Website Design

How not to Run a Design Sprint

Post by
Gurpreet Singh Dhindsa
Website Design

How not to Run a Design Sprint

Author:
Gurpreet Singh Dhindsa

Solving problems takes time, especially when it comes to big, critical questions related to business. You will need to identify the problem, complete an analysis, develop possible solutions, evaluate which solutions are most effective, and only then get to implement it. 

This all sounds simple, but it is much more difficult in practice. Of course, you won’t always succeed the first time—you will make mistakes and develop other solutions to try to take care of the issue. Business problems take teamwork and time if you want to handle them successfully. But, what if the problem is too difficult to deal with? 

Then, all you need is five days.

The Five-Day Process

When a problem is more significant and more serious, you will need to take the time to analyse them and come up with solutions. Contrary to what most may think, all you need is five days to solve critical business questions.

Addressing a big problem within five days—sounds quite impossible and almost hopeful, doesn’t it? At first, it seems unbelievable; how can you successfully deal with a problem in less than a week? Once you learn more about design sprints, they won’t seem so impossible or unthinkable anymore.

The design sprint is just like it sounds—designing solutions quickly. Instead of following the traditional process where individuals are assigned to their departments, design sprints form a carefully-selected team from across the organisation to collaborate. They are then expected to present a potential solution within five days through design, prototyping, and testing ideas.

Sprint Mistakes You Could Be Making

Design sprints are best used for solving big challenges and kicking off digital projects like custom website design. This is a great way to shortcut the endless debates and compress months of work into five days. 

Although this sounds like the golden opportunity to fast-forward into the finished product, don’t rush into it. Design sprints aren’t easy to run—they’re more than just downloading a sprint schedule and following exercises. If you want to run a design sprint successfully, watch out for these mistakes.

Not Preparing Before The Sprint

Once a sprint starts, there’s no time to waste—you need to collaborate as much as you can and make little to no mistakes at all. If you don’t prepare before the sprint, you could hold everyone back and negatively affect the entire process.

Sprints may sound simple on paper, but they can be much more complicated once it’s your turn to run it. Find all of the resources you can find and read each one so that you won’t be surprised or blindsided by anything during the five-day process. 

Choosing a Simple Problem

Design sprints were made to address critical business challenges, but if you pick a problem that isn’t that substantial enough, you could be wasting everyone’s time. Everyone aims to learn from the design sprint, and to learn, they need to push themselves to their limits. What use will the design sprint be if the problem takes almost no effort to solve?

Only Recruiting Designers

Just because design sprints have the word ‘design’ doesn’t mean they’re limited to just designers! To have a successful outcome, you will need key players with various experiences. Through the different outlooks and expertise of each team member, the team can come up with a wider range of solutions.

Ignoring the Sprint Map

With everything going on, it’s possible to forget about the sprint map. But when you get carried away with all of the complications and data, you can get lost in them. Sprint maps are a great way to keep the team on track. You can use this as a tool to visualise insights and questions; it allows you to pinpoint where you want to focus on.

Conclusion

Although a design sprint only takes five days, those five days will become one of the most challenging weeks you will ever have. If you want to make the most out of it and create solutions successfully, then watch out for the mistakes we listed above. You can also consider working with a design sprint agency in London to run the process for you if you don’t want to risk making any errors during the five-day process.

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