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Generate ideas for Design Lab project

Lucas Araki

on 9 September 2013

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Transcript of Ideate

How would you solve this if you had an unlimited budget?
Design Thinking Action Lab
Assignment #3

Problem Statement
New Hires need to
do something
where there is
no right answer
that requires
interaction with others
and which provides
value to the supervisor
copy and paste as needed and take advantage of an infinite canvas!
Mindset: all ideas count
Goal: go for quantity
What are all the obvious solutions?
How would a 5-year old solve the problem?
How would you solve this without spending money?
What if you had power over laws of nature?
What can you add to, remove from, modify, or combine about these solutions?
What is the worse idea to solve this problem?
How can you change this idead to make it work?
What would be a ridiculous solution?
1) The Most Practical
Idea #9: Interview Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) and write a Wiki to transfer the knowledge is the most practical because every new employee or employee given a new task must at some point talk to "the expert" and take notes.
This idea is very practical because putting the notes up on a wiki (very easy since my company has a tool to do it) or any kind of online document for that matter, is as easy as copy-paste from one document to another.
2) The Most Disruptive
3) My Favorite
1. Find a mentor and learn from him or her by doing something
2. Keep a journal for the first year of work, then produce a retrospective report identifying lessons learned and areas for improvement
3. Reverse mentoring to teach more senior employees new skills
4. Participate in a group of new hires, with the goal of forming solutions to problems that have been solved in order to identify new ways of doing things
5. Organize social outside-of-work event for the team
6. Interview every member of the team and do a fun presentation on the team's biographies
Learning/teach new skills
Benefit other new hires
Benefit the team / company
Team Building
7. Come up with a hard (work-related) problem to solve, then setup a competition to see who in the team comes up with the best solution
Personal benefit
8. Shadow or become an executive assistant to an expert / learn by being their right-hand man
9. Interview SME and write a Wiki to transfer the knowledge
10. Develop the training materials for a SME
11. Spend time in other teams' meetings and report how other teams do things, identify areas for collaboration and frictions causing inefficiencies.
Have the time
12. Volunteer to attend all meetings and produce meeting notes
13. Write a new hire handbook from all the tips, suggestions, and hard-earned knowledge
13. Give them an easy task to accomplish and give them a reward (cake for the whole team) when they do
14. Have the new hire talk to everyone on the team and get status, like the team lead would, and then report back to lead (maybe get different data because he is not the team lead; more honest answers?)
15. Build labs where everyone can just experiment with any ideas
18. Send the new hires to customer meetings instead of the experts
No risk / business impact
16. Fund ideas new hires have even if not related to roadmap and strategy
17. Have the new hire be the assistant to the project lead
19. Freeze time bubble" new hire can talk and learn from anyone inside the bubble, and no time will pass for either person
20. "Star Trek Holoddeck" where we can put new hires into any and all situations so they can learn and be prepared when it happens
21. Have the new hire lead a team to create simulations of scenarios or experiments of any decisions that have some associated uncertainty (risk)
22. Make a drawing of what how you see your role
23. Write a story about how your dream job would be
24. Have the new hire perform an independent research project of their choosing
25. Send the new hire as the expert's helper / assistant
26. "Super-speed" have new hire participate in multiple tasks at the "same-time" shadowing multiple experts
27. If new-hire is a graduate student, have them teach what they learned in her most interesting course or research project
27. Start a Toastmasters club
Idea #15, "Build labs where everyone can just experiment with any ideas," is the most disruptive because it would give all employees the one "freedom" which they most desire (from my interviews). This goes beyond the problem statement because it would benefit other stakeholders besides just the new hire.
This has the greatest "potential for greatness" because it would enable more experienced employees and SMEs to share their knowledge with new hires by collaborating on experiments, innovations, and ideas without the constraints of budget, risk, and business strategy. This environment is for exploration and learning, with the potential (not the goal) of paying huge dividends for the individuals involved and the business.
Idea #4 "Participate in a group of new hires, with the goal of forming solutions to problems that have been solved in order to identify new ways of doing things" is my favorite because in most places we don't do this enough.
I think this would be an interesting activity to do, including applying design thinking, to problems that may have a solution, but may not have the "best" solution. I also personally believe a lot of innefficiency is built into the workplace systems because of the reluctance to go away from the "way we have always done this." Additionally, I think many new hires would feel empowered by the feeling that they can change how things are done because of their unique advantage of not really knowing how things "should" be done, thus changing their "fear"of what they don't know to an asset, namely a unique perspective.
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