The process behind designing a product is all about understanding the goals, the audience and what it's intended to do. It doesn't matter if it's a chair or a mobile app, the process is very similar, what changes are the tools and materials.
Our friends from InVision recently released the latest from their Design Genome Project Report in collaboration with Intuit: Designs for delight. A perspicacity on how the teams from Intuit work together to empower their customers through storytelling with insights that would shape strategy, action and things you would do for your consumers. They initiated a process that would generally start from these insights (discover the "why") and with the help of InVision tools. They were able to go further and broadly into their experiments through reviews, refinements, iterations, implementation, and everything-in-one-place.
I had the privilege and the honor to meet Stephen Gates, InVision’s Head of Design Transformation and Lionel Mohri, VP of Design Innovation Practices at Intuit for a little sit-down and asked them a few questions. For the interview, I will highlight some of the things we have talked about. But first I would like to thank both Stephen and Lionel for their time even with a busy schedule.
If you can create clarity through storytelling, it shapes strategy, action, and what you do for your customers. Because it’s connected to research, it’s believable and connected to what our employees are telling every day. - VP of Innovation Practices at QuickBooks Online Lionel Mohri
Intuit, makers of QuickBooks, TurboTax and Mint, is a financial software company that powers prosperity for consumers, small businesses and the self-employed. The HQ is based Mountain View, California, Intuit was founded in 1983 by Scott Cook and Tom Proulx and now employs 9,000 people worldwide through 19 locations in 9 countries.
After speaking with Stephen Gates, what struck me the most was I assumed that InVision started the initiative by attracting clients like Intuit into their functional Ecosystem; in order to change things within the organization. That is not what it actually happened. Intuit already had in place a vision and the iterating list of improvements to undertake. They just needed the right tool and InVision was their choice. InVision has proven to the industry and still does that a company can be a fully distributed company with employees in more than 20 countries around the world. Together, they were (and still!) on a mission to help make every digital experience magically better.
InVision would introduce a process technique called: "Design Thinking", whatever is your opinion on the subject. It's first of all, it's designed to NOT to be perfect. It's designed for teams to work smarter without putting too much effort. Let me elaborate, we all understand the "how", "what" and "why" but what if we don't. "Design Thinking" would provide an iterating process to basically understand your users better.
Empathize, Define, Ideate, Prototype, and Test.
That being said, I have personally experienced a work environment where even though we would understand these design process stages. Things wouldn't go near as smoothly, why? Large enterprises need to understand the importance of having a centralized design team and designers CAN reposition themselves through different structures of the organization or working in a temporary cross-functional team.
For me, the biggest benefit of storytelling is what takes you from thought to action. Ideas and insights are great, but how do you create enough of a connective tissue through execution so intent stays in tact
During our call, Lionel mentioned something that really sojourned with me and I would fancy sharing: "Be an advocate to your customers/users, create an excellence for craft and bring collaboration across all teams". I completely resonate with this mindset because at the end of the day, we all work hard for the same company. It's far from being a self-reliant act, let's structure our teams end to end this time.