November 15, 2014
Facilitation’s thorny issues
Facilitating is an art. it requires a mix of personality traits, like the ability to guide and lead a group, a set of knowledge about group dynamics, psychology, and techniques.
A facilitator is usually an external member, someone who enters into a group and guides them through a journey to get to a goal. The design part is the key: a facilitator always needs to know exactly where the group is, the next steps, the timing of every activity and include any eventual recovery plan in case something does not goes according to the plans.
Facilitator’s personality is another essential factor: the facilitator needs to be able to engage and lead the group, mitigate power games and dominant personalities and to involve shy and silent people without putting pressure.
All is clear, until the facilitator faces a challenge: facilitate within a group they know well.
August 9, 2014
cocreation & UX
In the past few years, we have assisted to a sort of divorce between users and organisations: technology has bought in a wide range of new behaviours and opportunities that companies are not always able to follow or predict. Most innovative projects fail because it’s difficult to fully understand what’s in the users’ heads (Leadbeater 2008) and the big changes society is facing, with a shift from products to experiences makes traditional UX approaches difficult, time-consuming and less effective.
To reduce complexity and make the overall internal and external process simpler and leaner, UX today can take advantage of collaborative approaches that involve and engages stakeholders, users, and designers in a creative and participative activity, namely co-creation. Continue reading
July 19, 2014
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
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.
June 20, 2014
© 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
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.
June 9, 2014
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.
May 30, 2014
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 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.
May 15, 2014
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.