Brandon Schauer

Jan 03

Things I’m proud of from 2013

I’m really looking forward to 2014. So it’s past time to say goodbye to 2013. Here’s a few things that I’m really proud of contributing to in 2014, if even in a small way.

The Relaunch of adaptivepath.com
I just stumbled across some rough initial sketches of this today. The great results were achieve by a lot of talented folks, including the people at Tomorrow Partners and our own Pam Daghlian, Rae Brune, Amber Reed, and many more. Go team.

This was an important step in telling the story about how we have been working successfully, and a change from how people thought about Adaptive Path.

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Adaptive Path’s Guide to Experience Mapping
Experience Mapping is a method we’ve been using to achieve a lot of great results at Adaptive Path. So we put together a guide about it. The guide combined many ideas from the bigger professional community and things we made up on our own, so we wanted to share back out what we’ve been doing.

Patrick Quattlebaum, Chris Risdon, Bryn Bowman, and several others took a rough idea and turned it into a wonderful guide. Great stuff.

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The Service Experience Conference
We launched a totally new conference this year, bringing together a diverse set of folks that all were thinking and working in similar ways. It just clicked. Jamin Hegeman, Jessica Blake, Nelly Wollenberg, and Chelsa Robinson all made it happen without blinking. Thanks to Dave Gray for headlining it.

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A handful of other highlights…

But mostly, the people
I’ve  enjoyed being a CEO far more than I anticipated. The delight I get is from helping connect people to opportunities and to each other. Plus seeing people grow other people is incredibly exciting. And given how we help other organizations, that’s been happening within and beyond Adaptive Path.

Some of the things I’ve enjoyed working with people on are listed above, but here’s a few more:

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So thanks everyone for a great 2013, but I’m really looking forward to 2014!

Feb 10

“Finally, in contrast to the fast paced world of minimal design where the mantra is “fail quickly,” Bentley’s user experience students take a more productive approach by “succeeding quickly” based on a deep understanding of users, design, and enabling technology.” — The Four Waves of User-Centered Design | UX Magazine

Jan 26

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Oct 31

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Aug 27

There’s lost of reasons why you settle for less than ideal solutions, so I try not to be critical of choices that I don’t know the backstory behind. But OMG.
Here’s a “Click to Refresh” button in the middle of a iphone app for United. How doth you error? Let us count the ways:
It’s a refresh button — how many refresh buttons do you see on iphone apps?
It says “click” — when was the last time you clicked on a iphone app? Did they port this from Windows or something?!?
It’s tiny — good luck on hitting the refresh button and not something else
It’s in the middle of the freakin’ screen — that’s just so weird and non-standard I have a hard time articulating just why it’s so wrong
We could also go into the arrow on the left of the button and a few other problems but, heh, I’m so glad they managed to mix the gel-button look with the Windows 95 gray button look. That must have been hard.
Taking off my snarky hat now. 

There’s lost of reasons why you settle for less than ideal solutions, so I try not to be critical of choices that I don’t know the backstory behind. But OMG.

Here’s a “Click to Refresh” button in the middle of a iphone app for United. How doth you error? Let us count the ways:

  1. It’s a refresh button — how many refresh buttons do you see on iphone apps?
  2. It says “click” — when was the last time you clicked on a iphone app? Did they port this from Windows or something?!?
  3. It’s tiny — good luck on hitting the refresh button and not something else
  4. It’s in the middle of the freakin’ screen — that’s just so weird and non-standard I have a hard time articulating just why it’s so wrong

We could also go into the arrow on the left of the button and a few other problems but, heh, I’m so glad they managed to mix the gel-button look with the Windows 95 gray button look. That must have been hard.

Taking off my snarky hat now. 

Mar 12

my most favorited tweet from MX Conference

UX managers design the process not the product. #mxconf12 Ian Swinson

— brandon schauer (@brandonschauer) March 5, 2012

Feb 10

You’ve heard of ‘Peak Oil.’ What about ‘Peak TV’?

Peak Oil is the idea that one day (soon) the world will top out on the amount of oil it can extract from the earth and it will start a decline. Maybe TV might soon hit its own peak where it’s no longer guaranteed engagement with an audience.

NYTimes covers a recent study showing that while TV is still American’s favorite pastime, use of the TV for entertainment is suddenly starting to drop with people ages 12 to 24 as they switch to other media channels (mobile) and activities (gaming):

It has long been predicted that these new media would challenge traditional television viewing, but this is the first significant evidence to emerge in research data. If the trends hold, the long-term implications for the media industry are huge, possibly causing billions of dollars in annual advertising spending to shift away from old-fashioned TV.

(Source: The New York Times)

Oct 20

The Business Case For (Or Against) Service Design

Today at the Service Design Network Conference in San Francisco I presented the Business Case For (Or Against) Service Design.

I care about service design because I come at it as a leader of an organization that design services for our clients. Therefore, it’s in my best interest to know how and why it delivers real value. The more value it creates, the more organization will seek out, use, and pay for our work in service design.

I believe strongly that the approaches and mindset of service design can bring about more human and more empathetic services that connect people and business in better ways. But to forward this potential I focused this presentation hard toward the numbers side to find the spaces where service design has the best economic impact.

Here’s a PDF of the presentation (19.7 MB).

The Business Case For (Or Against) Service Design - Title Slide

This presentation contains some updated versions of some of the market sizing work that I’ve shared in previous posts here. As always, these are my estimates based on the facts as I continue to collect them.

Oct 05

Q: who’s designing services? A: not service designers

I wanted to better pose the question that I ended yesterday’s post on market sizing for service design. Here goes:

chart of service design market sizing

If roughly half-a-billion dollars is spent on the design and planning of services in the U.S., then why are service designers only doing $70 million of that work? (And for the record, I think this is an extremely conservative guess at the total market size.)

I think the answer is clearly that other professionals, and possibly numerous different types of professionals with very different skills, are doing the work.

Oct 04

market sizing for service design, round 2

Based on some prior fact-finding, I constructed the following two estimates of the total U.S. market for service design, in dollars. They’re very rough, but the only attempt I’ve seen at doing it.

First, a top-down evaluation of the market size. This estimate works from the size of the U.S. service economy down to how much a subset of businesses would spend on planning and designing those services:

top-down U.S. market size of service design

As is the case with all market sizings, this top-down is larger than the following bottom-up market sizing. But the difference is quite large.

Second, the bottom-up market sizing. This estimate works from the number of service design firms and internal teams to a total annual investment in service design:

bottom-up U.S. market size of service design

The question I have is why such a huge discrepancy between the top-down and bottom-up estimates? There’s a 614% increase from the bottom-up estimate to the top-down estimate.

My hypothesis is that farm more “agencies” and internal teams are doing the work of service design, but they call themselves different things or approach the work with different toolsets, approaches, and mindset. There are many ways to plan and design a service.