Now available for pre-order: Managing Priorities by Harry Max

Frequently Asked Questions

These common questions and their short answers are taken from Chris Risdon and Patrick Quattlebaum’s book Orchestrating Experiences: Collaborative Design for Complexity. You can find longer answers to each in your copy of the book, either printed or digital version.

  1. Do I have to do all these things in this book to orchestrate experiences successfully?
    We cover many frameworks and tools, but you will likely gravitate to approaches that meet your unique needs. For example, you may find ecosystem mapping (Chapter 3) and storyboarding (Chapters 8 and 9) help you get the job done, while touchpoint inventories (Chapter 2) or improvisation (Chapter 8) don’t resonate in your culture. The key: try out different approaches and build the toolkit that works for you.
  2. Isn’t this just a lot of deliverables?
    No! Working collaboratively with your colleagues is critical to orchestrating experiences. It takes effort and skill. What you do make—such as experience maps (Chapter 5), experience principles (Chapter 6), and opportunity maps (Chapter 7)—should be approached as tools to build empathy, inspire ideas, create alignment, and take action towards the same outcomes.
  3. You didn’t mention [insert tool here]. Does that mean I shouldn’t use it anymore?
    We are constantly adding, dropping, and modifying design methods in our own toolkits. Those presented in this book have proven to be predictably effective when designing for complex ecosystems with cross-functional teams. In some cases, these approaches may displace other things in your toolkit. We think you will find, however, that most will complement other methods and tools that you commonly use. We also hope the book inspires you to nd or invent additional approaches to orchestrate experiences better.
  4. Does this take a lot of time?
    More complex design problems in large organizations require more time as a rule. However, you will nd that the approaches we cover can be leveraged when you need to run fast and lean. For example, you can use portions of the example workshops (Chapters 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, and 8) to design small working sessions. Or you could use the ideation techniques (Chapter 8) within a small team.
  5. Isn’t this service design? (Or isn’t this just UX design or customer experience?)
    Yes! And no! We’ve intentionally approached this book as a synthesis of best practices, regardless of tribal affiliation. The service design, user experience, customer experience, and other communities have contributed to the growth of the orchestration mindset. And you’ll see us reference these practices and others (for example, see Chapters 1, 2, 7, and 10). At their heart, what they all have in common is human-centeredness. We will show you how to put it all together in action, regardless of whether you feel you’re doing user experience design, service design, interaction design, or [insert discipline here].

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