IDEO Shopping Cart Challenge: Focussed Chaos

This movie is about IDEO, the exciting Design and Innovation Comapany from Silicon Valley, in which they were challenged to create a new Shopping Cart in one week. The nice thing about IDEO is that they focus on the process in stead of certain products or services. From a new space shuttle to processes in health care. They call it focussed chaos. 

Question yourself while watching this video:

1) What do I notice about the environment (physical & culture)?
2) What are the stages in their process?
3) What does the leadership role look like? 

We had a discussion with Michael “The Failure Professor” Roberto from Bryant University about this video , and these are some of the findings:

1) Environment: IDEO has a playful culture (“it is crazy what we’re going to do!”), in which everybody can build his / her own workspace. An office on roles (nice metaphor!:)) And one of the key elements in this is that the prototypes that didn’t work are hung on the wall. They show in this way that failure is part of experimenting, as long as you are open about it and learn from it. You don’t especially learn from failure; you learn from comparing failure and success.

2) Process:
A) OBSERVE! No focusgroups, but live & work with your customer. A bit theory U like you could say.
B) Brainstorm. Well guided!
C) Prototype. Build in a cheap way more then one, so you can combine lessons learned.
Everybody know these stages, so even “focussed chaos”  has its game board.

3) Leadership. There are well known constraints, ground rules (on the wall) and it is a reputable process. The manager is not the leader of the process, but the one who is best in leading the process. It is more about the team then about the leader. It is not that the leader has the best ideas, what would probably emerge if their CEO would be at the white board.

An inspiring place to work I would say! Let’s play innovation!


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