Design thinking

Question of the week: what is the major difference between the first 2 photos.

Pardon? That the 1st one contains whisky while the 2nd one chocomelk?

Nope.

Any other guesses?

Then I come out with the solution: the biggest difference can be found in knowing the target market segment: while the product designer of the whisky glass could obviously see the world through the eyes of a drunken person, the designer of the Chocomelk apparently had never seen a child before. It would be difficult otherwise to find a reason of a cocoa cup which dramatically narrows towards the bottom, making the whole mug so easy to knock over for 0-7 year-old citizens, being the target audience of the product – while the whisky glass stands solid, impossible to be knocked over.

And you know what? After creating the cup, the designer wasn’t completely satisfied with this Masterpiece: as there still might be children who eventually manage to balance the cup. So he didn’t take a rest, and went further to design an accompanying soucer – you know, with the little circle shaped edge in the middle. So children with exceptional manual skills, who survived Level 1 (not knocking the cup over), can still fail the Advanced Level (placing the cup back on the soucer), so the Chocomelk can still land on the table/ in their lap.

Of course I totally follow the mental process of the designer thinking that the cup works very well with those children below 7 who have perfect fine-motoric skills AND are able to sit at restaurant tables motionless for hours – and I would really not want to disturb him with the special needs of the children belonging to the rest 99.9% of the target group.

I can hardly believe that there have been mamas/ papas/ grannies in the past 20 years who have not seen a child knocking over a Chocomelk in their direct surrounding – or, if their child was lucky enough, have not been sitting themselves by restaurant tables with a completely alert nerve system, being terrified WHEN the drink will be knocked over.

I wouldn’t be surprised if one day it turned out that the Chocomelk designer was financially supported by the alcohol lobby, so to make parents promote their children’s getting used to drinking whisky as soon as possible.

Right time – wrong place

Beginning of this week I had the opportunity to participate in my 1st Telepresence Meeting ever. A bit similar to the video conference facility, so the participants not only hear but also see each other, but in Telepresence you have several grandiose screens, making it possible to invite many parties at the same time, and everyone hears and sees everyone. Picture quality is marvellous, you see each others’ face in real life size – and as for the sound, well, if someone turns pages in her documents in Prague, from the mere sound I am able to tell in Brussels which page she is at.

5 countries are present on our meeting, in which I am demonstrating talents as the organizer – so it is important enough things go smooth.

Originally I invited a 6th county, too, but there the colleague had an urgent call so she excused herself. For this reason her meeting room is shown empty on the big screen.

The meeting has started. We are just discussing a key topic, when I (also all other participants) see a lady entering the room of the 6th county. I immediately realize she is not our invited colleague, so it crosses my mind the invited colleague must have quickly delegated this meeting to another local colleague, very nice of her, so far so good.

Then this lady goes to the meeting room table, and takes out something from her pocket… which is a cloth ….. ohnoo she is starting to dust the furniture!

In the other 5 participating countries there are more and more colleagues who are unsuccessfully trying to suppress their smilies, and I am just about to raise my voice and inform the lady that here we are having a meeting actually – when she steps to the door – and leaves the room.

So I conclude also smiling in myself that, thanks God, the reputation of our Utmost Serious Meeting has been retained, and that even the best script writer wouldn’t have been able to think of a funnier intermezzo….

when the door re-opens, the same lady enters, but this time not alone: she is dragging something heavy with herself….. oh noooo…. cannot be…. this…. is….. an….. INDUSTRIAL VACUUM CLEANER!!!!!

She is switching it on.

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Have I mentioned you already the perfect sound quality of Telepresence meetings….

where even the sound of papers…..?

I black out.

Curtains.

You just can’t have it all

…the feeling when you visit with the family the hyper automated cinema full of innovative ideas (e.g. self-purchase counters..) and you pay EUR 50 for the 4 of you.. and then you need queue up for the toilets where they ask you to pay an extra EUR 0.40 – in cash..

Customer experience.

Still a long way to go.

Excuse me

We are buying some sweaters to our daughter in NL.
The method recommended by her is the following: I take a photo of her in each piece and then on the basis of the pics she takes the decision.
I pop the question: what if she just takes a look directly in the mirror?
From her look I conclude it was the Ultimate Evidence of Misunderstandings cross Generations. 
I say a quiet ‘sorry’ and back out of the changing room with my eyes downcast.

Innovation

Me (enthusiastically): ‘Look at that innovative solution on the beer crate – a handle in the middle! I cannot recall it from earlier, there were handles only on the 2 sides..’

My husband (mutually enthusiastic): ‘Indeed! Isn’t technological revolution wonderful! How easier life has become for single alcoholists!’