August 4, 2017

What is Digital Transformation? And why culture matters?

Everyone is talking about digital transformation: the news are filled with data and stats around massive investments in digital technology and in the need to transform businesses.

The IDC report 2017 estimates that worldwide spending on digital transformation technologies will grow to more than $2.1 trillion in 2019, while a Forrester study says that 57% of organisations say that implementing key digital technologies is critical to enabling their digital business. Nevertheless a Sloan Review Survey shows that respondents rated “current IT systems” as the third biggest obstacle to achieving digital transformation.

The relation between digital, IT systems, and digital transformation is still blurred in most cases. Today digital transformation is far too often confused with Digitalization or with Digitization with a strong focus on technologies or platform. In many cases, organisations still believe that digital transformation is achieved by implementing a single platform that could magically transform the whole organisation.

Unfortunately that is wrong and it’s misleading.

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March 10, 2017

The Customers Experience’s BlindSpot

customer-loyalty

The news these days reports that poor CX is costing UK companies £37 bn, with retail and telcos losing the most in 2016. Ironically, the sectors who lose the most, according to a recent study by KPMG Nunwood, are also those which invest the most and get the best improvements in CX.

This looks like a paradox, but it is not.

Organisations have realised the importance of customer experience and they are moving fast into this space. Terms like Customer journey mapping, touchpoints, or ecosystems are words that abound in most business and strategy related conversations. Continue reading

February 20, 2017

Millennials are going beyond the individualistic BabyBoomers

img_20170216_182627964I have been reading a lot about Millennials, this new breed stemming from the digital age.

Were these Millennials so much different?

I, as a GenX, could easily relate to what I was reading and did not realise the real gap until I had the opportunity to directly compare the ways of thinking, the value systems, attitudes, and mental models, of Millennials and Baby Boomers.

The opportunity came through some workshops I facilitated to explore how customers felt about brands and their experience as consumer and shopper.

I decided to run the workshop using Lego Serious Play, a facilitation method that asks participants to build metaphorical models with Lego bricks to answer specific challenges and questions.

The method is based on narratives and storytelling, and participants are the only one who hold the interpretative keys to decode the metaphors and stories kept in their model. After building their model to answer the question, participants share their stories and their models with everyone, explaining the meaning of their models and sharing their views and perspectives on the issues I was investigating.

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May 20, 2016

The relationship between Business & Design: the Lego Serious Play case

The relationship between business and design has gone through deep changes in the past years. We are assisting at a convergence between business and design lead by the formalisation and adoption of design thinking and the revelation that good design is good business: many approaches from design have migrated into business and management enhancing the potential of business focused companies.

But there is a very special case of a method that was developed as an answer to a business need that has successfully migrated to design practices.

This is the case of Lego Serious Play: developed from the ’90s to improve the quality of strategic development meetings it has now been adopted by design companies to enhance creative processes, collaboration among different department, promote co-creation and participative design that includes customers, users, designers, and stakeholders.

Presented at #CassCreativity Seminar series on May 4th 2916, you can watch the whole Storyfy from this Link.

March 30, 2016

Why Digital Transformation has nothing to do with Digital

Why Digital Transformation has nothing to do with Digital

Why Digital Transformation has nothing to do with Digital

IDC predicts that 2016 will be shaped by digital transformation, with availability, capabilities and business needs being the biggest related issues IT leadership will face.

With this announcement comes a flurry of buzz: from the media, articles about the latest platforms, apps, software and other tools that will lead digital transformation; from companies, vague references to ‘digital’ in press releases; and from marketing departments, campaigns touting CTO and CMO initiatives investing in the latest technologies, branded as the ultimate solution to deploy ‘digital transformation.’

Let’s take a step back for a second. Continue reading

March 7, 2016

The responsibility of UX: generate Value. But what is Value?

Markets are conversations

Markets are conversations (C) P. Bertini

One of the biggest challenges today, is to deliver meaningful experiences that create value to brands and are valuable for the users. As UX and CX professionals we are today responsible for the value generation processes, because an experience is created by the understanding of what does value mean for all those involved in the experience: the brand and the users.

I recently gave a speech at UX Denmark 2016, the theme was trust & emotion. If trust is the willingness to take risks, where does trust come from and how can it be useful in the UX field? Trust is generated by interaction, there is no trust unless the parts have had – or are in the conditions of having – an interaction that can build and support a relationship that generates positive emotions.

Interaction generates trust and relationships, and relationships generate experiences, and experiences are the real value in the experience economy.

Therefore, if relationships are the (metaphorical) places where value is generated between the interacting parts, then the only way to be in a relationship is through an EXPERIENCE.

Experience is generated by experiences, and the design of future experiences requires imagination and the understanding of the perception of the present experiences through narratives and storytelling of the past.

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February 12, 2016

When NextGen UX and embodied cognition play seriously with Lego

Recently I have spent time reading and considering the future of UX and how recent research are affecting our understanding of our cognitive experiences and our perception.

I still had no chance to organise my thoughts into a decently structured article and explain what I see happening in the future. But if you are keen to know more, Marek Pawlowsky, the man behind MEX, invited me to talk about what’s boiling… And the result is a long chat (approx from min 40′) about Lego Serious Play, principles of embodied cognition and evolving research methods for the next generation of digital experiences.

November 20, 2015

UX delivers strategy in action

Screen Shot 2015-11-20 at 13.14.25The UX practices and mindsets are evolving. It’s becoming clear that UX is not just about user validation, pixels, or wireframes. That’s the old paradigm. UX is much more. UX permeates the whole design process and the overall underlying strategy. Because UX is strategy in action.

A little bit of history: do you remember when…?

For many years UX has been dominated by the design/wireframe and testing paradigm, and this is not a surprise.

Although stemming from HCI and UCD, the real turning point in the dissemination of a user centred culture was early 2000, when Jakob Nielsen and Donald Norman have highlighted and explained the importance of usability and good design.

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October 25, 2015

The UX mindset: a quest for values and meanings

UX mindset

UX is a mindset that connects strategy and design through the understanding of what is valuable and meaningful both for the users and the organisations. And in such a scenario, research is the link that allows organisation strategies to become experiences.

In an experience economy the value of a product or a service is not anymore limited to a price tag, but it is determined by the quality of the experiences delivered. This implies that organisations need to shift their focus from the product to embrace the intangible experiential elements and shape those elements to support the wider strategy through an effective and meaningful engagement with the users. Continue reading

July 5, 2015

From bricks to innovation

Unleash playfulness

Unleash playfulness

Lego bricks are a fascinating tool. Mostly considered a creative and engaging toy, they are much more than that. What is a toy that enhances children’s creativity and imagination, becomes a tool to enhance understanding and explore opportunities in business.

There is an increasing interests in anything that is LEGO: from the business case of a company that employed co-creation and changed a negative trend in the ’90s into a global success.

And there are an increasing number of applications that are exploiting the simplicity of systemic bricks that can be combined in countless ways and gain a number of different meanings based on individual narratives and stories.

Bricks are natural story maker tool: children imagine adventures while playing and building objects. And so do adults, although they may need some help. Continue reading

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