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Business Innovation Blog

Read about marketing, innovation, emerging technology and Design Thinking Methods. Includes lean startup, agile development and rapid prototyping tools.


Five ways you can be more agile through a methodology

 

Underlying all great entrepreneurs, artists and athletes is a method. Their method is a pattern of activities they do every day. It can be how they seek inspiration, how they think about problems or the steps they take in a workout.

An artist may search out morning solitude as part of the creative process. Entrepreneurs like Richard Branson carry a notebook to write down a business opportunity that he encounters in everyday life. We've all seen the famous pre-game dribbling drills from Stephen Curry. These are all deliberate parts of a process and methodology.

A methodology is a set of habits, procedures, rules and deliverables. We create and define methods so we can repeat the process and achieve better outcomes.

If methodologies are the playbook for Richard Branson and Stephen Curry, let's look at some of the best methods in business today.

Design Thinking

At the heart of Design Thinking is putting the user at the centre of design and development efforts. Moreover, we approach the user with empathy, and we continually search for the problems they face, and we look to solve them.

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Lean Startup

The most well-known form of 'Lean' method is the Lean Startup. Pioneered by Eric Ries, this approach is all about the search for a viable product. The Lean way advocates user-testing and validating your idea as early as possible. By embracing this process, the product comes from an iterative process.

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Agile Development

This Agile method is a favourite of software developers. It promotes a lightweight approach to developing software. In this collaborative and self-organising approach, teams can be autonomous and focus on the code.

There are numerous other approaches that I would put into the classic basket such as Waterfall, Sigma6, Open Innovation and Prince2.

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Create your methodology

The art of the perfect way understands how to reach an objective through a series of steps. Each step uses several factors such as time, roles, tools and other relevant dimensions. Importantly there's a logic that ties it all together - A before B then comes C.

Here are the five steps you can follow to build your method;

  1. Define each step 1-2-3

  2. Define the activities in each step

  3. Define the deliverables for each step

  4. Define the timeline per stage

  5. Define the logic and rules

Where it gets entertaining is working out what you can adapt in you in your method — for example, running some activities in parallel to reduce the timeline.

The best way to capture a method is a playbook built on timelines, checklists and any other prompt.

Here's the methodology we use at QUALITANCE. It's a hybrid approach to designing and developing with emerging technology.

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I encourage you to build your methodology. Make your work measurable and repeatable. When you do this, you'll be on track to make your work better.