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  • 1. When you’re listening at your best, you are like… what?
    Please draw your answer on a sticky label and write your name alongside
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 2. X-press Insightwith X-Ray Listening
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 3. What’s important to you about insight skills?
    Better skills
    Better insight
    Better projects
    Better products
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 4. “Don’t know” is normal!
    So develop the skills to elicit people’s unconscious and tacit requirements
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 5. Judy Rees
    Former news reporter
    Helped to create digital Teletext (inc. requirements gathering & user testing)
    Co-author of Clean Language: Revealing Metaphors and Opening Minds
    MD of X-Ray Listening
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 6. This session
    Time-limited for maximum learning/minute
    Practical skills rather than theory
    References in handout, or ask at the end
    Ask questions, but we may come back to them
    You will be learning on multiple levels
    Eat, drink, move when you need to
    Stay curious and comfortable with not knowing
    For best results…
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 7. …just dive in!
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 8. When you’re listening at your best, you are like… what?
    (starter question only)
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 9. Use only these questionsand your partner’s own words
    • What kind of X (is that X)?
    • 10. Is there anything else about (that) X?
    Ask in any order, as many times as you like
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 11. Tip: Remember the first word(s) they say about their badge
    You can always go back to ask about this if you lose track
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 12. Tip: Notice gestures
    Where are they imagining the thing they are talking about?
    Look at it as you ask about it
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 13. Off the top of the head
    Gut feelings
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 14. Tip: Use silence
    Try the eight-second technique
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 15. Tip: Keep using their words
    It keeps them engaged, makes them feel respected, and stops you using jargon
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 16. Metaphors
    Describe one kind of thing in terms of another kind of thing
    Very effective for explaining complex ideas
    E.g. “X-Ray Listening”
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 17. Explicit metaphors in research
    “If Amberlight was a dog, what kind of dog would it be?”
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 18. Metaphors can both explain and persuade
    Note: Cultural similarity
    Individual differences
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 19. We think in metaphor
    “Native language of the unconscious mind”
    As we learn, we link new ideas to old ones – that is, we make our own metaphors
    Metaphors spill out in our speech and writing without being consciously chosen
    They can therefore be used to explore people’s unconscious “thoughts”
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 20. Spotting metaphors can take practice
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 21. “It’s like a koala bear crapped a rainbow in my head”
    (SeaLab 2012)
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 22. “It’s like a pencil with an eraser at both ends”
    (Emery, Studying Politics)
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 23. (
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 24. “Take a walk on the wild side”
    (Lou Reed)
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 25. “Constraint inspires creativity”
    (Twitter help pages)
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 26. Spotting metaphors
    • Listen for “it’s like…” or “it’s as if…”
    • 27. These phrases may only be implied
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 28. Exploring metaphors
    Use the Clean Language questions
    What kind of X (is that X)?
    Is there anything else about (that) X?
    Be prepared for surprises
    Be respectful
    Both explicit and implicit metaphors can be explored – but explicit ones are easiest
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 29. Asking for a metaphor
    Ask: “And that’s like… what?” (slowly)
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 30. From concept to metaphor
    Start from a concept, e.g. “interface”
    Uncover some adjectives/features, e.g. “straightforward and friendly”
    Then ask: “That’s straightforward and friendly like… what?”
    Not: “That’s an interface like what?”
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 31. Activity: Concept to metaphor
    ‘Client’ lists some features of a good user interface
    ‘Consultant’ asks: “And that’s <feature> and <feature> like… what?”
    Once client has volunteered a metaphor, ask:
    What kind of X (is that X)?
    Is there anything else about (that) X?
    (In any order, as many times as you like)
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 32. Questions?
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 33. And all of that’s like… what?
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 34. Further reading
    Clean Language: Revealing Metaphors and Opening Minds by Wendy Sullivan and Judy Rees
    Role of the unconscious:
    A Whole New Mind by Daniel Pink
    Importance of metaphor:
    The Stuff of Thought by Steven Pinker
    How Customers Think by Gerald Zaltman
    © Judy Rees 2009
  • 35. Keep in touch
    +44 (0)7979 495509
    © Judy Rees 2009