On 12 October we held our fourth Innovation Event. These workshops are a chance to use service design thinking to get a new perspective on an issue or start to develop a new idea. We think about personas, policy intent and customer journeys as well as using our innovation cards to explore ideas.
Like all good things, the workshop is slightly different each time. We iterate to experiment and improve. This time around, we thought particularly about how we could make the process more collaborative.
Whilst everyone who attends brings their own ideas to work on, in the past we’ve found that the most exciting discussions come in the last half hour of the session, when everyone shares what they’ve been working on and builds on one another’s ideas. We wanted to make this a bigger part of the core session too.
We invited along some of the people who have previously been to an Innovation Event, gone on to pitch their idea to the Design and Innovation Board, and are now working it up through a design project. These people know what it takes to move from the first shadow of an idea to developing it. They could share with colleagues some of the questions and angles they used to explore their idea along the journey.
Throughout the session, the alumni moved around the workshop, chipping in with ideas and suggestions, or sharing something from their experience. It worked really well, particularly in showing people that the things they’re imagining today can become real life projects, supported by the Design and Innovation Board to make the change happen.
We’re planning to keep the conversation going beyond the workshop. Next week, we’ve invited all the participants who have attended an Innovation Event back together for an informal session to share how they’re progressing and where their ideas have got to. Hopefully this will help people to make connections to take things forward, or just remind people of their moment of inspiration and that there are enthusiastic people on hand to help them realise their goals.