Speedboat is an interactive, collective and funny way to identify constraints, obstacles, problems with our product or our project, then to prioritize actions in order to remove them!
Speed boat, a boat with many facets…
The advantage of the Speed Boat metaphor is that the game can be very useful in a lot of contexts. Indeed, our boat is appropriate to represent our development project (which does not advance for some reason…), our product, subject to criticisms and comments of its users or the team in charge to bring agility to the organization.
Result of our Speedboat WorkShop ...The goal is the Agile Enterprise
The rules of the game
Draw a speed boat on a whiteboard or poster
The boat is our system, our product, our project or our team, so name it (Here, the boat is our Agile transition team)
Of course, the objective of the Speed boat (our product…) is to go fast (for best performance). So I first ask the participants to describe us precisely what characterizes the optimal performance, the desirable conditions (yellow notes attached to the port or on the island that the boat needs to reach)
The boat position represents today and the distance between the boat and the island can be seen as an indicator (not in our case)
The anchors represent the obstacles slowing the movement of our boat: impediments or things that our customers or users do not like about our product and affect its optimal functioning. The more they are low under the water, the more they are strong (well, up to you to follow this rule!)
The green arrows represent positive elements that push our boat
Several variations exist. Here is mine
Steps 1 & 2 After the opening and introduction of the game, I usually ask participants to work individually or in pairs (depending on group size) on the goal (desirable conditions) and the positive factors then to present their work to others.
Step 3: Then, individually or in small groups it is time to characterize the anchors (obstacles, constraints, things we don’t like)
Step 4: The work done, I ask the participants to post their anchors on the wall.
Step 5: Collective consolidation and anchors prioritization
Step 6: I usually close the game with an action plan to set up to remove the major anchors!
In short, we generally have a good time playing that game: enjoyable, useful but also very effective!
One more time… and in small groups please: more fun, more feedback and more information collected even if you need more preparation effort (related to realistic content, screenshots and elements cutting, materials provided).
Design Workshop :Paper prototyping in small groups
At a time when others are still searching and waiting for the magic prototyping tool to make wireframe, Paper prototyping deliberately focuses on proximity, human interactions, feedback, collaboration, and simplicity… some core agile values.
According to me, even more in Agile contexts, the real strength of Wireframe format is on its ability:
To be done in a collaborative mode,
To generate feedback,
To share the Vision of the User interface
To support business and development activities
To stay at a “just enough” level (documentation, process, effort…)
And this is exactly what paper prototyping offers…
Moreover, Paper prototyping technique is FAST, EASY and FLEXIBLE (in terms of protocols…).
This is what I have observed in some group sessions:
It is highly collaborative with a rich feedback generation (especially for group sessions)
It enables multi disciplinary teams, various actors to get a common vision,
It reduces communication issues: we do it in groups, face to face, in the same room…
It fosters creativity by giving the impression that nothing is fixed and that we can change things easily
It’s interactive and fun with direct manipulation and collective activities (far from the passivity of some traditional meetings)
It is adaptive and scalable with various facilitation techniques adjusted to different contexts
To conclude, take a look at this huge session of paper prototyping:
Tell me and I’ll forget
Show me and I may remember
Involve me and I’ll understand
A Chinese quote and a principle that we should apply everyday on our projects. So encourage good learning, seek maximum cooperation, stimulate interactions, raise the feedback… ENGAGE clients and stakeholders in order to make our intervention really valuable !