Photos from the interconnect session.

Photos from the interconnect session.

Goal

In preparation for a new product direction we wanted to gather the high level needs of our customers. IBM's Interconnect was the perfect place to gather them and get to know their needs. I lead a serise of workshops to gather what we needed.  

Method

  • 2 Sessions
  • 21 Participants
  • KJ Method (2 Focus Questions
    • Step 1: Review focus questions
    • Step 2: Organize Into groups
    • Step 3: Put opinions on Sticky Notes
    • Step 4: Put Sticky Notes on the wall
    • Step 5: Group similar items
    • Step 6: Naming each group
    • Step 7: Voting on most important groups
    • Step 8: Ranking most important groups
  • Post workshop affinitization and analysis
  • Using findings to guide internal workshop
 
 Our internal workshop to determine product direction. 

Our internal workshop to determine product direction. 

Impact

After 200 plus stickies I sorted through them and took into account the participants voting to determine 5 themes. I used those themes to guide our conversations in a following workshop. This allowed us to develop our "Hills" (3 Goals that define our product) with our end users influence. 

Lessons learned

The KJ method worked really well for gathering a group consensus, but the one bit of feedback I got from participants that provided feedback was it was a bit of a one way street. In other words they expected to get more benefit out of the session aside from just my team getting benefit. So the following year I added 5 mins of a sneak preview of the product and tried to encourage the participants to network with each other during the session.