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VP of Organizational Design at Mad*Pow
Co-author of Discussing Design: Improving Communication & Collaboration Through Critique (2015, O’Reilly Publishing)
This workshop will examine how teams can improve the quality of design conversations and collaboration by focusing on the language, rules and strategies of critique.
Collaboration requires us to share our work; to communicate our ideas with one another and collect other’s thoughts in order to know whether the designs and creations we’re producing are meeting the objectives of the project. But often we wrestle with collecting feedback. We get comments that are less then helpful because they seem irrelevant or unclear. Or we find that we’re getting feedback and reactions at inopportune times rather than points in the process where they would have been useful in informing design decisions.
Our ability to critique speaks directly to the quality of the conversations we have with teammates, whether they be designers, developers, stakeholders, etc. Designers frequently complain about the quality and uselessness of the feedback they are given, but we rarely take a step back and examine how to collect useful feedback and make our discussions around our designs more productive. Participants in this workshop will explore critique and how it fits into the design process and both an activity and an aspect of any communication through presentation materials and a series of hands-on activities.
In this workshop participants will learn:
- What critique is and why asking for “feedback” is problematic.
- Why successful collaboration relies on the presence of critique.
- How to gather useful feedback from clients and teammates.
- How to introduce team members to the idea of critique and get everyone using it.
- How and where critique fits within the design and creative processes and it can be incorporated into projects?
Networking and light breakfast
Adam Connor, most recognizable by his magnificent beard, is a designer, author and illustrator based in Western Massachusetts. As VP of Organizational Design at Mad*Pow, Adam helps create positive change by addressing the relationships that people have with one another to foster more collaborative, creative and customer-centric organizations.
Adam and his team look closely at company culture and all of the ways that it gets expressed and reinforced. They explore how beliefs, behaviors and perceptions influence things like roles, structure, processes, and tools that organizations use every day. They then work collaboratively with teams to identify meaningful changes that teams can make to improve their capacity to work together creatively.
His work at Mad*Pow and extensive background in experience design, computer science, illustration, and film has taught him the value of delivering and receiving constructive feedback in the design process and the role it plays in effective collaboration. He has coached and trained teams across the world and from industry leading organizations such as Google, Disney, Fidelity, and Aetna.
In 2015 he and co-author Aaron Irizarry released Discussing Design: Improving Communication & Collaboration Through Critique with O’Reilly Publishing. His thoughts on collaboration and design can be found at adamconnor.com
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