Posts tagged “tactics”

Julie’s presentation on “Finding the Right People”

I recently had the privilege of guest-lecturing for an undergraduate class at the Center for Design Research at the University of Kansas taught by Julia Eschman and Tamara Christensen. The topic was the importance of recruiting the right people as participants to drive powerful insights for design research. I addressed the strategic reasons why, as well as tactics for doing so.

Recruiting is a key component of the design research process. It is to the detriment of project outcomes when it doesn’t get the attention it deserves. I know, I know… it’s a lot more fun to talk about sexy new methodologies and while away our days ideating, but before any of this can happen teams need to think hard about the source of the inspiring data and stories: people.

The presentation is below:

This was the first time I’ve presented this material, so take a look and please share some of your key experiences, snafus, complaints, challenges and learnings and etc. as you find the right people for your projects.

ChittahChattah Quickies

  • Stereotyping people by favorite authors – In our Reading Ahead research, we heard about how people were both exploring and communicating identity through their choices of reading material. Identity is a complex internal and external mechanism, where we (explicitly or implicitly) project outwards to imagine how we might appear to others…an internal act that feels or draws from the external. So the existence of lists like this, while tongue-in-cheek, validate that this process is real.
    (via @kottke)
  • Scott Baldwin on the fine art of listening – Try changing how you listen. Try to capture the message (listen with your ears, mind, eyes and heart). Make eye contact, use an open posture and be attentive to body language, volume, tone and pace. Look deeper than just the meaning of the words and try to understand the reason, feelings or intent beyond the words. Be empathetic, objective and analytical.
  • An iPhone app for ethnography – Really? I haven't tried it but I am not encouraged by the description. What we're looking for doesn't always fit into predetermined categories (indeed, how are you to be innovative if the type of data you are gathering is already classifiable?) and there's a danger in conflating data with insights (or as the blogger here writes "outcomes"). Raw data is overwhelming and takes time and skill to process, if you want to find out anything new. Now, we spend a lot of our time just wrangling (copying, renaming, organizing, sharing, etc.) all sorts of data, so I'm up for tools that can help with that; but I think it's easy to go overboard and create tools for uninteresting – or unreliable – research results
  • Lisa Loeb Eyewear Collection – Not an SNL parody ad from 1997, it's a real product line for 2010 (via @CarlAlviani)

Wired 13.05: Think Belligerent

Wired story about Apple using its muscle to prevent leaks about its products
In January, when bloggers from an enthusiast site stood outside San Francisco’s Moscone Center and photographed Life Is Random posters 48 hours before the phrase was to become the iPod shuffle’s ubiquitous tagline, an Apple crew rushed outside and forced them to delete their photos.

That’s kind of staggering. Is that really true? With what authority did they do that? Why did the bloggers comply? I’m curious about this one.


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