Deciding what to build without killing each other

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Deciding what to build is hard. Making the decision as a team is even tougher. Team members often have differing views on which portions of the prototype are most important and what functionality to include. Tensions from the decision-making process can drive teams apart. In our labs group we have adopted a framework for making prototyping and project decisions. This presentation outlines the framework we use in Sabre Labs, as well as some examples of times we’ve gotten it right, and other times we haven’t.

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Deciding what to build without killing each other

  1. 1. DECIDING WHAT TO BUILD WITH- OUT KILLING EACH OTHER PROTOTYPE CAMP CHICAGO 2013 @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/d/dd/Bison_fight_in_Grand_Teton_NP.jpg
  2. 2. AKA: A FRAMEWORK FOR DISSENT https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/d/dd/Bison_fight_in_Grand_Teton_NP.jpg @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  3. 3. THIS IS MY VIEW TAKE IT, BREAK IT, MAKE IT YOUR OWN @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  4. 4. BACKGROUND http://www.flickr.com/photos/19598613@N00/662937442 @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  5. 5. http://www.flickr.com/photos/19598613@N00/662937442 ME 15 years in industry 5 years of teaching Interactive Design MFA @SCAD Currently Principal UX Designer at @SabreLabs iHeartColor iPhone App BACKGROUND/ @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  6. 6. http://www.flickr.com/photos/19598613@N00/662937442 SABRE LABS Travel-focused emerging technology incubator within Sabre Holdings Proof-of-concept & prototype heavy 4 developers + 1 designer + 1 director + 1 mascot 1 conference room Building double-digit “things” in 2013 Utilize a (roughly) lean methodology BACKGROUND/ @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  7. 7. THE PROBLEM http://www.flickr.com/photos/lawmurray/3032097518 @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  8. 8. BOLD STATEMENT #1 MAKING DECISIONS AS A TEAM IS HARD @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  9. 9. http://www.flickr.com/photos/lawmurray/3032097518 TEAM DECISION MAKING SCENARIOS A. One personality takes over and ruins everyone else’s life. B. Peers don’t want to step on toes, so no one makes a decision. C. Manager makes all decisions / team resents the manager. D. Well-meaning manager gives initial autonomy but takes it back. THE PROBLEM/ @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  10. 10. BOLD STATEMENT #2 INNOVATION IS HARD @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  11. 11. http://www.flickr.com/photos/lawmurray/3032097518 INNOVATION Innovation is usually a group activity. Dissent and innovation share a bed. Conflict is inherent in the process. Everyone has an opinion. THE PROBLEM/ @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  12. 12. BOLD STATEMENT #3 PROCESS CAN BE GOOD http://www.flickr.com/photos/sneakerdog/5048353439 @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  13. 13. http://www.flickr.com/photos/lawmurray/3032097518 WHAT’S THE PROCESS NEED TO DO? Needs a way of deciding what to put into the build. Needs to avoid bitterness and resentment that drives teams apart. Needs to allow and foster the traits of innovation. • Brainstorming • Cross-functional collaboration • Dissent THE PROBLEM/ @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  14. 14. A SOLUTION http://www.flickr.com/photos/aidanmorgan/2066553400/ @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  15. 15. http://www.flickr.com/photos/aidanmorgan/2066553400/ FOLLOW THE SIMPLE 9 STEP PROCESS 9 steps? Gasp! I’m joking but not really. Appoint a team member to own the process. A SOLUTION/ @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  16. 16. http://www.flickr.com/photos/aidanmorgan/2066553400/ STEPS 1-5 1. Brainstorm ideas 2. Create a value prop & assumptions 3. Independently rank assumptions 4. Facilitate discussion 5. Narrow the scope A SOLUTION/ A Framework For Dissent @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  17. 17. http://www.flickr.com/photos/aidanmorgan/2066553400/ STEPS 6-9 6. Determine the build level 7. Build the thing 8. Reflect & give credit 9. Iterate A SOLUTION/ @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  18. 18. 1. BRAINSTORM IDEAS A SOLUTION/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/vinothchandar/4378266575 @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  19. 19. GUIDELINES Defined Time-constrained Low fidelity Divergent Everyone should contribute A SOLUTION/ BRAINSTORM IDEAS/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/vinothchandar/4378266575 @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  20. 20. 2. CREATE A VALUE PROP & ASSUMPTIONS A SOLUTION/ https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/8/82/White_shark_%28Carcharodon_carcharias%29_scavenging_on_whale_carcass_-_journal.pone.0060797.g004-A.png @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  21. 21. AS A GROUP Value proposition. Set of assumptions. One person writes. Converge on a beta value prop. Merge like assumptions (10-15 max). A SOLUTION/ CREATE A VALUE PROP & ASSUMPTIONS/ https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/8/82/White_shark_%28Carcharodon_carcharias%29_scavenging_on_whale_carcass_-_journal.pone.0060797.g004-A.png @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  22. 22. https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/8/82/White_shark_%28Carcharodon_carcharias%29_scavenging_on_whale_carcass_-_journal.pone.0060797.g004-A.png GUIDELINES The value prop should be a short 1-2 sentence overview of why your project is valuable to your target audience. The assumptions should be guesses that you’re making about your project that could significantly change the outcome. They are risks. A SOLUTION/ CREATE A VALUE PROP & ASSUMPTIONS/ @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  23. 23. https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/8/82/White_shark_%28Carcharodon_carcharias%29_scavenging_on_whale_carcass_-_journal.pone.0060797.g004-A.png EXAMPLE VALUE PROP & ASSUMPTIONS Sharing work-related micro content will create new connections within globally dispersed and cross-domain teams. People want to consume micro content from people in the company People need to feel like it’s private to the company People want like buttons for photos People don’t want to share text without photos A SOLUTION/ CREATE A VALUE PROP & ASSUMPTIONS/ @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  24. 24. 3. INDEPENDENTLY RANK ASSUMPTIONS A SOLUTION/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/frted/5823411014 @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  25. 25. INDEPENDENTLY Rank every assumption privately. Focus on risk / importance to the project. No ties. A SOLUTION/ INDEPENDENTLY RANK ASSUMPTIONS/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/frted/5823411014 @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  26. 26. A SOLUTION/ INDEPENDENTLY RANK ASSUMPTIONS/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/frted/5823411014 COMPILE THE RANKINGS Overall Rank Overall Totals Assumption Our target audience is tech savvy ... ... ... Person 1 1 2 4 3 Person 2 4 2 3 1 @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  27. 27. A SOLUTION/ INDEPENDENTLY RANK ASSUMPTIONS/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/frted/5823411014 TOTAL Overall Rank Overall Totals 5 4 7 4 Assumption Our target audience is tech savvy ... ... ... Person 1 1 2 4 3 Person 2 4 2 3 1 @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  28. 28. A SOLUTION/ INDEPENDENTLY RANK ASSUMPTIONS/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/frted/5823411014 SORT Overall Rank 3 1 4 1 Overall Totals 5 4 7 4 Assumption Our target audience is tech savvy ... ... ... Person 1 1 2 4 3 Person 2 4 2 3 1 @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  29. 29. 4. FACILITATE DISCUSSION A SOLUTION/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/usfwspacific/5696206910 @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  30. 30. AS A GROUP Short discussions. Prove or disprove dissenting views Resolve conflicts. Note extended disagreement and move on (go with the group). Allow for ranking adjustments. Retotal / reorder rankings. A SOLUTION/ FACILITATE DISCUSSION/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/usfwspacific/5696206910 @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  31. 31. http://www.flickr.com/photos/usfwspacific/5696206910 FOCUS ON DISPARATE RANKINGS Overall Rank 3 1 4 1 Overall Totals 5 4 7 4 Assumption Our target audience is tech savvy ... ... ... Person 1 1 2 4 3 Person 2 4 2 3 1 A SOLUTION/ FACILITATE DISCUSSION/ @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  32. 32. 5. NARROW THE SCOPE A SOLUTION/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/wwarby/2446299426 @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  33. 33. AS A GROUP Focus on the most important assumptions. Select 3-5 to focus on. Prove without building if possible. A SOLUTION/ NARROW THE SCOPE/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/wwarby/2446299426 @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  34. 34. 6. DETERMINE THE BUILD LEVEL A SOLUTION/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/gregw66/3685503278 @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  35. 35. BUILD LEVELS MVP stands for “Minimum Viable Product”. In our case, that’s the minimum proof of concept / prototype / product that will allow us to see whether the assumptions we’re making are correct. A SOLUTION/ DETERMINE THE BUILD LEVEL/ Proof of Concept Prototype MVP Growth Product Mature Product Low Investment High Investment http://www.flickr.com/photos/gregw66/3685503278 @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  36. 36. http://www.flickr.com/photos/gregw66/3685503278 MV PROOF OF CONCEPT Least investment. Focused on technical feasibility. Usually technology centric. Useful for proving technical assumptions. A SOLUTION/ DETERMINE THE BUILD LEVEL/ @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  37. 37. http://www.flickr.com/photos/gregw66/3685503278 MV PROTOTYPE Some investment. Focused on technical feasibility and flow. Exploring project scope. Useful for proving experience / flow assumptions. A SOLUTION/ DETERMINE THE BUILD LEVEL/ @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  38. 38. http://www.flickr.com/photos/gregw66/3685503278 MV PRODUCT Medium investment. Focused on customers. Exploring market. Useful for proving adoption / social assumptions. A SOLUTION/ DETERMINE THE BUILD LEVEL/ @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  39. 39. 7. BUILD THE THING A SOLUTION/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/mikebaird/2602321551 @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  40. 40. GUIDELINES Prove without building if possible. Only build what’s necessary. Don’t build to an individual’s ego. Build in measurements for the assumptions. Prove or disprove the assumptions of the team. A SOLUTION/ BUILD THE THING/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/mikebaird/2602321551 @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  41. 41. A SOLUTION/ BUILD THE THING/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/mikebaird/2602321551 OBJECTIVES Focus on features and flow not placement and style. Work cross-functionally & collaboratively (don’t over document). Balance technical debt with speed. @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  42. 42. 8. REFLECT AND GIVE CREDIT A SOLUTION/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/34094515@N00/469168477 @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  43. 43. AS A GROUP Reflect on the assumptions. Reevaluate the project. Give credit where credit is due. A SOLUTION/ REFLECT AND GIVE CREDIT/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/34094515@N00/469168477 @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  44. 44. 9. ITERATE A SOLUTION/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/pazzani/7419277238 @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  45. 45. GUIDELINES Consider re-ranking assumptions or brainstorming new assumptions in light of your findings. Determine the next round of MVP. Build it. Repeat. A SOLUTION/ ITERATE/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/pazzani/7419277238 @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  46. 46. http://www.flickr.com/photos/aidanmorgan/2066553400/ TO REVIEW A SOLUTION/ 1. Brainstorm ideas 2. Create a value prop & assumptions 3. Independently rank assumptions 4. Facilitate discussion 5. Narrow the scope A Framework For Dissent @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  47. 47. http://www.flickr.com/photos/aidanmorgan/2066553400/ TO REVIEW 6. Determine the build level 7. Build the thing 8. Reflect & give credit 9. Iterate A SOLUTION/ @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  48. 48. INSIGHTS A SOLUTION/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/48509939@N07/5927758528/ @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  49. 49. http://www.flickr.com/photos/48509939@N07/5927758528/ WHAT HASN’T WORKED If team members didn’t participate. If authority figures didn’t participate. Too many assumptions. Trying to do too much in one day. A SOLUTION/ INSIGHTS/ @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  50. 50. http://www.flickr.com/photos/48509939@N07/5927758528/ WHAT HAS WORKED Uncovering unbiased initial opinions Open discussions Calling out points of contention Logging the process Revisiting the decision logs / assumptions / value propositions Giving credit where credit is due A SOLUTION/ INSIGHTS/ @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  51. 51. BOLD STATEMENT #4 THIS “FRAMEWORK FOR DISSENT” MIGHT HELP YOU TOO http://www.flickr.com/photos/mbiddulph/6947057418 @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  52. 52. https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/d/dd/Bison_fight_in_Grand_Teton_NP.jpg THANK YOU @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP
  53. 53. DECIDING WHAT TO BUILD WITH- OUT KILLING EACH OTHER PROTOTYPE CAMP CHICAGO 2013 @PHILIPLIKENS #PROTOTYPECAMP https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/d/dd/Bison_fight_in_Grand_Teton_NP.jpg QUESTIONS

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