Don’t mix up our stuff!! Empathy Interviews --> Clean Language

Design Thinking is one of the best tools available to create products and services with the potential to satisfy people’s needs. Since it is a human-centered process, empathy interviews are the most common technique for collecting data.

If you want to obtain amazing results, pay full attention and focus on the quality of the information you collect! The more accurate and authentic it is, the more solid and mind-blowing insights you will obtain to guide your ideation phase.

But be careful! 1) Specialized books and articles have plenty of examples of questionnaires and structured interviews full of leading questions. 2) As interviewers, we tend to contaminate our research with our own metaphors, interpretations, suggestions, mind-reading, references and/or unwarranted assumptions. 3) Interviewees unconsciously look for hidden cues on the questions about how to answer them –conformity, social influence, group pressure.

Interviewer: “We know change is hard and transitions are always tough. What kind of impact has the new system had? How has this impacted your daily life?” Interviewee: “I thought the new system was awesome, but now that you mention it, it definitely has had a very large impact...”

Do you want to obtain reliable information? Or more useful and accurate results? Or minimizing the chances of influencing and compromising data authenticity with your bias? CLEAN LANGUAGE is a great tool for this. It’s not a language and it’s not about language; it’s not even about speaking clearly, using fancy jargon or swearing.

If you want to understand people, how they think and feel, their emotions, passions, frustrations, challenges and dreams, do not miss this workshop. You will have an opportunity to learn, practice and also have fun.

 
 

Outline/Structure of the Workshop

PRESENTATION HISTORY:

The topic was presented at the Agile Worldwide Camp 2019 and a 60-minute presentation will be presented in October at the Agile Alliance Conference for Emergent Economies in Colombia.

If it is approved by the Agile India Conference, a 45-minute version will be presented at the User Experience Professionals Association (UXPA) monthly meeting, and two local meetups in Washington, DC in January and February 2020.

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PRESENTATION STRUCTURE:

1) BUILDING CONNECTIONS (speaker-attendees, attendees-topic) - 6 minutes

+ 2-min Talk: Why we are here (Design Thinking / Empathy interviews / Needs discovery)

+ 1-min Video: Introductory video A.

+ 2-min Exercise: Debrief A.

+ 1-min Video: Introductory video B.

2) MAKING THE POINT - 6 minutes

+ 4-min Talk: History and traditional uses of Clean Language.

+ 2-min Talk: Examples.

3) WORKSHOP MECHANICS - 9 minutes

+ 3-min Exercise: Fill in the blank

+ 3-min Exercise: True and false

+ 3-min Exercise: Myth or fact

For a small group, speaker will uncover EASEL PADS prepared in advance and placed around the room.

For a large group, speaker will use projector and ask questions to the audience.

4) PRACTICE - 24 minutes

+ 10-min Exercise: Partner A

+ 10-min Exercise: Partner B

+ 4-min Q&A and Debrief

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EXAMPLES OF OTHER PUBLIC ENGAGEMENTS:

https://drive.google.com/file/d/108r2CrmlKIZXGDw1W0ifw7e82szXEvXJ/view?usp=sharing

https://drive.google.com/open?id=1dH5MAtusLvz7_6qhxG9hJx1tH-nXzp9-

https://drive.google.com/open?id=1JAq2fcByXxcXp8Il89JEWgfur8KFRKUU

Learning Outcome

- Gain a deeper understanding of Clean Language as a facilitation technique.

- Learn replicable examples of how to apply Clean Language in different scenarios.

- Obtain a curated list of examples of biased and clean interview questions.

- Practice the technique and experience the results at least with two people.

Target Audience

Agilists, design thinkers, scrum masters, agile coaches, managers, team members

schedule Submitted 3 months ago

Public Feedback

comment Suggest improvements to the Speaker
  • Jeremy Kriegel
    By Jeremy Kriegel  ~  2 months ago
    reply Reply

    Very relevant. When I first learned of Clean Language, I saw the potential to positively impact user research. I think you can tighten up the description, possibly focusing more on the outcome than the problem (although that is implied by the problem). I like that a fair amount of the time is set aside for exercises. 

    • Ricardo Abella
      By Ricardo Abella  ~  2 months ago
      reply Reply

      Hi Jeremy,

      Thank you for taking the time to review my proposal and write a comment.

      I modified the abstract, moving the central idea a little bit from the problem to the outcome. Certainly, it looks smoother and it shows more benefits to attendees.

      Ricardo