Sharpening the Project Focus

I recently had a discussion with one of the designers here at NCR that works across many mediums. The discussion started with a brief explanation of where my project was going but it eventually twisted into a project reforming exercise.  He explained that the project I was currently managing was very large, a point I had made myself, and explained that having such a large field to work with is not only difficult, but also not realistically manageable with the short timeframe. Acknowledging this he then recommended some directions that would be more fitting, without stating that anyone direction was the correct one to pursue. This level of feedback and commentary was very welcome as it presented a large degree of insight without controlling the project direction. Through the questions he asked, I was able to see the areas of my project that had holes or needed further detail. I found the questions that were asked very helpful to speculatively test the projects appropriateness. I took note of the questions for future referral and plan to ask myself them at every stage of project development.

It was also recommended that I look into other companies or industries to see how they have tackled the problems that I am looking into. Taking particular interest in the internal communication systems of larger companies I feel that this exercise could prove very valuable to my understanding of how communication systems work. I am interested in finding out how social media is used as a communication tool with larger companies and if it is widely considered to be effective.

The main questions that came out of the discussion are:

  • What information can each of the stakeholders provide and is it necessarily valuable to the platform as whole?
  • Whose perspective is the most valuable and is that perspective shared?
  • What benefits will this platform have for its uses and will they function as a big enough an incentive for its continued use?
  • If the platform is going to be have a lot of traffic daily how will the large amount of data collected be managed and maintained?
  • How is the content provided by contributors received/displayed, distributed to the relevant departments and controlled by those that receive it?
  • If the platform is to be presented as for internal use only, how do you facilitate the influx of consumer insights?

The above questions really ask how the platform will function in the face of known pressures, as well as to highlight key design decisions that must be addressed. I now intend to really have a think about what direction I intend to take the project. I still intend to send out several copies of my “Insights Toolkit” in order to learn more about the key stakeholders, however I believe that given the new insights I have gained I will be able to focus on the few rather than the many.



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