13 – working with design strategy tools
This exercise challenges you to play around with the different design strategy tools detailed in this chapter 5 of the book, in order to discover how they work in practice and what their value might be in strategic design projects.
see page 161 of BDI.
Two people, a roll of plain wallpaper, black, green and red felt pens, post-it notes and some time.
Pick an experience with a product or service you’ve had lately that you would like to work on as a design strategist. Choose one that includes a considerable span of the consumer journey, for example, booking and going on a holiday.
Take turns in telling your partner about the experience in as much detail as possible, and don’t leave out your personal emotions during different stages of the experience.
Take about three metres of wallpaper and hang it on the wall, horizontally, one for each experience. Define the different steps in time that created the
experience. Write each step on a post-it, and map them on the wallpaper. You’ve just created a consumer journey map!
Go over each step and analyse to what extent it was branded. Was the step unique to the brand, and did it reflect what the brand stands for? Was design used to reflect the brand and bring it to life?
Take the black felt pen and write under each post-it what the design objective of each step may have been. For example, when you booked the vacation, at some point you consulted a Lonely Planet travel guide for your destination. Its design objective was to give you up-to-date inside information. Later on, you may have looked for images of your destination on Flickr. Its design objective was to inspire you and help you find what you were looking for.
Then, under each step, write which design functions were used intensively (in green), and which weren’t but should have been (in red), based on the table on page 141 in the book. For example, the check-in at the airport was designed well in terms of aesthetics, but the queueing and waiting and dealing with paper forms was quite old-fashioned: it could have used a bit more design as innovation.
Next, under each step, write which design disciplines were used intensively (in green), and which weren’t but should have been (in red). For example, a lot of attention had been paid to the architecture of the holiday resort, but the service provided by the personnel was poor.
Under each step, write which design layers were used intensively (in green), and which weren’t but should have been (in red); e.g. the rental car office’s interior looked outdated but interaction with the staff was very efficient. Go over both wallpapers and marvel at the complexity of the design: do you see how building a solid design strategy would have created a more rewarding experience? How would you help the organisation behind your experience develop a design strategy?
Upload a photo of your wallpaper and your comments underneath. I can’t wait to see what you’ve made of this exercise!