Facilitating Great Design

by Kevin M. Hoffman

6 Reader Comments

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  1. > I’ve been facilitating meetings where someone,
    > out of the blue, has said the most ridiculous
    > thing you could possibly imagine.
    > …
    > It may be … crazy, but it’s more important
    > for you as a facilitator to understand why
    > that idea surfaced in their brain, and how
    > it relates back to the value they hope to
    > add to the project

    So even then it’s adopt, adapt, and improve… (keeping the silly mask in the drawer) …and empathise! Many a nerd will need a shrink when he realises that he’s supposed to be his client’s shrink of sorts. He will need much force to be with him. Some months ago we installed a punching bag in our backroom to let off steem after meetings. Probably not the right attitude but it helps.

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  2. @mykola Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

    I understand the intent of using a psychiatrist as a metaphor for design facilitation, but I think communicating the value of (a) good design (strategy) in someone’s native vocabulary is a different goal than actually analyzing and ascribing meaning to that vocabulary. In other words, understanding where someone is coming from is not necessarily the same as validating it.

    But these are fine lines, for sure.

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  3. It’s about knowing your target market, and researching the UI. I am a big fan of pre built scripts that allow superior functionality to not so savvy business owners making their own site.

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  4. Nice article and good points raised. Its very important to know the customer and his needs in general. Meetings are very important because when you talk, ideas flow and you come to know more about the customer needs.

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  5. @chrissilva Thanks for your comment. I couldn’t agree more with the sentiment that audience empathy is central to any design conversation; the more you understand the audience the better you can design things they need and love. However, I’m afraid I didn’t follow your second comment regarding “pre-built scripts.” My apologies – care to elaborate?

    @amstech Thank you for your kind words. There are fundamentally two kinds of work: work we do within groups (meetings) and work we do by ourselves. There’s no reason not to hold meetings to the same level of productivity standards that we apply to individuals. It’s just a question of understanding what works best in a group, and how to make success in group work something you can reproduce. Cheers.

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  6. Kevin thank you for facilitating my understanding of how to Facilitate Great Design with great meetings. Thanks for including the book references too.

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