John Ellison

Day 57: Working on Training Concepts & Talking Next Steps

3 min read

In between the Purpose Workshop and Brand Refresh Playback on Day 57, I had some time to work on the concepts for the training project. I know it seems like I have been working on these concepts for a while now and I should have it nailed down, but the concepts have had such an intense evolution since their inception as a synthesis of the Training Stories Workshop on Day 44.

From the initial idea to the idea in its current state, the concept has transformed and taken many different shapes. It has been an intense game of ping pong between converging and diverging. Every time it is pitched to someone new problems arise, every time we look back at our user journeys and our personas for guidance and calibration something new comes into quesiton.

I think this project has suffered from a lack of a consistent working team. If we would have dedicated a much shorter amount of time to the project and had three people working on it from beginning to end I think we could have been much more efficient.

But nonetheless I understand that in an agency setting with multiple initiatives and projects going on at one time, resources need to be allocated according to priority.

Working on Concepts

As I sat down to work on the concepts before our 2:30pm meeting to discuss next steps, I had two separate products that worked together to solve a variety of problems that we defined in our research and discovery phase. It felt like we had past the point of invention and we were working towards a clearer, distilled and articulated concept.

Knowing that I had to pitch the concept to James, Andy P and Clare in less than an hour, I sat down and did my best to incorporate the feedback that I'd gotten from Mikey and Andy T since I'd last worked on the propositions. I sat down and completed the following

  • Sticky note value proposition exercise
  • Choosing the most articulate combination of components
  • Pitching the concept out loud and iterating
  • Creating three cards that each broke down one nuance of the idea into a simple phrase and illustration

working on concepts 1

chorus card 1

chorus card 3

chorus card 3 option 2

quire card 1

Talking Next Steps

As I mentioned earlier, James, Clare, Andy P and I sat down to talk about the status of the project. We each defined what we felt the purpose of the session was. We concluded by the end we had three main questions we wanted to cover in the course of the session:

  • Where are we?
  • Do we have shared understanding?
  • What are the next steps?

chat 1

chat 2


By the end of the session we had at least touched on each of the questions and we knew that we wanted to set up a meeting between James, Andy P and I the next day to talk about how we would present the concepts in a unified format next week to the project stakeholders. Clare kindly booked a 1.5 hour slot in the calendar and invited Andy B, Rich and Jeremy. We finally had a deadline to pitch our ideas to Clearleft's cofounders and had a set amount of time to work on the pitch.

sticky takeaway 1

sticky takeaway 2

sticky takeaway 3

sticky takeaway 4