Presented by Kevin M. Hoffman.
- Guns n’ Roses spent two weeks recording “Appetite for Destruction.” Axl Rose spent ten years working on “Chinese Democracy.”
NIH looked at how well different teams across disciplines were collaborating. The study found that one key predictor of the success of a team regardless of size, proximity, etc.: Meetings. The more meetings they had, the better the team worked together to better results.
People are more collaborative and innovative when they’re together. – Marissa Mayer
File Sharing and Repositories are not collaboration.
- These systems do what email used to do a terrible job of doing and content management systems did an okay job of. They improve workflow.
Collaboration happens when the whole is greater than the sum.
- Real-time meetings can lead to collaboration. But how do we make meetings more productive?
- A means of getting everyone’s perspectives out of their brains and into a design.
- Anyone adding value is collaboration.
Design the Meeting
We designed our time together to accomplish really specific goals.
- Are decisions needed? Yes? Have a meeting! No? No meeting.
- Only meet when a decision need to be made.
- Before the meeting, list out all the decisions that need to be made. Then, identify the owner of those decisions.
Great meetings start with clear objectives.
- Plan meetings around decisions that need to be made, not around people.
- Drive meetings toward decision points.
- Every meeting should open with some kind of divergent thinking and close with convergent thinking.
- Brainstorming is divergent thinking without convergent thinking.
Two ways to design meetings:
- Plan outcomes.
- Give room for ideas to breathe.
Provide Access to the Process
- Build a working prototype to keep the client engaged throughout the design process.
- Use a facilitator to keep the meeting neutral. This person does not contribute or evaluate, but helps bring people and ideas together.
- The facilitator should have sufficient domain knowledge including technology, content, workflow, and culture. Also conducts one-on-one interviews before the meeting.
Stop using meetings (e.g. kickoff meetings) for research.
- Stakeholder and user interviews are a great way to do research ahead of kickoff meetings. This research facilitates a productive conversation.
- The Pen Is Mightier Than The Keyboard – study on the advantage of longhand notes over laptop note-taking.
- Create a visual agenda on a giant, single sheet of paper.
- Introduce public recording to meetings. Areas in the meeting space where sketching and other visual engagement can happen.
Critical ideas are lost if you don’t engage visually.
- Visually represent the agenda, conflicts, and key decisions. These are the visuals that get you to the testable thing.
Two ways to provide access to process:
- Neutral, informed facilitation.
- Use visuals for agendas, conflicts, decisions, and concepts.
Be transparent about the risks we’re taking and the outcomes we get from those risks.
- Haverford College’s experimentation with their primary navigation. Removed “Athletics” for five days and users were able to better-find athletics-related content coming from search.
Shorter and measurable experiments focus on results.
- It’s more powerful and more influential when you share information between teams. Teams become more influential because they can help more people.
Sharing is influence.
- Experiment Calculator can help you figure out how to run a design experiment.
Two aspects to transparency:
- Focuses interest on the job at hand.
- Changes internal culture.
Three Building Blocks of Co-Design
- Design meetings.
- Provide access to projects. Bring stakeholders in early before you spend too much time on anything.
- Be transparent about risks and outcomes.
You are a guide for doing this better.
- Anil Dash’s Learn to Code Switch Before You Learn To Code