Evil Tricks at Work

Evil_Tricks_at_Work.001

First off, I don’t really mean evil. I generally enjoy both my work and coworkers (and clients back in the day), but I find that sometimes it gets monotonous. Every project is different, but after almost 15 years in the business, I find many of my opportunities to improve lie in preventing, managing, and resolving conflict as efficiently as possible. I call these solutions my evil tricks because thy make things so easy that it feels a bit evil.

I decided to share a few, not to show you that I’m some two-faced, devious hack, but because they actually help me enjoy work and perform at my highest level. I’d love to hear your thoughts and tricks.

1. Always Take Time to Plan

Everyone, everywhere is being asked to do a lot. I admit that I used to feel a little martyred by the amount that I was doing and often just reacted to new requests without a lot of though. Jumping right into a deliverable is never the right solution. Never. The likelihood that you’ll do it right is close to zero and you’ll end up wasting an incredible amount of time re-doing and re-thinking. After a few years of being shown this lesson again and again, I finally got it.

This doesn’t mean you have to do several weeks of research before cracking open Keynote for a short presentation. But taking the time to put together an outline in email and checking it with your manager or a team member will get you across the finish line with the fewest stumbles. I can’t stress this enough: Rework sucks! Wasting your time is terrible. And wasting the time of your team (or client, manager, etc.) is unacceptable. Don’t be “that person.”

Part of planning is constraining the scope of your deliverable to the boundaries of the available time and budget. But a common practice of people who are natural planners is to use every available minute working on the deliverable. If it’s due on Friday at noon, planning to work on it until 11:00am leaves out some important steps. Leave time for an internal review, proof reading, and whatever else is necessary in your organization.

For instance, I know my manager is busy and asking him to review my work at the last minute puts him in a tough situation. He certainly wants to make sure his team puts out strong work, but he’s got competing priorities. And it’s not good for me either. I need to make sure that he has enough time to review and that I have enough time to make any adjustments he suggests, discuss anything I don’t agree with, and send it back to him so he has the final copy before delivery.

You’re situation could be different, but having a well-communicated plan for the work that has to happen once you finish your draft is essential to effective, efficient delivery.

2. Create an Estimation Formula

A pet peeve of mine is when I ask someone how long something with take and they have either no idea or say that it will take much less time than I expect. My success and yours is based on how well people trust us to be accountable to the things we say we’ll do. If I tell a coworker that I have no idea how long something will take, how can they possibly plan their work that depends on it? And if I tell them a timeframe that’s too short for me to possibly deliver on (or is based on only the best possible scenario), they are likely to be disappointed. Even if my work is great, it’s late and no one trusts me to delivery.

And it goes beyond you as an individual contributor. Your manager makes promises based on the promises you make her. If you give a bad estimate, you make her look bad and that is something she’ll remember. If you’re a manager, your job to is help your team make better estimates and ask questions if something seems off. But if you’re an individual contributor looking to move up, you need to be self-sufficient when it comes to estimating.

The solutions is certainly not “padding” estimates with extra hours, days, and weeks to simply give yourself breathing room. If it feels like lying, it is lying. You need a formula and to create a great one, you need some data. If you happen to be in an organization that tracks time, the data should be easy to get and you can figure out the average number of hours different size projects take. Breaking that down into the smallest increments possible, say “it takes 8 hours to produce a single wireframe page of average complexity,” really makes your estimates reliable and bolsters your trustworthiness.

You may think that estimate for a wireframe is really high. You can make a wireframe of average complexity in 2 hours, right? Sure, but in that 8 hours are the alternative versions you’ll have to do to show error placement or dynamic states, review meetings, and revision passes. Knowing that and having a formula that includes it takes you from sufficient to sophisticated.

3. Distribute Meeting Notes

As a woman I try to keep from doing things that make me feel like a secretary. I want to be the person driving decisions in a meeting, not passively taking note of what others say. For a long time, I never took notes. My memory was so good that I didn’t need them. And when I started needing notes, I made them only for myself. Terrible strategy.

My training in usability testing helps me understand what people really mean and not just want they say. My recollection of a meeting is generally something like, “we talked about a plan, most of us seemed to agree, there were some minor and major points of contention that were vaguely articulated and left unresolved, and then we ran out of time.” I find when I ask others about they meeting they are never on that same middle ground as me. The people in support of the plan believe the plan is going forward. And the people with the issues believe the plan is not agreed to. And then we spend weeks in the same meeting until we finally get a breakthrough which is likely due more to exhaustion that agreement.

I’m not sure if most meeting attendees only hear what they want to hear, are bullying others into submission, being passive aggressive, or simply not paying attention. Probably all of the above at one point or another. All I know is that I seem to have a better than average grasp on the the unresolved issues. And rather than just sitting back and waiting for someone else to take responsibility for the issues, I try to document my take on the meeting and distribute it to attendees.

I’m not some selflessly perfect employee. I care about the success of my projects, but I try to take my emotion off the table (see 10.) My reasons for doing this are actually quite self-serving. I hate deja-vu meetings where everyone is finally coming to a realization I had weeks ago. I hate the back-channeling that has to happen between meetings to get everyone’s version of events into the light of date. I just hate all the inefficiency.

And no one assigned me the task or even gave me permission. I use the implied permission of being invited to the meeting to send out a quick recap. I list issues, decisions, and actions and send those out as immediately after the meeting as possible. I’m sure they aren’t always read, but my version of the meeting is at least on the official record and I can point people to them to start resolving issues and getting things done. It also helps me pay close attention instead of reading email… also an important benefit.

4. Assume a “Yes” in Emails

I think I read this in an article someone posted on LinkedIn. Unlike 1-3 which I saw modeled for me by one of my best bosses ever, this was something I never noticed anyone around me doing (though they probably were.) The idea is to assume that the recipient wants to do what you want them to do. You state your request. Take a breath. Imagine they said yes. State the next step. And thank them.

Seem presumptuous? Maybe. But that can always write back and tell you no, but they probably won’t. They’ll probably appreciate your clear, short, positive communication style and silently thank you for not wasting their time with a back and fourth email chain.

So in practice it’s: 

Sally, 
We’d love to have your feedback on our documentation. Jane is going to start copying you on drafts and incorporating your feedback into her deliverables. 

Thanks!
Emily

Instead of:

Sally, 
I’m hoping you can help us out with some of our documentation reviews. Do you think it would be possible for you to comment on Jane’s drafts? If so, I’ll ask her to copy you. We’d really appreciate your feedback and Jane could really benefit from your strong eye for detail.

Thanks!
Emily

And:

Emily, 
I’d really like to help, but I have a lot going on at the moment. For starters, I receive nearly 100 emails a day that I have to read and respond to. Please ask Jane to copy me, but I made need to ask Bob to help out as well. 

Thanks, 
Sally

And of course:

Sally, 
That’s fantastic. Thank you so much for your flexibility. Why don’t I set up a meeting with the four of us to discuss the project timing and needs so we’re all on the same page. 

Thanks, 
Emily

There are some caveats. First, never make it seem like a command. In my first made up example, Jane could always reply that she’s too busy and I try to leave room for that. The fact that she’d have to type that in an email and send it to me is the same whether I assume yes or not, it just saves her (and me) the follow up emails. Second, don’t be a bully. If you don’t think the recipient will want to the thing you’re asking, you’ve got to sell your request a bit more. What’s in it for them? Why are they your only hope? How will you make it up to them? Etc. Third, if it’s a big request and/or you know the person will want to do what you’re asking, maybe you shouldn’t ask over email. Just think through the objections and have a call or face to face instead.

5. Say “No” Sometimes

So, in the last section I said that Sally could just say no, right? But Sally, unlike you or, ahem, me, has a problem saying no. In fact, she thinks she’s saying no, but other people don’t take no for an answer. She feels like things are always piling up and she can’t ever focus on long-term goals. Sound familiar? Of course not.

Sally has two choices: live in hell forever or figure out why other people get to say no and she doesn’t. It’s a long road full of introspection, successes, and failures, but it is worth the trip. Everyone has to do things they don’t want to do, but no one should resign themselves to living that way all the time.

What helped me with this was having lots of recruiters email me about jobs. They weren’t necessarily jobs I wanted, but they were routine enough for me to feel more fearless. We’ve lived through rough economic times and getting fired is horrible even in the best economy. Fear of being seen as “not a team player” held me back for a long time. So, with the fear removed, I started practicing saying no.

It’s hard. You can’t just say you’re busy — everyone is busy. You can’t ask your boss to pick your priorities for you (unless you want to be where you are forever), but you do have to prioritize. And you simply cannot waffle between yes and no or you’ll lose credibility. Saying no is an evil trick that relies on you having a lot of the other tricks mastered.

To say no, people have to trust you. You have to be delivering on your commitments routinely so no one questions your commitment or work ethic.

You also need to be able to show what your priorities are where you are in terms of your currently planned work. After you clearly say no, state the tradeoffs. The no has to benefit the organization more than saying yes and you have to communicate that.

And if your no never works, think about leaving. Even if you don’t take a job right away, the feeling of being valued and desirable by another organization might help you feel more confident. And that can be magic.

6. Put Meetings on the Calendar

Whining about your calendar is so over. I’ve been a fairly booked up person for as long as I can remember and you just have to find the Zen in it. But just like confidence might be the magic ingredient for successfully saying no, control over meeting times helps with the whole Zen calendar thing.

Most of the meetings on my calendar are things I put there. Whether they are holding spots for me to do actual sit-down-and-focus work or conversations with other people, I am generally the person to blame. This helps me on so many levels.

First, I don’t feel trapped by others. The minute someone starts talking about getting together, I offer to set up the appointment. This puts me in control of the time, location, and allows me to factor in any time I need to prep or move things around to accommodate it. No one is going to take my needs into consideration more than me.

Second, I can’t add other people, reschedule, or cancel without having to ask someone else. Sure it means I get the “can you please add Sally” or “can we do 3pm instead of 4″ emails, but I’d much rather deal with those than have to ask and wait for someone else. Control freak? You bet.

Third, I’m proactive about getting things on the calendar. Since I don’t want someone else to do it, I make a point of getting things scheduled quickly. I hate it when I ask for a status on someone and I’m told, “well, Sally said she’d set up a meeting but I haven’t seen the invite yet, I’ll ping her and see what’s up.” So much inefficiency. Why wait for Sally? Why let her inefficiency make you look inefficient? Just put the damn meeting on the schedule.

Last, I get to have time for “real work.” Back at UPS, they used to have management classes all about using a day planner. That was out by my time, but the behavior that stuck was using the calendar to create time for work. So, I often schedule an hour or two a day that allows me to get a big block of work done.  Sometimes I have to move it, but again, I’m in control of what that trade off is and can plan around it.

7. Choose One Person a Day to be Extra Nice To

This is not a “how to win friends and influence people,” kind of thing. It’s self-serving, but not because I want other people to owe me one. It’s really just a way I’ve tried to incorporate my philosophy in life to my work life. That is, “Life is tough and people should be nicer.”

And I don’t necessarily get this done every day, but I do look for opportunities. Sometimes, it means listening to a coworker about a problem I can’t solve, but can just empathize about. Sometimes, it’s sending a nice note to someone thanking them for their work. Sometimes, it’s actually doing some unplanned work to help someone else with theirs. Whatever it is, I make an effort to be nice.

It can feel forced at first, but the more you do it, the more normal it becomes. I know doing these things doesn’t mean I great person, but I do hope every one in a while someone else’s day is made a little brighter.

8. Provide Status Updates Before You’re Asked

If you’re a project manager, you have routine status reports and know the value of this. What you want is to be showing progress and preventing countless questions from countless stakeholders all trying to get a handle on what’s going on. You also want to make sure that you know where you stand at regular intervals.

There rest of us have a lot to learn from project managers. The very worst thing in the world is to be asked the status of something and not know. It happens, of course, because you’re busy working and not tracking your work to your plan everyday. But the message it sends is that you don’t understand the larger organizational picture and how you fit into it.

When we get a status request from our boss, we generally grumble and stop what we’re working on to get it done. The general feeling of people is, “I can’t possibly get all my work done and do all these status reports.” (So factor that into your estimate.) Your boss is probably asking because someone is asking her or she thinks someone might ask her soon and doesn’t want to have no answer.

Why wait for that? If your organization doesn’t mandate a format, choose one that’s low effort (like exporting a To Do list from a productivity app) and commit (on your calendar) to doing to at regular intervals. At the very least, if you’ve recently crossed a major milestone, send out a communication about it so you don’t get lots and lots of emails asking for a status.

Unless you have to, don’t commit to a schedule that’s too frequent for you to comfortably keep up. Simply try to anticipate the needs of your manager and colleagues and address them without them asking.

9. Remove Your Emotion From Your Communication

I used to be a product/project manager (surprise, surprise!) in addition to an interaction designer. While I loved the control it gave me, it’s also a job filled with stress, broken promises, and having to take the fall for other peoples’ failings. From the outside observer, I appeared good at it, but I will admit that I was a mess of anger and anxiety.

Despite my love – hate relationship with the job itself, I knew it was a great learning opportunity. And the primary lesson was that my feelings came out in my communications with others – even email – and if they were negative, they negatively impacted my team.

And, of course, this one still bites me from time to time. We’re emotional animals and sometimes we get fired up. The big picture of your emotional state is what really affects people. Some thing to avoid are:

  • Getting so wrapped up in an issue or project emotionally that you can’t focus on anything else (and are visibly distracted in meetings, etc.)
  • Sending long, scrawling emails at the wee hours of the morning showing that you aren’t able to relax and let it go — even at home.
  • Replying all in an email thread in order to call attention to someone’s shortcomings instead of addressing and individual directly.
  • Running around like your hair’s on fire and snapping at others who aren’t as emotionally infected in the issue.
  • Repeatedly pointing out that people are going to need to be more committed or work more hours to meet your expectations instead of motivating them to do so on their own.
  • Telling people how busy you are all.the.time.

Being too cool and calm all the time is not good either. You shouldn’t seem impervious to the problems that naturally arise at work, but you should be able to rise above them. Or at the very least, appear to do so.

10. Use Your Superpower in Negotiations

I’ve seen good negotiators and I’ve seen bad negotiators. But mainly, I’ve seen really bad negotiators who think they’re good. And those people have typically been the ones to offer me advice over the years. I’ve taken their input with a whole shaker of salt, but I’ve also done my best to learn along the way.

I took a few management and organizational theory and communication classes back in school, so I’ve always known the basic tenet that a successful negotiation means both sides win. But, in real life, I find that most people go into a negotiation unwilling to give up anything and expecting the other side to cave. If that works for you, congratulations, you’re an asshole. And no matter how successful you get, that will always be true.

My discipline requires that I’m able to understand and address people’s needs using a variety of research methods. One of my favorite is the one-on-one interview. And often I get people to tell me things they shouldn’t and later don’t even remember telling me. I’m not doing it maliciously, but I am able to get people talking.

So, when I realized that I needed to be a better negotiator, I  naturally used that skill. Not to dig up dirt, but to truly understand what the issues and concerns of the other party are. This doesn’t necessarily work with complete strangers (or car dealers), but with people I already have a working relationship with, I find this to be the best strategy.

Once I understand the other side, I share mine. I try to make it as unemotional as possible, but I do try to explain what I need to walk away with meet my objectives. After a few, “What if we tried,” or “Could we move a few dates,” I can usually find the common ground.

This honest approach doesn’t always make my manager happy. Generally, I think people above me want me to be a bit more ruthless and force my point of view onto others. I have no problem selling an idea I believe in and engaging in arguments of fact in order to get change someone’s mind. But I won’t ignore the other side completely.

I could never be happy doing that, so I’ve adapted a negotiating style that’s successful without compromising my values.

CX Vision and Planning

Experience_Design_Mental_Model_v4

 

Remember this?

I recently had the opportunity to contribute some Venn diagrams to a piece in Information Week.  As some of you know, I sort of dig Venns. So, it was a great experience and I came away with all sorts of ideas and a nudge to get back to writing.

My first thoughts when I read the draft of Coverlet Meshing’s piece were just around how much I agreed with him. And then a little despair over all the organizations I’ve worked in and for that have created boundaries of ownership. They were only trying to make sure nothing fell through the cracks, but they destroyed overlaps. Those overlaps are where the really important customer experiences live and where most companies’ CX visions need to be implemented. While I love working on software that integrates to bridge the gaps, I know the success of those products will be realized only when companies change.

Another idea that came to me as I was building as Venns flew back and forth over email, was how useful the exercise of creating them could be to channel planners. Much of my love for Venns come from how useful they are in client presentations for explaining the concept of “synergy” with out having to use the awful word. Now, I think I could have used them as part of the planning process itself. Place my channels in the big circle, my goal in the center, and plan my channels (and transitions/overlaps) toward that goal.

I’m going to come up with a realistic blogging goal and try to put a little more flesh on each of these ideas. For now, I’m really just thrilled that I got to be a part of this conversation.

 

Politicizing the Moment

I made cookie dough tonight. It has to be refrigerated for 24 hours before baking, so it had to be tonight even though it’s the last thing I actually wanted to do. What I want to do is have a meaningful dialog about gun control. I’m sorry, but how many more 5 -year-olds need to be murdered by an assault rifle in their kindergarten classroom 11 days before Christmas before we do something. For fuck’s sake.

Over of Facebook, I’m being implored by my friends not to politicize the moment and simply hug my own child a little tighter tonight. Perhaps they are sincerely trying to focus on what matters. Or maybe, their own political agendas — the ones that favor easy access to human-killing machinery — are better served by letting this blow over a little. Either way, not this time time!

When 14-year-old  Emmet Till was brutally savagely murdered in Mississippi for flirting with a white woman, the moment was too big to ignore. Political action is difficult and our daily lives — things like baking cookie’s for your husband’s team at work — prevent us from doing what we know is right. But sometimes, tonight maybe, something happens that reminds you that the country you’re living in must change.

These jolts have happened throughout our nation’s history. They shake us awake and make political action not just necessary, but inescapable. Suddenly, putting your child to bed at exactly 8:30 PM isn’t so important because you have a blog post that has to be written. Or a meeting to organize. Or a PAC to fund.

As a mother of a soon-to-be-5-year-old, I could not empathize more with the parents who lost their precious little babies today. Their loss could have been my loss. I could be looking at presents under my Christmas tree for a child who would never open them and feeling like my world was crumbling.  I wouldn’t be thinking about gun control because it would be too late for it to matter for me. In a few months or more, I’d probably want to prevent my sorrow from ever being another mother’s sorrow.

But it didn’t happen to me. I don’t have to wait for grieving to end before I take action. I have my beautiful son and all the will in the world to keep him safe. And there are mothers and fathers all over the country who feel the same. In this moment, we have a duty to take action.

Happy Birthday, Kurt Vonnegut

I’m reading “Breakfast of Champions” and in it, Kurt Vonnegut talks about the difference between Armistice Day and Veterans Day.

“I will come to a time in my backwards trip when November eleventh, accidentally my birthday, was a sacred day called Armistice Day.

When I was a boy, and when Dwayne Hoover was a boy, all the people of all the nations which had fought in the First World War were silent during the eleventh minute of the eleventh hour of Armistice Day, which was the eleventh day of the eleventh month.

It was during that minute in nineteen hundred and eighteen, that millions upon millions of human beings stopped butchering one another. I have talked to old men who were on battlefields during that minute. They have told me in one way or another that the sudden silence was the Voice of God. So we still have among us some men who can remember when God spoke clearly to mankind.

Armistice Day has become Veterans’ Day. Armistice Day was sacred. Veterans’ Day is not.

So I will throw Veterans’ Day over my shoulder. Armistice Day I will keep. I don’t want to throw away any sacred things.

What else is sacred? Oh, Romeo and Juliet, for instance.

And all music is.”

This Banner Works If You Do

Hi! I know it’s been a while, but I just had an extremely frustrating experience with a banner ad from Nike and I have to share.

It appeared in Yahoo! Mail just a few minutes ago. The big type caught my eye. Nike is a big brand (you may have heard of them), so I paid attention expecting to witness a phenomenal banner execution that I could learn from.

Wow. No.

I’ve been running in Vibram’s Five Fingers for over a year and don’t expect to be buying a traditional running shoe for a long time. And when I did wear traditional running shoes, Nike wasn’t my brand of choice– the fit is never right for me. All this to say, maybe I’m not in their “target audience” and that’s why I’m not getting their strategy.

But let’s say that being a women 25-35 who runs regularly (or almost regularly in the last few, hot months) and subscribes to Runner’s World does makes me a qualified target. The media buyer gets some points for the placement.

That is where my compliments for this ad and brand experience end.

So, I was curious, “What is Nike claiming its shoe and I can do together to yield awesome fitness results?” Well, I didn’t find out by moving my mouse over the banner. No, the only interactivity in the banner is to change the color of the shoe. I’m offended. I’m sure some research firm found that color is the number one factor in the athletic shoe buying journey of women and it seemed like this was all Nike needed to do to sell me the shoes. But, seriously? What does this shoe do? I care about the color, but there are actually other factors in my decision-making. My female brain is able to hold at least 3-4 purchase criteria at once. Okay, I’m easily offended, but you’re trying to sell me some sort of shoe technology, so at least treat me like I have a brain.

I certainly didn’t want to reward Nike, their creative agency, and the research firm with a clickthrough to their site, but I did. Still in research mode, I thought, “Maybe there is an awesome site experience that isn’t done justice by this ad that I should check out and maybe find out what these shoes do.” My expectations are way too high.

Click 1

Okay, wouldn’t you expect to get to a page of a website that contained, if not a full explanation of the shoe, at least a passing mention of it? Well, my friend, you’re expectations are far too high as well. I was dumped on the front page of Shop Nike with no mention of the shoes in the banner. Luckily the site uses a traditional navigation approach, so I figured I was only one more click away.

Click 2

Okay Nike, you’re really making your potential customers work now. If clicking on “Women” in the navigation bar doesn’t take me to a page containing picture, or at least a mention, of these wonder shoes in fabulous colors, I’m pretty sure you don’t care about me at all. I’m starting to form very negative impressions about your brand. In fact, this whole adventure took so long that I forgot the name of the shoe and had to go back to my inbox and look at the banner to remind myself. I promise you Nike, if I wasn’t into experience strategy, I wouldn’t have the attention span. I soldiered on because I was interested in how hard it would be to actually find the shoe on the site.

Click 3

So, the shoe content area on the page didn’t contain the name of the shoe I was hunting (Trainer One, which I learned back at my inbox), so I clicked the “more” option expanding the module as you see above. The Trainer One wasn’t there, so I actually clicked again on “all women’s shoes.”

Click 4

Finally, the mythical shoe! And it’s in the first position in the page. So, selling the Trainer One is obviously a priority for the Women’s Shoe division of Nike. I’d imagine their sales are far less than the Men’s Shoe division and the Clothing division which is why they don’t get to message on the homepage, but they should at least get a placement on the Women’s category page. Failing that, they should ensure that their Trainer One banners link here, where the shoe can be found quickly by interested visitors, or even better to the page that actually answers the question, “What do the shoes do?” That page is one more click away.

Click 5

This is where I expected to land on my first click from my inbox. I was reading my e-mail, so you can assume that I might have better things to do than chase down a shoe whose benefits I don’t know (I mean, unless the colors are just super awesome…rolling eyes.) I’m not actually sure the benefits of the shoe are on this page. I basically took this screenshot and bailed to write this post. But, unless their strategy was to frustrate UX bloggers (or sometimes bloggers) to the point of writing about their shoe for a buzz boost, this whole experience was a complete failure.

Nike has the savvy and money to do this right. There is no excuse for how bad this experience is.

Experience Design is an Understanding – Help Me With Mine

About this version:

Goals

1. Explain what Experience Design is.
2. Describe who is involved in designing experiences.

I don’t think User Experience people own Experience Design — developers, graphic artists, clients create the space we work in and are more than stakeholders.

People
Getting to knowing the minds of others is classic UX space, but this sort of empathy is also practiced by designers, marketing professionals, and developers. But, simply knowing people and their needs does not create an experience.

Technology
How the experience will be built from design phase deliverables to final experience is just as important as People. Of course, the decisions about what technologies to use are complex and rely on an understanding of who the experience will reach and what it’s trying to accomplish for the business.

Business
At the most basic level, without someone to pay the bills, you can’t do much of anything. Whether it’s brand awareness or lead conversion, creation of an experience implies that there is a goal in mind that relates back to that investment.

Audience
Where a technology and people interface, you have an audience. If you choose a technology that few use, your audience is smaller. And if you pick a technology that lots of people use, you audience is larger, but perhaps the interactions you’ll be able to design for will be limited.

Medium
Where technology and business overlap you have a medium (or maybe a channel). The kind of technology selected for an experience has to suit the audience and the business. The technology that might provide the best experience may be too expensive for the business to invest in. We have to find the balance.

Commerce
I mean this in it’s largest sense. It could be e-commerce transactions, but discussion is commerce in a social experience.

Experience
This is where the technology, people, and business come together for an audience engaging in commerce within a medium. Yes?

Story
The definition of experience seems very cold and unemotional– almost like an e-commerce site’s checkout app. Story warms it up by adding the business’s story (brand), the people’s story (culture) and technology’s story (interaction.)

I feel like I’m getting closer, but please comment away!

Please Note: I put my previous post and versions of the model after the break to try and clean this post up a little for people who might be coming for the first time.  I’d create a new post, but the comments on this one have been so tremendously helpful and insightful that I don’t want to separate them from the updated model.

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Poll: When Will You Buy an iPad?

Can’t wait to see how the iPad wind is blowin’!