Much has been written on the difference between innovation and invention. This makes some sense because it seems every company in the world, big or small, is striving for an innovative approach to solving existing problems. However, there is mass confusion about what innovation actually is—especially in the enterprise-software space.
It seems that every consultancy is frothing at the mouth to win the very lucrative opportunities to help organizations solve their digital-transformation problems. And they’re employing our experience-design playbook to do this.
How? In a word: empathy. Hearing and reading about all the latest approaches in technology and sales, empathy is the best new thing—the secret skill that can enable us to reach dizzying, new heights. Empathy could solve world hunger and make us all better people. But the fact that empathy does actually make us better people is lost on most. Empathy can help us innovate more quickly and, ultimately, sell more products, satisfy more customers, and generate greater revenues. Read More
These days, it seems that everyone is all about design thinking—scrambling to jump on this runaway train and ride it for what it’s worth before the next big thing hits. There are design-thinking classes and certifications from premier management and technology consulting firms. However, UX professionals who focus on delivering amazing user experiences to people have always been design thinkers—for very good reason. After all, everything we do and experience in life is designed. From the applications we use, to the way we purchase a cup of coffee, design is everywhere. These things don’t just happen. Product teams don’t just write and execute requirements. Business analysts don’t just dream up these experiences. We design them by following design principles and business strategies. So, by employing the same design strategies to real business problems, we are bound to be able to come up with better solutions.
Digital transformation is another popular term that describes the journey companies are undertaking today as they look to integrate digital technologies into every aspect of their business. These transformations consider people, process, organizational culture, the how, what, and why around the ways customers engage with their business. While every major company is engaging in digital transformation, their progress and maturity in this endeavor varies greatly. Throughout what are often multiyear transformation programs, they’re grappling with legacy processes, technology, and culture. As a result, many are still struggling to deliver tangible business outcomes. In fact, it is hard to find any company that will stand up and say, “Yes! We have reached the end of our digital-transformation journey, and we succeeded!” Why is that? Read More
Ever since I was little, I’ve avoided uncomfortable moments in movies. I would always fast forward through the parts where the characters I liked put themselves in uncomfortable or embarrassing positions. I still do that today. In general, most people avoid uncomfortable situations in real life, but we all have our strategies for dealing with them.
Just this morning, I had an uncomfortable encounter with a shoeshine guy at the airport. After exchanging the usual pleasantries, he proceeded to talk to me about his religious beliefs in excruciating detail. At this juncture, I had several options. I could have asked him to stop. However, that would have immediately changed the interaction between the two of us from a friendly service encounter to one of frosty silence. I could have faked interest and engaged with him on this topic—something I’d have a hard time doing in my personal life. I could have chosen to let this annoy me. However, getting my shoes shined is one of my personal pleasures, and the context was all wrong for going down this path. Read More