Creating A CX Culture Through Sprints

Knowledge / Inspiration

Creating A CX Culture Through Sprints

Continuous Design

Culture, oftentimes is the first step in allowing any organisational change within a business.
When Jasper Wu, joined U-Next this was his daunting task; to expand the design culture to include the users experience, journey and translating the insights from the research team. And to create interest within the business, his first step was to involve everyone (even management) in a design sprint.
In this talk, Jasper will talk through how he established his first design sprints in U-Next and how it has created a better understanding of their users, better overall team involvement and became a great tool to break the internal structural hierarchy.
He will explain:

  • How he started sprints? Who is involved?
  • What has worked and what hasn't?
  • How they adapted to remote design sprints?
  • Any future plans for improvement

Hello everyone. This is Jasper. Today I'm going to talk about the topics about creating the CX culture through Design Sprint. So, my name is Jasper. I come from Taiwan, I am Taiwanese, and currently I'm working in a company called U-next and also I'm the co-founder of the design consulting firm called Creative Mashimashi . So, if you're interested about my topic today
feel free to contact me on LinkedIn or Twitter. So, let me briefly share about what is U-next. U-next is a subscription-based video distribution platform. We not only have the video content. We also have the music and book service. Basically, it's like all-in-one entertainment service. You can watching, reading and listening on our platform. U-next also has a largest, biggest market share as a local OTT platform in Japan. Today, I'm going to talk about two things about CX culture and design sprint. I would like to share with you about my experience in U-next how I am using the design sprint to create the CX culture in the journey we are trying to build a better collaborative and a human-centred environment. Before I jump into the talk, I would like to ask you one question. What is the CX culture in your organization? Is it like Post-Its everywhere? You have a lot of Post-Its, a team is doing a brainstorming, doing a combined board, do an ideation. Or you have the creative space. If people can generate and creating a prototype or you have the framework like classic double diamond, like build a right product, build a product, right? Or even you have different type of framework, like Lean, Agile, design thinking. When you search on Google, you will find out like lean-agile design thinking with this chart. So basically the team were using design thinking to discover users pinpoint and finding a needs using Lean Startup to quickly validate their concept and using Agile and Scrum to quickly ship their product, their service, the feature, and get a feedback find the customer iterate it again and again. A lot of time, when the stakeholders or the organization invest this type of framework, we try to have different approach to have a better process to solving the problem and quickly shipping the product. However, there's no magic happening in those frameworks, and a lot of time stakeholders can not find the value of why we need to do that. We did an even building the better product, or even didn't build a better impact for the business. So I think the one part that's missing, is about understanding about the maturity, about UX and CX. So you can also find this online. We separate into four layer. The first one is awareness. Is the companies organization aware about the UX, CX or, and the second layer is like company willing to invest. How much money they put in the training, the budget for the different types of framework, for hiring, for the different type of designer, researcher, and specialists. And also, the third tier is about how companies think about planning and strategy when they're building the future plan. Do they think about CX and UX together or even for the DX? And also, the end of the maturity model, it's really about a culture change. And to make the culture change actually it takes very long time. And it's very hard to achieve because there's some part is missing. It's about people's mindset. When you think about the definition of the culture, I will briefly say it's like the way we behave, the way we work, we communicate, we collaborated with our colleagues and how we interaction with each other in organization, across different company. And also the value. We believe it's really based on this, it depends on you were decided your company culture. For me personally, I think the good CX culture, including these few things, human center and also collaborative, iterative and innovative. And one thing I just mentioned about, it's about the own mindset. Mindset changing is very hard and it takes a long time to change in people's behavior. It was long journey and also every company, every organization, start from different starting point. For example, you have huge organization, very big organization you try to do innovation. You are the small startup, you try to shipping your product, validate your concept, build, shipping the service quick, as soon as possible. Tasks in the market, or you are the mid-size firm, you try to improving your service, find growth on your product and service. A lot of time, every company started from very different point, right? When we're talking about the mindset change, it was very hard for different types of organization, no matter which size of organization you are in. As what I say, it's very long journey. And there's many traps. When on your journey, when you try to change in the CX culture and there's many potential trap you might facing. So today, I am going to do, share and explain with you. There's three types of traps. It might happening on your organization and how I use my experience to using design sprint, different types of sprint, to solving these three problems. These three problem we might be facing. The first one is about customer understanding. The second one is about culture and office politics. The third one is about speed and iteration. As what I say, you need some probe to ignite this CX culture change. And what I use is about the framework design sprint. You might heard about design sprint before. Basically, it was separated into six different type of phase for an understanding, defined a problem, sketch, decided idea, and we build a prototype. And test it to validate our concept. We schedule this six phase into five days, and then a lot of time when a team trying to run design sprint, it really helping you to solving a void of barrier. I try to, I mentioned above. So I will explain with you, from our next slide. So the first thing is about customer understanding, right? So nowadays to be honestly, there's having too much data, around the office. So when you can see that the stakeholders, everyone, the decision maker, a product owner, a PM business analysis, right. We always surrounding by a lot of dashboard, Excel sheet, tons of data, most of the time. A lot of stakeholders, they are missing very important insight from this big data. Actually, when we surrounded by this number of big data, actually it really pushing us farther and farther away from the real customer voice. This theory is called big data and seek data proposed by Tricia Wang. So you can find her Ted Talk online, it's really awesome and very insightful. I really recommend it. So she mentioned about a lot of organization. When they making decision based on the big data, they kind of ignore that why it happened from the real user behavior user voice. It just make everything farther and farther away. So, for me, to get into user insight. It's actually, the cost is much more last, then you invest in the dashboard or data, big data. So actually what you need to do is just set up. You can start a survey, I'll start a user interview, set out a camera up serving your user, their behavior, how they interaction and listen, found their pinpoint. When you start to do that, you will find out there's a lot of different thing, different insight you will found. And this really helpful, to create a good CX culture when you really care about the customer problem. However, there's a lot of time when a lot of organization that hired a researcher and it started to re-research, but there's nothing happened. This is some part is missing. So what I want to say, actually, this very important part, when I try to run the research. And how can we using the research data to let the decision maker to understanding the customer more in holistic perspective. So actually, the missing part is about the sharing session. A lot of time when the researcher or the analysis, when you finish a report, they don't have a proper chance to share with the stakeholders and stakeholder you're surrounded by old data. It's very hard for them to make decision. So when I was in U-next I find out sprint can really help about that. Let me introduce about the research sprint. So when I joined U-next in 2019, basically we have nothing. We don't have anything like a research. We don't have the user voice. We don't have the interview or user insight. So I started everything from zero. So basically people don't understand anything about it. And that's really lack of awareness about user and customer voice. So I decided, I want to run the research sprint. So what is research sprint? So basically research sprint is a one day stream. The biggest purpose for the research sprint is try to get the
stakeholders to understanding customer voice, and customer insight more holistically. We understanding their viewpoint and we try to solving their problem together. So research sprint, of course, you need to start from research. So basically I stay, spend one to three weeks to find recruiting user interview, collecting the data, analysis, creating report. And what after I finish a report, I organize this research sprint. The biggest purpose of what I say is to let stakeholders to get awareness of the real user voice. And also the good thing is we turn the insight to the actionable ideas. This is very important for people to understanding how valuable insight can turn to valuable and actionable idea. So basically, we focus on sharing. The first day, in the morning we do the insight sharing. How might we session? How might we create something? And we do the journey mapping and part is sharing Crazy Eights do the
ideation, brainstorming solution, sketch, vote and pick at the end of day. Again, this is not focusing on building the prototype and validate found the customer voice. The biggest purpose is learn from our customer and view things from different perspective. So when is the timing to run the research sprint? Actually, when you realize there's a lack of awareness of the user voice around your organization, around your team, it's very a good time to organize a research sprint gathering people who is interesting about this topic and discussion about it, and showed them what is a real user voice, what is insight for data? What is the comprehensive data for them to everyone to do ideation brainstorming together? What kind of topics really good for research sprint? So from my experience in U-next, basically, I think find out a biggest elephant in the room. Why did I say that? Because usually the biggest elephant in the room, it's really hard, to find the insight on in the big data. And this is the problem. People are unwilling to touch it because too complicated, too difficult to solving the problem on these time. So when you try to run the design sprint and a research sprint, and you pick up these topics, actually, it's really helping the stakeholders rethinking about the problem from different perspective. So the research sprint really helping for your team to have a better understanding for the customer. And this is the quote I want to share with everyone. This is crow quote from Tom Chi. So he mentioned in 2018, design sprint conference, nobody changing their behavior for the neutral outcome. So basically I put this in my mind. So every time when I run the research sprint or any type of sprint, I will oberserving how the user behavior. How the stakeholders, how was the room ambient? How has the atmosphere look like? Which Steps works? Which steps not work? So understanding how could we improving for the next or different sprint next time. The second traps you might fail, doing on your journey to creating a CX culture. It's about the culture issue and office politics. So basically with office politics and culture issues, a lot of time really slow everything down, because of stakeholders is really hard for us to find a consensus. And there's a lot of bias because everyone's staying on different perspective. A lot of time, you need to wait for approval while you are in the different type of communication with different stakeholders or everyone has some politics going on. You really slow a lot of things down. You can not moving everything forward quickly with the quick speed and have a better teamworks. So this is the concept, the theory mentioned by the anthropologist Edward T. Hall, so he has a book mentioned about Beyond The Culture is talking about high context culture and low context culture. So one thing, low context culture, it's like American and Australian high context culture. It's like China in Japan. So basically, I came to Japan in 2017. I realized there is really total different, even environment and the culture when I experienced the America or in Taiwan. Let me give you some example. For example, the language issue, the language different. So this is a very simple phrase when you can hear about like Japanese it's called "Hai". So actually for "Hai", when you're using Google translate, actually it's "yes". But a lot of times it didn't mean yes, I agree with you. It just means 'I heard it'. It didn't mean anything. And the other part is about "kangai de oku" so when people say it about this words, when you using Google translate, you will find out they want to say it's, I will think about them, but actually it's not. It means they try to sometimes, and most of the time we use it. It means 'we try to reject you'. In the polite way actually it's no. So in this high context culture, there's a lot of like nuance in the conversation or in the room. Because of this it's really hard for people have to better teamwork communication during the development process, or we try to have a better ideation. A lot of people, a lot of times we will say to people, if you don't understanding the atmousphere, we will say you are "Kangaete oku' You cannot reading the ambience, understanding the nuance around the room. So it's very important to have understanding about what should be noticed during a conversation in this high context culture. The other thing is about decision-making process. This is the one type of decision making process in some culture. So basically, when I was in different low context culture, a lot of time, we try to generate some idea, have some, discussion. We just bring everyone in room. We can negotiation and discussion and debating about which one is right, which one is wrong,.But a lot of time in different types of culture, before the official meeting, people were starting to have different meeting with these stakeholders. And then have the other meeting was to be stakeholders and a third meeting with different types of stakeholders. When the official meeting is happening, actually no one is saying something disagreement, because everyone just raised their hand and agree with the proposal because the decision is already made before the official meeting. This is really time consuming. It takes a long time. And most of the time based on this type of the decision-making process, most of the time we find out the solution is the compromise solution based on every stakeholders. It's not the base solution for our customer. Because of the culture issue, office politics issue it's really hard for the teamworks. So the sprint really can helping this problem. When I facing this problem in Japan's culture, I tried to organize the spring called ideation sprint. The most important things for the ideation spring, the biggest purpose is, generate ideas, find different stakeholders from different perspective. So I organized this two days ideation sprint. First, of course, we need to contact the research, gathering the data, gathering the information, gathering the insight we can find for the problem. And we spend a first day try to understanding this problem deeply. It's very similar to what we have for the research sprint. We also have, the second day is about ideation day. It's for focused on generating ideas. As what I say for the ideation sprint, it's very important to gathering all the stakeholders. So most of the time I will invite an engineer. I will invite the business side, I will invite a designer, invite a PM, stay in the same room we try to figure it out, what is most feasible ideas? So, when I said about ideation sprint is not really some impossible idea or moonshot idea. It really wants to find someone, some idea is, actionable. So it is very important to invite engineer or a development team in the room, because it's really helpful for us to think about the feasibility part. What is the timing to run the ideation spring? That's what I mentioned. When you find out there's a kind of silo across the company, lacking of the trust or slow in a process. When you feel this very hard for the teamwork communication, I think if really had a good timing for you to run ideation sprint. What kind of topics is good for ideation spring? I think the topic when you relate it to most of the stakeholders, and it's also a mid-costs, we can try to realize in a very short period of time and also have the big impact. Why do we need to pick up the big impact? Actually, because you invite most of the stakeholders in the room, we want to show them how much this sprint this can create a different outcome than before. So it's very important to invite all the stakeholders, finding it out the mid cost project and have a big impact. Because of the design sprint factors there's a feed-like a feature called Work Together Alone. So most of the time when we do ideation due to brainstorming, we work together, but we stay in the same room, but we work alone. With work together alone, it's really helping us for solving the problem. What I mentioned is about the language issue, because a lot of time we don't need too much communication. We just generate idea for our side and we're sharing our concept, what we think and with the stakeholders after we finished the ideation. The other part is about Silence Voting. A lot of time to find out the best solution, we need the silence voting. It's really helping us to find out what is the best solution for our customer. Instead of find out the best solution, what the boss really like, or the highest paid people, really like, and or find out a compromise solution. Of course, we would provide the decision maker, have the final call, final decision for the final ideas. One thing. I think it really need to be careful. And especially in this high context culture, and this is a phrase came from, transplanting the tree. So basically when we try to transplanting the tree, we need to very be careful about the roots. When we try to move it, the tree from A position to the B position , if we didn't take care of the roots, it might, the tree, maybe lack of the nutrition and it might be dead in the end of the new place. Right? So the, the phrase is really, when we try to change the culture, when we try to have the organization mindset change, we need to think, especially in this high context culture, we need to be careful about what we do. So we need to spend more time for communication with the people who really care about the problem, who care about the issue. So this is a phrase called, "Nemawashi" in Japan. So basically when we tried to do some culture change, do some big project. We spend a lot of time and explain with stakeholders and try to get their support to what we want to do. It's very similar how you transplant the tree. You want to protect the roots. Well, when we try to have the culture shift culture change. The last thing I want to, say, it's about speed and iteration. So actually this, from, from my perspective, this is Cause for Everything. When we try to have a better iterative culture with the good speed, most of the time we are waiting for the feedback. Even your organization have the scrum, you shipping your product, shipping your feature, like a bi-weekly or bi-weekly basis. However, we need to evaluate it. We need to collect the data, get a user feedback, maybe one month, three months later to get on the feedback. When we tried to get in a feedback, in monthly basis, it's really make us to, for us to making iterative culture. Sometimes a lot of time, which we are waiting for the next meeting. So during the quick feedback, quick, that data from the customer, from the stakeholders. It's really the, I think in the sprint really can helping you to solving this problem. So last sprint, I want to share it's about the Normal Design Sprint. The normal design sprint actually, we focus on making idea happen and we quick validated and learn from our customer. So this is the five day spring framework. Of course, we need to spend some time one or three weeks for our research for these topics. And we stay, spend the day zero for the problem framing, try to figure it out. What is the biggest problem we tried to solve? And then we do that information sharing, sketch, storyboarding do the ideation, and then we generate a prototype and testing. This is a framework design sprint, 3.0 designed by the Design Sprint Academy. So you can also find this resource online. It's really helpful for you. If you trying to run the full design sprint, and I think design sprint 3.0 is really helpful for your organization to generate ideas. And then quick validate with the customer. So when is the timing to run design sprint? As what I say, at the beginning of the big project. When your team don't know where to go, should we go this way or go this direction? Run the full design sprint. Try to helping your team learn from the customer. Get a feedback quickly, tried to be more iterative. What kind of topics? For me, when you have the big bet is a big budget, like big project or the big renewal or redesign for the existing project is really helpful for the team to stay together in a same room without any distraction. And then focusing on solving this problem and bring the prototype and share within validated with the customer in the end of the day. Most important things because of the designs sprint have the time control, even each steps in each day in each process. We also have the very strict timeframe is about the last day the user is waiting for your prototype to test. So, most of the stakeholders will feel the pressure, I need to do this at the end of the day. I need to building something. I need to come up with ideas. I need to build something to share with my client or the customer. Right. So it's very important with this time control, it really helping the team to moving forward quickly, making decision quickly. They build a prototype and get a data as soon as possible. And we can pivot or moving for the next steps. So then we bring you to the conclusion. So basically when you try to have the CX culture change, or you might have the culture shift, you try to be more customer center. You try to be more collaborative, teamwork. You try to have more iterative speed. Try to start it with the design sprint is really good for you. A good probe for you to start it. The culture change. So today, I mentioned about three types of sprint. The first one is about research sprint, second one is about ideation sprint, the third one is about design sprint. It really helping the team to more customer focus, better teamworks and quick validation. When people ask me, how design sprint can change people's behavior? To be honestly, based on my personal experience in Japan, I have to say, one design sprint can change anything you have to do last but often. So the quote I mentioned in the previous slide, I mentioned no one was changing their behavior, for the neutral outcome. So try to observing, how the people interacts each other and behave during the sprint and try to improving any every time where you have the new sprint. So based on my personal experience, when I was in Japan, because of the culture issue, the language issue. I tried to rearrange some component inside design sprint and designed a research sprint ideation sprint, and also the full design sprint. So it's very important for you to also think about what is your culture and what is your context in your organization, and try to customize it, inside your organization. So last thing I want to say is about 'Be as water my friend'. So this is about my experience in Japan, and I customize it a little bit based on different purpose. So, I think for those tool or framework, it should be more flexible, depending on the culture. I wish, you can learn from my experience how you can customize things and yeah thanks for your attention. My name is Jasper. Thanks for your time. Thank you.