Agile in non-tech environments – Empathy mapping with Joe public in Ibrahim Hyderi, Karachi

Combining Agility and Empathy to better understand people and change Building on from my previous post on empathy maps it seems apt to share a real world example of how a non-technical team utilises empathy maps. To build deep understanding of the target audience’s issues and to address their pains. 

For those not familiar with Peace Through Prosperity, the organisation works with people engaged in micro-enterprises; such as street-cart or pavement based green grocers, barbers, cobblers and food vendors. Peace Through Prosperity enables them to build a better future for themselves, their family and community through vocational education and coaching. Continue reading

Pause, reflect – lets celebrate journey of a team #SocialTransformation #Heroes

Team

What better way to spend a Sunday in Karachi than reminiscing and sharing Peace Through Prosperity (BringPTP)’s success with y’all.

Let me set the scene real quick!

2014

  • Peace Through Prosperity (BringPTP) brings its social transformation programs to Karachi. See this if you’re not familiar with BringPTP’s work.
  • BringPTP set’s about building the delivery team for what is to be the largest engagement in what is and remains a very challenging engagement.
  • Attempt 1 fails fast, and the delivery team is down to three! that reflection is for another post but it’s worth stating; for this program BringPTP hired MBAs, Tech and Social sciences graduates, of the seven hires all but one made the cut in the field, it was a brutal sprint and bloody retrospective!… and yes there was a lot of drama!
  • Attempt 2 yields a team of 9 all potential (very rough) gems, all hired from within marginalized communities they are soon to engage. There are two team members  with Higher Education qualifications, some have secondary schooling but others are only literate. None have ever been through any formal professional training of any sort or undertaken anything like this. Overall the team is hired on their street smarts, courage and a hunger for socio-economic transformation in their communities.
  • The newly formed team’s training and coaching lasts for two weeks with key areas of focus being; BringPTP’s programs and Agility (Scrum), Majority of the training and coaching delivered was in the field itself.
  • The team takes a cautious start to the project. There are many failures along the way, the team inspects, learns, adapts and keeps moving forward whilst delivering phenomenal, phenomenal results!
  • The team isn’t quite self organizing yet, but they are well on their way!

Continue reading

Applying Agile beyond tech – key ingredients

Ingredient

This post started of as an email to Yashin Lin from Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation, Yashin reached out for advise on applying agile practices in non-technical teams in the social/international development sector.  This post is a guide I intend to keep building on, so do check back for updates or subscribe to be kept updated.

Introducing agility to teams, programs and organisations is less about selecting the appropriate agile framework and more about changing the culture, mindset of the teams and the organisation designing and delivering such programs of work.

Agile is a mindset, a worldview, not a set of how-to’s. However there are procedures and practices that teams in the development sector can borrow from Agile frameworks; Continue reading

User-centered content design with empathy maps

DrupalCamp-BE-logo-intro Thank you to the organisers at DrupalCamp Ghent for the invitation and the opportunity to share an awesome tool that for me is the foundation of user-centered design.  Empathy Map as a tool was developed by Dave Gray at XPLANE  and since then has found its way from design agencies to digital transformation consultancies as we all seek out better tools and techniques to understand and empathise with our audiences and markets to design and build products and services they want. Empathy is the ability to understand and share the feelings of another, it is a close cousin of but not the same as sympathy.

Using the Empathy mapping technique we develop better understanding of our audiences by understanding:

  • Who they are in their world (their persona and current state)
  • Where they would like to be (their desired future/altered state)
  • What influences them (social and otherwise)
  • What they say their aspirations are (who and how they influence)
  • What feelings and motivations guide their behaviour

You can use Empathy maps at a macro level say for a brand or at a micro level for a user type/segment, you can download a blank Map to work with here, and there are two sample maps to help guide you; one for a persona seeking content to help inform his/her decision to buy a particular brand of a Digital SLR and another sample Empathy map that is  somewhat left field. (these are large SVG files best viewed in a PDF viewer post download)

As Drupal/CMS consultants we can deploy Empathy maps to better inform our client’s content strategy by using developed Empathy maps to narrowcast messaging at specific content touch points. If you’d like to explore how Empathy maps can empower your team to drive innovation, improve stakeholder engagement or address unmet user needs feel free to reach out.

If you think you have benefited from what has been shared then #GiveBack; please do the absolute minimum and follow @Bringptp on twitter, like them on Facebook and share their videos from Vimeo, thats the least you could do… but if you like… don’t let me stop you there, you can donate here; 2015 is a big year for Bring Peace Through Prosperity they need to raise US $100,000- to work with another 500 entrepreneurs of circumstances and transform their communities and society.

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