collect their needs and requirements: a lot of efforts were made to understand users’ expectations, behaviours, frustrations, problems and generally the research approaches involved interviews, ethnographic studies, questionnaires, surveys, or focus groups.
Collected data would then be analysed by experts who would eventually come up with user requirements: a list of issues that designers should take into consideration during their design and implementation phase. Continue reading

May 22, 2014

Co-creation: the power of conversation [4 of 4]

Co-creation in action

Co-creation in action

Co-creation: who should be involved?

When saying all stakeholders we do not refer to the largest majority of users available, as they can be reached with crowdsourcing initiatives. It’s not about quantity, but quality. As several studies from early ’90s have demonstrated, involving lead users, who are those individuals that have needs that are advanced with respect to an important marketplace trend and expect to benefit significantly by obtaining a solution to those needs (Herstatt & Von Hippel 1992) can have a significant impact on the results, proving that quantity is not synonymous of quality.

Continue reading

May 15, 2014

Co-creation: the power of conversations [3 of 4]

Prill's crowd sourcing campaign

Prill’s crowd sourcing campaign

Media & Co-creation

Looking into the media, we find a number of articles claiming that companies are applying co-creation; yet, looking closer would reveal that those initiatives are something slightly different.

Coca-cola is said to be using co-creation a lot, but as David Moth (2012) on e-consultancy writes: “When Coca-Cola’s ad agencies ran out of ideas for a marketing brief, the company decided to turn to an online community to crowdsource some ideas”. So, what Coca-cola did, was an open call for ideas, asking the community to share individual ideas from where the company can dig for future inspiration. Coca-cola had over 3.600 submissions.

Continue reading

May 3, 2014

Co-creation: the power of conversations [2 of 4]

The Co-creation process © C. Bughi

The Co-creation process © C. Bughi

Co-creation Vs crowd creation

So, when looking back at what media often portrays as co-creation, the confusion becomes evident.

Co-creation is no co-production: many initiatives labelled as co-creation are actually co-production experiences, which are experiences where customers participate to the production and delivery of the product or service: the self-service checkouts at supermarkets are a typical example of co-production. One of the consequences of co-production is also known as the Ikea effect, that cognitive attitude that leads to an increased perception in value of objects customers have build by themselves, because of their involvement in the production phase.

Continue reading

May 3, 2014

Co-creation: the power of conversations [1 of 4]

The Cluetrain Manifesto - cover

The Cluetrain Manifesto

The beginning of the revolution: the Cluetrain Manifesto

Co-creation has become a very sexy world in the business news. Newspapers and magazines are full with inspiring titles, like 5 Co-creation Examples: E.ON, Coca-Cola, MTV, Tata Group & Heineken, 5 examples of how brands are using co-creationHow Coca-Cola uses co-creation to crowdsource new marketing ideas.

However, the understanding of this term is often blurred and organisations use the word co-creation to refer to many different things, which share one key concept: the involvement of users and the conversations between users and organisations.

Continue reading

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