What are you afraid of?

Courage is being scared to death…and saddling up anyway.  ~John Wayne Courage isn’t an absence of fear. It’s doing what you are afraid to do. It’s having the power to let go of the familiar and forge ahead into new territory. ~John Maxwell One of the scariest things I’ve ever done was my very first public talk. Not skydiving. Not scuba diving. Not travelling around China. Public speaking (which is turns out is near the top of […] Read more »

Running away versus running towards

You Can't Iterate on a Burning Platform, Scrivle

The best in art and life comes from a center –  something urgent and powerful, an idea or emotion that insists on its being. From that insistence, a shape emerges and creates its structure out of passion. If you begin with a structure, you have to make up the passion, and that’s very hard to do. Roger Rosenblatt Burning platforms are effective at getting people to act because they trigger strong emotions. And emotions get […] Read more »

Delight is the result of discovering areas in a possibility space

If I were Will Wright, I’d say that ‘Fun is the process of discovering areas in a possibility space.’ We talk so much about emergent gameplay, non-linear storytelling, or about player-centered content. They’re all ways of increasing the possibility space, making self-refreshing puzzles. Theory of Fun In a similar vein, is it possible to say that “delight is the result of discovering areas in a possibility space?” And that to deliver experiences that delight designers need […] Read more »

Designing possibility spaces for experiences

Games usually start at a well-defined state (the setup in chess, for instance) and end when a specific state is reached (the king is checkmated). Players navigate this possibility space by their choices and actions; every player’s path is unique. Games cultivate – and exploit – possibility space better than any other medium. In linear storytelling, we can only imagine the possibility space that surrounds the narrative: What if Luke had joined the Dark Side? […] Read more »

Psychology of change

Change management is in need of a transformation through an improved understanding of how humans interpret their environment and choose to act. The Inconvenient Truth About Change Management Ever made this resolution: “I’m going to keep my email inbox empty.” Were you successful? I wasn’t. Why is change so hard? Because we’re not Econs, a term the authors of Nudge coined to portray the flawed thinking behind how people think. Econs are people who can think like Einstein, […] Read more »

No scene that doesn’t turn

Sparkline by Nancy Duarte, Resonate

Look closely at each scene and ask: what value is at stake in my character’s life at this moment? Love? Trust? What? How is that value charged at the top of the scene? Positive? Negative? Some of both? Then at close of scene, ask: where is this value now? Compare. If answer at end is same as opening, ask why is this scene in the script? Robert McKee Start, every time, with this inviolable rule: […] Read more »

What story does your approach to change tell?

The approach you take to a change initiative such as the deployment of enterprise software tells a story to those affected. Consider what each of these comments reveals:  “If we didn’t do it quick enough, the person in charge of the project would send email to their boss, bosses’ boss, up to the CEO… ‘Are you kidding us? You really cc’d that to the CEO?’” “We were never told what it is for and why […] Read more »

Why most organizations fail at delivering great customer experiences

Rockefeller Foundation. Taking a customer from like to love: the UX of long term relationships.

We see the world, not as it is, but as we are. Talmud Think back to the different organizations you interacted with today. Directly or indirectly. Drinking your morning coffee. Commuting to work. Shopping for groceries. Using your computer. Watching a show on cable. Having a beer. Watching your favorite sports team. Attending a yoga class. Writing a report. Doing your banking. As you think back to them, think about the store you visited, the […] Read more »

Not every interaction is a moment of truth

SAS get in there and fight

Stories are the creative conversion of life itself into a more powerful, clearer, more meaningful experience. They are the currency of human contact. Robert McKee I’ve been wrestling with the concept of moments of truth lately. One of the objectives when visualizing experiences using customer experience journey maps is to identify and redesign the moments of truth most critical in the journey. At first glance moments of truth feel like a simple concept, but when […] Read more »

What motivates people at work

Would your organization be more successful if your employees were more obedient? Or, would you be more successful if your employees were more artistic, motivated, connected, aware, passionate, and genuine? Seth Godin, Linchpin Try asking people in your organization: “Why does this organization exist… why do you come to work each day?” or “Why does this change initiative matter?” If you get a diverse set of answers such as “to make money” “because I need […] Read more »