Improv + Discovery = Satisfied Customers
How improvistational theatre techniques can improve your
discovery skills
T.K. Ho...
Safe harbor
Safe harbor statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995:
This presentation may contai...
In the next 44 minutes we want you to …
• Understand the basics of improv
• Learn how to apply improv during discovery
• P...
Steve Bobrowski
Principal Member Technical Staff
Customer Centric Engineering,
Technical Enablement
@sbob909
T.K. Horeis
Cloud and Industry Architect
@TKHoreis
Definition: Improv
… improvisation, unscripted theatre

o
N

an
pl

No safety net!!!

No
sc
rip

t
How does it work?
e
eat ers
Cr ct
ara
Ch

Cr
ea
te

ce n
ien tio
ud es
A g
ug
s

Who

Shared

What
%
%
3 2
3 2
7 5
7 5

Wh...
Party Quirks
An example of improv in action
Quirks for TK to discover
• Steve:
• Guest 2:
• Guest 3:
Clap louder & louder as
TK gets closer to
discovering our quirks
So, what’s the trick?
Rules

Practice

“Chance favors the prepared mind.“
- Louis Pasteur
What is Discovery?
Believe it or not, the original
concept came from the legal
profession.

quir
Re

ents
em

Determining ...
Why discovery is so important …
Good discovery = success

Bad discovery = problems
Good discovery
• Aligns vision & functionality
• Reduces risk
• Provides deeper insight
• Defines success clearly
• Identi...
Poor discovery
• Yields low adoption
• Creates cost/schedule overruns
• Increases extensibility problems
• Raises credibil...
The Basics

Somebody

Some
information
Something

Who
What
Where
When
Why
How
So how are improv & discovery related?

Team
Efforts
So how are improv & discovery related?
Exercises in incomplete information

.
So how are improv & discovery related?

Creativity
So how are improv & discovery related?

Agility & quick
adjustments

Agent Jones, Credit: The Matrix, 1999 Warner Bros.
Improv techniques to improve your discovery skills
Check yourr
Check you
agenda att
agenda a
the doorr
the doo

Yes,,
Yes
...
Yes, and
A demonstration of the technique
“Yes, and” … the MOST important rule of improv
Accept what’s given to you (the Yes)
Don’t deny reality
More about “Yes, and…”
“Our current system
“Our current system
works pretty well, so why
works pretty well, so why
are we ...
“No …”, the opposite of “yes, and …”
Yes,
Yes,
but, …
but, …

No, I I
No,
agree…
agree…

• Shuts down dialogue
• User’s do...
Yes, and
An exercise for you
The power of questions
A demonstration of the concept
The power of questions, the right questions
You have to put them in the right frame of mind to extract the
information you...
Tips for good questions

Do your homework
Tips for good questions

Learn their lingo,
don’t use yours

The number of database
The number of database
buffer gets is
...
Tips for good questions

Ask
high-stakes
questions
Tips for good questions
Ask open-ended
questions
Thoughtful
responses

Avoid too many Yes/No questions
Tips for good questions

Build deeper insight,
using follow-ups
Tips for good questions
Look for non-verbal cues
What kinds of questions should you avoid?
Don’t include
your opinion as
part of the
question
What kinds of questions should you avoid?
Don’t lead the witness
What kinds of questions should you avoid?
Avoid long or complex questions
Listening to understand,
not respond
A demonstration of the technique
Listening to understand, not respond
Listening is not about waiting for your chance to talk or contribute.
Listening to understand, not respond
Listening is not about waiting for your chance to talk or contribute.
I can’t wait to...
Listening to understand, not respond
Listening is not about waiting for your chance to talk or contribute.
Here comes
Stev...
Listening to understand, not respond
Listening is not about waiting for your chance to talk or contribute.
I really need t...
Listening to understand, not respond
Listening is not about waiting for your chance to talk or contribute.
REALLY!
REALLY!...
Remove distractions
External

Did II remember
Did remember
to …?
to …?

Internal

We could
We could
solve this
solve this
...
Keep your focus
Always ask yourself these 3 simple questions:

Do II need to
Do need to
clarify anything
clarify anything
...
Listening to understand,
not respond
An exercise for everyone
Paraphrase to validate
A demonstration of the technique
Paraphrase to validate
Repeat their message (as you understand it).

When?
Ah, II think II
Ah, think
understand.
understan...
Paraphrase to validate
An exercise for everyone
Be specific
A demonstration of the technique
Be specific
All my life, I always wanted to be
somebody. Now I see that I should
have been more specific.
-- Lily Tomlin
M...
Be specific
Do
• Choose powerful words
• Make it quantifiable
• Make it personal
Be specific

Don’t
• Use vague or flowery language
• Don’t overcomplicate
• Don’t ask for speculation
Be specific
An exercise for everyone
T.K. Horeis

Steve Bobrowski

Cloud and Industry Architect,
@TKHoreis

Architect Evangelist,
@sbob909
Improvisational Theatre Techniques Can Improve Your Discovery Skills
Improvisational Theatre Techniques Can Improve Your Discovery Skills
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Improvisational Theatre Techniques Can Improve Your Discovery Skills

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Have you ever had a project where you received some nasty surprises towards the end or after a deployment? Do your users or stakeholders complain that the solution isn't meeting their needs after it's delivered? Join us as we explore how the skills learned in improvisation can benefit the discovery that shapes your system's requirements and architecture. T.K. Horeis, a long-time veteran of the Chicago Improv community and Cloud / Industry Architect at Salesforce, along with Steve Bobrowski of Customer-Centric Engineering will guide you through tips to better listening, questioning, and observation that will help you catch those gotchas earlier in your project lifecycle. This session will be coupled with a fun workshop to help you put these new skills into action.

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  • Feedback
    NEED TO TRIM 5 MINUTES
    Make sure we do an example for each exercise – maybe a slide with the example
    Paraphrase to validate example up front
    Slide 39 – break up
    End summary slide – with 5 rules
    Reference book w/ exercises
    Get rid of wordy cartoon
    Use icon finder for graphics
    STEVE:
    Hello, and welcome to our session:
    Improv + Discovery = Satisfied Customers
    How improvisational theatre techniques can improve your discovery skills.
    How many of you have been to an improv show before? (show of hands)
    And how many have engaged in project discovery either as the person trying to figure out what to build or as a stakeholder?’
    Has that process always gone smoothly?
  • This is our Safe Harbor statement, which basically says that you should make your purchasing decisions based on our currently available product not any forward-looking statements we may make today.
  • STEVE: Ok, so what are we going to be doing in the next 40 minutes or so? Well let me tell you, this session is going to be a lot of fun and extremely valuable! Our hope is that you walk out of this room with some skills that help you communicate and work better with everyone you come in contact with. You’re going to leave here with a basic understanding of improv, and specifically, how using improv skills can really aid the process of discovery when you work with folks to implement your next Salesforce project. During the session, we’re going to demonstrate improv skills and everyone here is going to practice unscripted improv scenes with someone sitting next to you, maybe a stranger that’s going to be a new friend. So relax, get ready to laugh a little, and most of all, have some fun.
  • STEVE: So my name is Steve Bobrowski, ….
    Now from that background, you might gather than I’m no improv expert. But I’ve been studying improv from a master, who just happens to be today’s co-presenter. TK?
  • TK: My name is T.K. Horeis and I’m a Cloud and Industry Architect here at salesforce. However, I’m also a long-time improviser. I studied at Second City and with the late Del Close at ImprovOlympic eventually founding the nation’s first improvisation co-op, The Playground. Living in Chicago the past 18 years, I’ve had the opportunity to perform with and learn from a world’s top improvisers.
    I use those improv skills every day here at salesforce.
  • TK: So what is Improv?
    For those that haven’t Improv or Improvisation is a form of theatre where the performers are creating their performance on-the-fly.
    No script
    No plan
    Not net <sound of person falling>
    ------------------------
    Images
    People at desk – Powerpoint clip art
    Stage actor – Powerpoint clip art
    Wallenda high wire – public domain photo: source wikipedia
  • TK: You take an audience suggestion (and we’ve taken some from you already, and we’ll be taking more so don’t be shy)
    Create a world
    Create characters
    And a shared understanding (including language)
    That let’s the magic happen
    And before you know it, you know the
    Who
    What
    Where
    When
    Why
    How of that moment
    Images
    Austin Powers / Dr. Evil from Goldmember
    Suggestion box from Powerpoint clipart
    World from DoD public domain image
    Shared Understanding – self-created
    Arm w/ wand – from Powerpoint clipart
  • STEVE: So to make sure that everyone here has a good understanding of what improv is, let’s to a quick scene up here on stage with me, TK, and our two volunteers, Joe and Sally.
    So this exercise is called Party Quirks. And the scene that we’ll be acting out, unscripted of course, is a party.
    End at 5:30
  • STEVE: TK’s hosting the party. Thanks TK, hope you have some good food and drinks for us.
    Now me, Joe and Sally are guests. And we all have a different quirk. We might have a mental quirk, like being afraid of the dark, a physical quirk, like two left feet, or maybe, we’re just a famous person, someone living or dead, like George Washington.
    We are going to act out our parts, and TK has the tough part: he doesn’t know what those quirks are, and he has to figure it out all three in two minutes or less.
    Now it’s not 20 questions. We are all going to create a scene, on the fly, by having conversations amongst ourselves, and along the way, we’ll give TK some subtle hints. TK will apply his finely tuned improv skills to discover what those quirks are. As the audience, it’s your job to clap more loudly as TK gets close to guessing the quirk of a guest, all the while maintaining the integrity of the scene. Don’t shout out answers or anything like that, please.
    Ok, so the three of us all have our quirks. TK doesn’t know what they are, we just figured them out a few minutes ago. TK, go that blindfold on? Ok, here they are
  • STEVE: Ok, everyone out there, remember what these are, because I’m going to flip this slide in a second.
  • STEVE: Alright, and we’re ready to go to TK’s party.
    Ready TK?
  • STEVE: Great job TK. So why don’t you tell everyone some of the basics of improv + discovery.
    TK:
    Rules – And much like this scene our rules aren’t hard and fast. They’re more like guidelines that help to propel our scenes forward. And we’ll be discussing some of these rules in a minute.
    Practice – football analogy
    “Work from the top of your intelligence”
  • Make crisper
    Image:
    Umbrella: Powerpoint clip art
    TODO: Not sure what the umbrella represents or adds to the slide
    Legal discovery is wide-ranging and can involve any material which is "reasonably calculated to lead to admissible evidence." Notice I didn’t say relevant, because sometimes you don’t realize everything that’s relevant until later in the process.
    Requirements - Identify tasks to be completed, workflow, data to record, track, report, system/project constraints
    Personas - Understand key decision-makers, users, or user personas
    Vision – not just the vision of your project sponsor, but how do the end-users imagine that the new system will make their lives easier OR harder. Remember – no matter how well your system works, if no one uses it – it’s a failure.
    Domain - Learn about domain-specific information – Learn the lingo
    Success – what does success look like? For your executive sponsor? For your users? How do you measure it? How do you compare it to the current state?
  • TK: So why is discovery such a crucial process? Quite simply, the better discovery you do up front, the more likely your project will be successful and the less problems you will have. Let’s look at some characteristics of both good and bad discovery.
  • TK
  • TK
  • TK
    For each area of the solution, it boils down to this:
    Somebody
    Does something
    With some information
    YOU need to dig deeper to understand the Who, What, Where, When, Why, and How of these situations

    That way you can understand their story and write the next chapter. . (sounds familiar, right?) That’s exactly what improvisers do.
    So you can already start to see how improv and discovery are related. But there’s more.
    End at 7:30
  • TK
    Team efforts
    Exercise of dealing in incomplete information
    Require creativity
    Agility and quick adjustments
  • TK
    Team efforts
    Exercise of dealing in incomplete information
    Require creativity
    Agility and quick adjustments
    Image - Puzzle Krypt Credit: Wikipedia 2005 *Author: Muns
  • TK
    Team efforts
    Exercise of dealing in incomplete information
    Require creativity
    Agility and quick adjustments
  • TK - NEED TO BE CRISPER
    Team efforts
    Exercise of dealing in incomplete information
    Require creativity
    Agility and quick adjustments
  • TK – DON’T READ THE 5 THINGS
    Now we won’t have time today to cover all of the improv concepts that can help your discovery skills. Today we’re going to focus on 5 of them. So let’s start with “Yes, and”
  • T.K. and Steve will demonstrate a bad and good example of the Yes, And technique
    Bad
    Improv gun - denial
    Good
    Improv gun – agree
    End at 11:30
  • STICK TO THE SCRIPT
    TK: What does “Yes, and” mean?
    Accepting what’s given to you (the Yes) and building upon those ideas. It’s the best way to build trust and understanding. To foster collaboration.
  • TK: One thing I’ve learned from improv is that every contribution from your stakeholders is a gift!
    By acknowledging what’s given to you and then building on that (which during discovery is done with clarifying questions), you’re working together to build a shared understanding of a user’s wants, needs, pain-points.
    An important corollary is don’t deny the reality that your users live in.
    Respect their contributions. Then add a contribution of your own (the AND), by asking good follow-up questions. To get to the why behind their comments.
    This doesn’t mean that you have to agree with everything you hear in user discussions. But you’re there to build an understanding of users and processes. To discover, not judge.
  • TK – A little crisper
    Why is it so important?
    Because the opposite of yes is No. And you need to just say NO to no.
    No shuts down dialogue.
    It doesn’t respect user’s opinions or contributions to the discovery process.
    When you do, you may discover something the user or customer didn’t know they needed/wanted
    I also want to discuss some other linguistic gymnastics that I see all the time.
     Yes, but – which is just a fancy way of saying NO. It’s usually followed by the reasons why you can’t do something.
    And this one which is much more common than you would think. Listen for it in meetings.
    No, I agree… Hmmmm, think about that statement. Which is it? No or do you agree?
    Words matter – and our words often betray our subconscious.
    So purge these phrases from your discovery sessions. In fact, I’d go one step further. Purge them from your life.
  • Make sure I explain that Steve will be going through the audience to listen in on the excercises.
    We may include you so others can hear how it’s going
  • T.K. and Steve will demonstrate a bad and good example of The Power of Questions concept
    Bad
    Ask leading questions – For this mobile app, do you want it available on all platforms (iOS, Android, Blackberry, and Windows)
    A: I guess, yeah… sure all platforms.
    Good
    Okay for this mobile app – is your company standardized on a particular mobile phone platform? Most people are using Blackberrys, but it’s not a standard. A few are using iPhones.
    Follow-up: What percentage are using iPhones? “20%”
    Would there be any issues if the company standardized on Blackberry? “Yes, some of our executives use iPhones”
    Is anyone using Android? “Not that I’m aware of”
    End at 15:30
  • In improv we typically frown on our teammates asking questions. That’s not because we don’t want information from our scene partners, we do, but asking a question in the context of a scene puts our partner on the spot. It forces them to generate all of the content and the goal is for us to build that shared world-view as a team.
    The same is true of discovery. You want information from your users and stakeholders, but you have to put them in the right frame of mind to extract the information you need. You see, the RIGHT question  has the power to shift our mindset,  to drive creativity,  and to spur critical thinking about why we do the things we do.
  • So here are some tips for asking great questions:
    First, do your homework. As improvisers we read constantly: books, magazines, newspapers. We watch TV & movies. Whether it’s 50 Shades of Grey or the debt ceiling debate, I need to stay informed. You need to do the same. Understand enough about those you’re going to meet with, so you can ask intelligent questions.
  • Know their lingo – This is super-important. Remember we’re building a shared world-view here. Users answer in their language not yours. When I was working in High-frequency trading a trader once said to me, “We were arbing the Eurodollar pack and the bid got swept, there was no size in the body the flys, so we had to puke the outrights”
  • Ask high-stakes questions – “What’s the most crucial thing you do each day to manage your pipeline? “
  • Ask open-ended questions. Open-ended questions promote thoughtful responses and thoughtful responses are the backbone of exceptional discovery
  • So here are some tips for asking great questions:
    When you hear something interesting, use follow-ups to build an even deeper understanding.
  • Look for non-verbal cues. They may be saying one thing, but their body language tells a different story. Don’t let that slide. Call it out. Ask about it. CARE. When they see that you care, they’ll open up and provide the kind of feedback a dispassionate observer could never obtain.
    Whatever, you do – don’t stick to the script. It’s improv after all.
  • So we’ve talked about the types of questions you SHOULD ask. But what types of questions should you avoid.
  • If a possible answer is in the question, a lazy stakeholder may parrot that answer
  • Steve: (I can’t wait to tell my best friend that I got a hole in 1)
    T.K.: (Here comes Steve)
    Steve: Hey, T.K. I have some great news to tell you!
    T.K.: (I really need to tell him about my new promotion)
    T.K.: Really what is it?
    Steve: I was playing golf the other day and I got my first hole in 1
    T.K.: Wow, that’s great. I remember when I got a hole in 1. Did you hear I got a promotion?
    Steve: (REALLY, REALLY. Does he not get that this is the first time I’ve nailed a hole in 1”)
  • Steve: (I can’t wait to tell my best friend that I got a hole in 1)
    T.K.: (Here comes Steve)
    Steve: Hey, T.K. I have some great news to tell you!
    T.K.: (I really need to tell him about my new promotion)
    T.K.: Really what is it?
    Steve: I was playing golf the other day and I got my first hole in 1
    T.K.: Wow, that’s great. I remember when I got a hole in 1. Did you hear I got a promotion?
    Steve: (REALLY, REALLY. Does he not get that this is the first time I’ve nailed a hole in 1”)
  • Steve: (I can’t wait to tell my best friend that I got a hole in 1)
    T.K.: (Here comes Steve)
    Steve: Hey, T.K. I have some great news to tell you!
    T.K.: (I really need to tell him about my new promotion)
    T.K.: Really what is it?
    Steve: I was playing golf the other day and I got my first hole in 1
    T.K.: Wow, that’s great. I remember when I got a hole in 1. Did you hear I got a promotion?
    Steve: (REALLY, REALLY. Does he not get that this is the first time I’ve nailed a hole in 1”)
  • Steve: (I can’t wait to tell my best friend that I got a hole in 1)
    T.K.: (Here comes Steve)
    Steve: Hey, T.K. I have some great news to tell you!
    T.K.: (I really need to tell him about my new promotion)
    T.K.: Really what is it?
    Steve: I was playing golf the other day and I got my first hole in 1
    T.K.: Wow, that’s great. I remember when I got a hole in 1. Did you hear I got a promotion?
    Steve: (REALLY, REALLY. Does he not get that this is the first time I’ve nailed a hole in 1”)
  • Steve: (I can’t wait to tell my best friend that I got a hole in 1)
    T.K.: (Here comes Steve)
    Steve: Hey, T.K. I have some great news to tell you!
    T.K.: (I really need to tell him about my new promotion)
    T.K.: Really what is it?
    Steve: I was playing golf the other day and I got my first hole in 1
    T.K.: Wow, that’s great. I remember when I got a hole in 1. Did you hear I got a promotion?
    Steve: (REALLY, REALLY. Does he not get that this is the first time I’ve nailed a hole in 1”)
  • you need to first establish credibility in understanding their problem
    Active listening is what puts you in your user’s shoes.
    Internal – Solutioning, small, shiny objects
  • I want you to pair up again and decide who will go first. I want you to talk about anything you like and offer a 1-sentence gift to your partner. Your partner must then return that gift by responding with a single sentence. The catch: Your partner must start their sentence with the word that ended your last sentence. Clap if either you or your partner fails to successfully start the sentence with the correct word and then continue until I call time.
    End at 19 minutes
  • I want you to pair up again and decide who will go first. I want you to start by talking about the most interesting thing you’ve learned thus far at DF. Your partner will paraphrase and then add new information. Try to keep your pieces of information short 10-20 seconds. Again, if you or your partners notice a slip, clap once and move on until I call time.
  • TK: Make crisper
  • I want you to pair up again and decide who will go first. I want you to start by talking about the most interesting thing you’ve learned thus far at DF. Your partner will paraphrase and then add new information. Try to keep your pieces of information short 10-20 seconds. Again, if you or your partners notice a slip, clap once and move on until I call time.
    End at 23 minutes
  • Steve: How do you like the blog post I wrote?
    T.K.: It’s good, but it needs to be a little more… Salesforcey
    Steve: Salesforcy, what does that even mean?
    T.K.: It’s hard to describe, but I know it when I see it.
    Steve: How do you like the blog post I wrote?
    T.K.: It’s good, but it’s a little too academic. It needs to be more casual and approachable, so that customers can identify with the situation.
  • Being specific means being exact, precise, detailed and explicit. In discovery that means focused questions that are clear, concise, and unambiguous.
  • TODO split, like good and bad discovery
    Choose powerful words (i.e. exhausted, need, support, thrive)
    Make it quantifiable
    Make it personal.
    Use vague or flowery language, (it’s not Shakespeare)
    Don’t overcomplicate (one concept at a time)
    Don’t ask for speculation
  • TODO split, like good and bad discovery
    Choose powerful words (i.e. exhausted, need, support, thrive)
    Make it quantifiable
    Make it personal.
    Use vague or flowery language, (it’s not Shakespeare)
    Don’t overcomplicate (one concept at a time)
    Don’t ask for speculation
  • Pair up and hold a conversation on the first topic that one of you throws out.
    Take turns speaking
    The catch here is that each participant can only say three words when it is their turn. Again, clap once if you falter.
    Continue until we call time.
    End at 27 minutes
  • Improvisational Theatre Techniques Can Improve Your Discovery Skills

    1. 1. Improv + Discovery = Satisfied Customers How improvistational theatre techniques can improve your discovery skills T.K. Horeis, salesforce.com, Cloud and Industry Architect @TKHoreis Steve Bobrowski, salesforce.com, @sbob909
    2. 2. Safe harbor Safe harbor statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995: This presentation may contain forward-looking statements that involve risks, uncertainties, and assumptions. If any such uncertainties materialize or if any of the assumptions proves incorrect, the results of salesforce.com, inc. could differ materially from the results expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements we make. All statements other than statements of historical fact could be deemed forward-looking, including any projections of product or service availability, subscriber growth, earnings, revenues, or other financial items and any statements regarding strategies or plans of management for future operations, statements of belief, any statements concerning new, planned, or upgraded services or technology developments and customer contracts or use of our services. The risks and uncertainties referred to above include – but are not limited to – risks associated with developing and delivering new functionality for our service, new products and services, our new business model, our past operating losses, possible fluctuations in our operating results and rate of growth, interruptions or delays in our Web hosting, breach of our security measures, the outcome of any litigation, risks associated with completed and any possible mergers and acquisitions, the immature market in which we operate, our relatively limited operating history, our ability to expand, retain, and motivate our employees and manage our growth, new releases of our service and successful customer deployment, our limited history reselling non-salesforce.com products, and utilization and selling to larger enterprise customers. Further information on potential factors that could affect the financial results of salesforce.com, inc. is included in our annual report on Form 10-K for the most recent fiscal year and in our quarterly report on Form 10-Q for the most recent fiscal quarter. These documents and others containing important disclosures are available on the SEC Filings section of the Investor Information section of our Web site. Any unreleased services or features referenced in this or other presentations, press releases or public statements are not currently available and may not be delivered on time or at all. Customers who purchase our services should make the purchase decisions based upon features that are currently available. Salesforce.com, inc. assumes no obligation and does not intend to update these forward-looking statements.
    3. 3. In the next 44 minutes we want you to … • Understand the basics of improv • Learn how to apply improv during discovery • Practice improv make some new friends • Relax, laugh, and have fun!
    4. 4. Steve Bobrowski Principal Member Technical Staff Customer Centric Engineering, Technical Enablement @sbob909
    5. 5. T.K. Horeis Cloud and Industry Architect @TKHoreis
    6. 6. Definition: Improv … improvisation, unscripted theatre o N an pl No safety net!!! No sc rip t
    7. 7. How does it work? e eat ers Cr ct ara Ch Cr ea te ce n ien tio ud es A g ug s Who Shared What % % 3 2 3 2 7 5 7 5 Why When Understanding Where Austin Powers / Dr. Evil Image Credit: ©2002 New Line Cinema - All Rights Reserved How W or ld
    8. 8. Party Quirks An example of improv in action
    9. 9. Quirks for TK to discover • Steve: • Guest 2: • Guest 3:
    10. 10. Clap louder & louder as TK gets closer to discovering our quirks
    11. 11. So, what’s the trick? Rules Practice “Chance favors the prepared mind.“ - Louis Pasteur
    12. 12. What is Discovery? Believe it or not, the original concept came from the legal profession. quir Re ents em Determining what’s relevant is key to deep insight in IT Project Discovery as well. Game-changing results are about more than just requirements. User Personas isio V n Domain Understanding Su cc es s
    13. 13. Why discovery is so important … Good discovery = success Bad discovery = problems
    14. 14. Good discovery • Aligns vision & functionality • Reduces risk • Provides deeper insight • Defines success clearly • Identifies key factors
    15. 15. Poor discovery • Yields low adoption • Creates cost/schedule overruns • Increases extensibility problems • Raises credibility concerns
    16. 16. The Basics Somebody Some information Something Who What Where When Why How
    17. 17. So how are improv & discovery related? Team Efforts
    18. 18. So how are improv & discovery related? Exercises in incomplete information .
    19. 19. So how are improv & discovery related? Creativity
    20. 20. So how are improv & discovery related? Agility & quick adjustments Agent Jones, Credit: The Matrix, 1999 Warner Bros.
    21. 21. Improv techniques to improve your discovery skills Check yourr Check you agenda att agenda a the doorr the doo Yes,, Yes and and Be i Be n intth mom he mom e entt en The The f we o owerro f po p s ns uesi io questto n q Observe Observe Use morre Use mo e than worrds than wo ds Listen to Listen to understand, understand, not respond not respond Make itt Make i al perrsonal pe s on Suspend Suspend Judgment Judgment Soon Soon erris e is bettte be err You’re You’re there to there to support support Be Be spec spec iffc i i ic o werroff o Po we P ilience S lence S Parra Pa ap p ras h e ttova hrase o va lildatt idae e
    22. 22. Yes, and A demonstration of the technique
    23. 23. “Yes, and” … the MOST important rule of improv Accept what’s given to you (the Yes) Don’t deny reality
    24. 24. More about “Yes, and…” “Our current system “Our current system works pretty well, so why works pretty well, so why are we changing it?” are we changing it?” • Every contribution is a gift! • Respect those gifts (YES) • Add your own contribution (AND) using follow-up questions • No judging allowed-DISCOVER!
    25. 25. “No …”, the opposite of “yes, and …” Yes, Yes, but, … but, … No, I I No, agree… agree… • Shuts down dialogue • User’s don’t feel heard • Forget feasibility for now
    26. 26. Yes, and An exercise for you
    27. 27. The power of questions A demonstration of the concept
    28. 28. The power of questions, the right questions You have to put them in the right frame of mind to extract the information you need. Ask the RIGHT questions. Shift Mindset Yeah, why do Yeah, why do I Irequire an require an approval for… approval for…
    29. 29. Tips for good questions Do your homework
    30. 30. Tips for good questions Learn their lingo, don’t use yours The number of database The number of database buffer gets is buffer gets is extraordinarily high extraordinarily high because the query can’t because the query can’t use the composite indexes use the composite indexes or skinny tables in place. or skinny tables in place.
    31. 31. Tips for good questions Ask high-stakes questions
    32. 32. Tips for good questions Ask open-ended questions Thoughtful responses Avoid too many Yes/No questions
    33. 33. Tips for good questions Build deeper insight, using follow-ups
    34. 34. Tips for good questions Look for non-verbal cues
    35. 35. What kinds of questions should you avoid? Don’t include your opinion as part of the question
    36. 36. What kinds of questions should you avoid? Don’t lead the witness
    37. 37. What kinds of questions should you avoid? Avoid long or complex questions
    38. 38. Listening to understand, not respond A demonstration of the technique
    39. 39. Listening to understand, not respond Listening is not about waiting for your chance to talk or contribute.
    40. 40. Listening to understand, not respond Listening is not about waiting for your chance to talk or contribute. I can’t wait to tell my best friend that I got a hole in 1.
    41. 41. Listening to understand, not respond Listening is not about waiting for your chance to talk or contribute. Here comes Steve
    42. 42. Listening to understand, not respond Listening is not about waiting for your chance to talk or contribute. I really need to tell him about my new promotion!
    43. 43. Listening to understand, not respond Listening is not about waiting for your chance to talk or contribute. REALLY! REALLY! Does he not get this is my first hole in one!
    44. 44. Remove distractions External Did II remember Did remember to …? to …? Internal We could We could solve this solve this with a with a workflow workflow
    45. 45. Keep your focus Always ask yourself these 3 simple questions: Do II need to Do need to clarify anything clarify anything that they’ve said? that they’ve said? What was unique What was unique about this answer about this answer or information? or information? Do II understand Do understand enough to repeat enough to repeat the information the information back to them? back to them?
    46. 46. Listening to understand, not respond An exercise for everyone
    47. 47. Paraphrase to validate A demonstration of the technique
    48. 48. Paraphrase to validate Repeat their message (as you understand it). When? Ah, II think II Ah, think understand. understand. So, in other So, in other words, … words, … • • • • • If you find yourself, losing focus. If you’re not sure if you understand If you want to improve your listening skills If you can’t keep up If you find yourself interrupting, judging, or arguing What it does? • • Validates Builds trust
    49. 49. Paraphrase to validate An exercise for everyone
    50. 50. Be specific A demonstration of the technique
    51. 51. Be specific All my life, I always wanted to be somebody. Now I see that I should have been more specific. -- Lily Tomlin Make sure your questions are: ear llear C C Un Un am am biig bg s uo u s uou Focused Focused
    52. 52. Be specific Do • Choose powerful words • Make it quantifiable • Make it personal
    53. 53. Be specific Don’t • Use vague or flowery language • Don’t overcomplicate • Don’t ask for speculation
    54. 54. Be specific An exercise for everyone
    55. 55. T.K. Horeis Steve Bobrowski Cloud and Industry Architect, @TKHoreis Architect Evangelist, @sbob909

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