Published on February 14, 2014
Experience Studio Design Journal Future of Mobility Nick Lawrence|Fall 2013 Nick Lawrence
What is the future of mobility?
Quadrant (2x2) Exercise This is a rendering of the first version of our topic exploration using a collaborative tool. Members of the team populated the screen with ideas around our interpretation of the topic of mobility and together we migrated each post-it into areas that aligned with the axis we set ranging from independent to collective, physical to mental, and passive to active. From this exercise we utilized our pattern recognition skills to extract all of the commonalities we observed to help us move towards the next phase of topic selection by narrowing the focus.
solution space exploration Quadrant (2x2) Exercise tangible active The second version is the graph our team used to form the direction and path we elected to explore. From this exercise we arrived at a point where we wanted to understand what motivates people and elicits a strong emotional response around gathering and getting together for significant life or milestone events. mobility infrastructure sharing/sharing economy What gets people excited about getting together? wayfinding sound events cross-cultural interactions crossing neighborhood borders recreation collective pa ss ive independent intangible
Qualitative Research //1 on 1 Interview Transcript ExpStudioFuture of Mobility Research David Susan Ben
Primary Research Findings Communal events around food and music are critical to life experience. Our psychological culture and formative character are shaped and influenced by our parents, extended family, and those who are close to us. Our set of values come from family related interactions that we choose to covet. Values are the sum of principles, norms, and standards of behavior that are passed on through sensorially rich traditions and experiences. The nucleus of values transmission is the family dinner table, however, the concept of the family dinner is evaporating from our culture. How do we prevent the disappearance of cultural identity and sense of belonging to a community?
Secondary Research // Psychology of Social Behavior Collective Effervescence Emile Durkheim’s theory of collective effervescence played a significant role in the development of our desired experience. The theory of collective effervescence is a perceived energy formed by a gathering of people. Durkheim established this theory around the turn of the 20th century when observing a sacred ritual of Australian Aborigines known as a corrobbori, a ceremony which marks the rejoining of Aborigine groups after periods of nomadic separation. Strong emotional reactions, energy, and sense of electricity were evoked as a response of the group coming together. There were palpable feelings of exaltation and pure euphoria, with a compounding intensity as the ceremony progressed. Durkheim observed it as a transformative experience for the tribe members. He firmly believed from his observations that it is rituals analogous to these where we obtain our reverence for society, a respect that can not be attained in isolation or autonomously.
Secondary Research // Shared Social Experiences Evolutionary Origins of Music There is a strong connection between emotion and music that goes much deeper than what we see on the surface. In a concert or club setting, people are experiencing emotions that are contagious in that we respond to a prevalent mood which influences one’s own interpretation of the music. Much of the value of listening to music is derived from being in a communal and shared environment. Mealtime Socialization We discovered that food preparation, distribution, and consumption authenticate our social and moral beliefs and values and also promote a sense of continuity across generations. In many cultures, food is highly symbolic and people tend to imbue particular varieties of food with sentimental, moral, religious and health-related meanings. Adults and children alike tend to associate food with a communal identity and can be attributed to affirming or diminishing affection and social bonds. What’s more, family mealtimes tend to be used to recount narratives that convey moral messages and become the central facet of the experience.
Identifying The Opportunities Shared Experiences around food Shared Experiences around music Potential areas to be explored • How do you bring families back to the table in a compelling and innovative way? • Can we re-define what the dining table is? Transmission of values • How do you reduce the feeling of guilt around someone not being able to attend an event and still facilitate that connection under the condition a person is absent? • How do we leverage future technology, environments or spaces to deliver a collective family experience?
Concept Development // Phase 1 Restaurant Concept We then modeled the experience in alignment with our primary and secondary research findings. As a group we felt we had identified parts of the user experience in the context of a family dining event that we needed to focus on and enhance. We moved forward with the design of a creative concept for a restaurant. To complement our intended solution, we also drafted a storyline for context and to highlight the experience triggers. The restaurant idea was designed to elicit the core meanings of community, beauty and creation through the delivery of an authentic family dining experience that would be engineered based upon a family’s unique shared memories and compelling history. It was meant to be a customizable, immersive and emotionally charged event that allows patrons to explore the transformative powers and origins of a cornucopia of tastes, smells, sounds, colors and textures that can be crafted and inspired by cuisines from around the world in a familial and historical context. This was designed to be a dynamic way for families to rewrite the past, live in the present, and preserve the richness of the future. We created an elaborate storyline in association with our research to underscore the triggers and core meanings.
Evolution Restaurant Storyline Alex, 42, Dave, 40 and Jen Crane, 36, are siblings who were raised and currently live in Seattle, WA. All three of them are married with children. Jen has just recently moved back to the city after 5 years of living in Frankfurt, Germany as a consultant. Jen’s return to Seattle with her family is a cause for celebration. Growing up, Jen had a very close relationship with her siblings, parents, and relatives. Family dinners, road trips, camping excursions, and traveling to exotic destinations occurred with great frequency, however, as Jen and her siblings have aged it has been difficult to get the Crane family collectively together because of hectic schedules and being abroad. The Crane family has been yearning with great expectancy for the time when Jen and her family returns to Seattle. Alex, Jen’s older brother wants her homecoming to be a memorable experience for the entire family. Alex is feeling a strong sense of nostalgia about past family gatherings. Family dinners for the Crane’s have been formative experiences for the children, rich in storytelling and have been catalysts in the strengthening of emotional bonds between them. In his search for a venue, Alex mentions that he came across a compelling review in a food blog about the new “Evolution” Restaurant. The review discusses an experimental restaurant concept that evokes an unparalleled authenticity and wanderlust. The concept is delivered in an intimate setting that is designed around immersing people in a sensorially rich and emotionally charged experience that allows the patrons to explore the transformative powers and origins of a cornucopia of tastes, smells, sounds, colors, and textures that can be crafted and engineered from a wide variety of cuisines from around the world. Dave tells his parents about this intriguing new restaurant concept, and also thinks that this would be a great opportunity to celebrate and reunite as a family. Mom and dad are super excited. When Dave makes the reservation online, some customizable options and “ingredients” are displayed to make this experience a multifaceted tour de force for the family. The options range from reservation date to some other unique and interesting options: 1.)When was the oldest person in the party born? 2.)The most memorable decade for the family, the decade most interested in, or the most intriguing decade to the family. 3.)The most exotic place the family has traveled to or wishes to travel to. 4.)What kind of cuisine they most enjoy as a family. 5.)What music would they like to listen to during their meal or can be suggested/picked by Evolution Restaurant. After finishing this questionnaire the “Saigon Experience” is suggested for the family. A brief description of the dining experience is presented about what Alex’s family will experience. “1930 Vietnamese Cuisine” a fusion of French and exotic Asian cuisine…” Dave gets excited because Vietnamese culture has always been an integral part of his family and family history and is excited to be able to share this new restaurant concept with them. Their grandfather Don, was born during the 30’s in Vietnam when his family served in The State Department in the American embassy. A long and vibrant history between Vietnamese culture and the family has existed but this is an opportunity to relive it and be transported to that time in history. They all arrive at the address at 730pm. The restaurant has the facade of an old french colonial style house but located in a back alley off of a main thoroughfare. From the entrance you could only see a small sign saying “Evolution”. They enter. A hostess takes them to their dining room by walking through a narrow breezeway that is cavernous and crypt-like with a fragrant smell of orchids. The wood floor boards creek beneath them. The space is very intimate. They are ushered into a gorgeously appointed and decorated room with a big table and a modern and transitional motif. Accents of Asian furniture and a low muted yellow lighting resembling a light emitted by a gaslamp or edison bulb create a comfortable and reminiscent ambiance. The dining table wraps around the chef’s workstation forming an amphitheater for the family designed to make the family feel as if they are the audience of this spectacle but also are the protagonists of the narrative. The family feels a growing and compounding sense of intensity and anticipation around what will happen next. They all feel a moment of awe and collective sense of warmth from the environment and from being in the presence of each other. After they are served water, the Executive Chef comes out and explains the menu to the family for the evening. After a short introduction all the family members immediately start talking about grandpa Don and his exotic stories from when he lived in Vietnam (the distinctive sound of a Vietnamese moon lute begins to play). While the stories are being recounted by the family, pungent aromas of spices and a blend of metallic sounds of the ladle sweeping against the wok with the crackling sizzle of food marinating in the iron skillet and the amber glow of the pilot light dancing across the chef’s face provides the atmosphere of a bonfire. This scene was indicative of the fact the family was writing the past, living the present, and preserving the future all in this one food experience. During the second course the chef brought out a big working table. Everyone stared at each other with perplexed expressions on their faces. The chef was going to give them a 15-minute lesson on how to make to make the Vietnamese dish Pho, grandpa’s favorite dish. The chef provides a rich detailed history of how the dish has evolved under the influence of French colonialism. Everyone was astonished at this decisive magic moment. Finding out the unique history of this dish gave it more meaning to them and the history it had in their family mealtimes. After several other courses, the family had experienced a meal like no other. They had relived wonderful past family memories, understood the cultural context about the food they experienced, and had the opportunity to reconnect with their family history. At the end of the evening the chef brings out 5 small booklets with the story of the food, the history of Vietnam from the 30’s on, food history in Vietnam, and the colonial practices of the French.
Concept Development // Phase 1 Restaurant Concept Journey Map
Concept Development // Phase 1 Restaurant Concept Meaning Strategy & Triggers Community + Creation: unity and sense of belonging + the art of being able to create for a lasting contribution Beauty + Creation: comfort and familiarity Triggers: • Via digital touchpoint_ Customer questionnaire for the reservation: A cognitive trigger that would elicit shared and collective family memories. Collective memories can be used as a source of inspiration to define how and in what the sequence the future touch points are designed for each customer. ◦ Family dinners ◦ Road trips ◦ Camping excursions ◦ Traveling to exotic destinations • Table design: Amphitheater form and location creates a sense of anticipation and intensity around a spectacle or imminent event. It brings people together yet in an unorthodox and unconventional manner to inspire people to rethink the traditional family dinner setting. The intention of the design is so that everyone has a line of sight to be able to make eye contact, engage, and interact with each other including interaction with the chef. • Menu explanation: A cognitive trigger to spark conversations and storytelling. • Chef sharing a lesson on a working table: The table symbolizes the introduction of a new element to the experience. The chef and the lesson speak to the collective memory by deepening the knowledge of a family interest. Triggers: • Food Blog: Digital touch point that uses imagery and text to capture the holistic experience in a moment in time to entice and provoke the potential patron. • Customizable triggers: using taste and smell (through food), sound (music and cooking), colors and textures (through the dining room layout, decorative objects,interior decor, and lighting design). *The intensity of the triggers could also change according to the story (input) the customer provides in the reservation questionnaire. • Web page: simple clean aesthetic of the webpage layout so that the customer is not influenced by an specific aesthetic or visual identity. Austere identity is to signify that will be working with a clean slate or blank canvas. • Architectural style: it communicates family ambiance, intimacy, and period of history. • Smell of orchids: A sweet smell that resembles an exotic destination. • Creaking of wood floor: Evocative of being in the warmth of a home. • Chef cooking: smell, sound and gestures create an atmosphere to provoke a hypnotic, mesmerizing and amplified experience. • Booklets: as a way to delight (enlighten) the customer with things that are of their interest. An artifact as a tangible record, reminder, and time capsule of the family experience. • Music: Customers select the music to compliment the dining experience.
Concept Development // Phase 2 The Emotional Experience of Guilt FORGING NEW PATHS : We realized that our previous potential solution was especially feature-heavy, amenity-rich and over-complicated, diluting our intentions and overall it wasn’t necessarily solving the right problem. Subsequently, we went back to our research findings and revisited some of the key stakeholder pain points in the shared experiences journey. We arrived at the consensus that we were neglecting a substantial data point that came up in many of our interviews. It was the feeling of guilt when people missed out on events that deserved more of our attention and presented a more substantial opportunity to deliver positive impact. How is guilt defined & How is it applicable ? Guilt is an emotional experience that occurs when a person realizes that they have compromised their own standards of conduct and bear a significant sense of culpability for the offense.. When we see others suffer because of something that has been done, it causes us pain and this constitutes our powerful system of empathy which kicks on like an internal thermostat. It is in our altruistic nature and adaptive need to maintain connections to those we are close to and rectify a certain situation in order to course-correct. Since guilt has this inherent adaptive quality to it, we immediately are driven to fix our relationships and restore equity to them however what we have realized is that we do not have all of the necessary tools readily accessible to satisfy our needs for instant gratification or in this case instant reparation. Modern relationships now have a more dynamic dimension to them because of technological developments and tools. Empathetic gestures and coping mechanisms and their perceived effectiveness is directly tied to easily discernible human emotions in order to gauge authenticity and validity. In other words, in the scenario of offering an apology to someone, a text message or email should not suffice and should not be used in lieu of or even replace the opportunity for human connectedness. An emotive interpersonal exchange constitutes seeing someone’s facial expressions and hearing the tenor of someone’s voice. Anatomy of Effective Apology & Empathy 1. Statement of regret for what happened 2. Clear ‘i’m sorry’ statement 3. Request for forgiveness 4. Offers of compensation 5. Expression of empathy 6. Acknowledgement that certain rules or social norms were violated
Rapid Prototyping Our initial solution was to be integrated with a central calendar such as google calendar where one would be able to view all of person’s events populated in one central place. The interface would allow the user to see the events they are attending or have declined. The user would then have access to capsule messages to send to the invitee if the invitation was declined. The option would be for the person to record a video message, send a text, send an ecard, or send a personalized written note which could all be deployed and sent to the recipient with a timed-release technology. There would also be a prompt for custom gift suggestions which would lead the user to ecommerce sites. There is also a feature for the user to be able to track their process in a gamified way where they can view if they have followed-through with responding to invitations they have declined.
Positioning Statement Exercise & Brand Strategy BENEFIT WIth many elements and variables compe5ng for people’s a9en5on in life, Toast leverages the ease and convenience of mobile technology to provide emo5ve and personalized communica5on tools COMPETITIVE FRAME With the proliferation of online event management and invitation platforms, people are using these technologies to rsvp or decline invites, however there are no existing outlets that provide the opportunity for sincere empathetic responses should someone be unable to attend an event. Designed to ease the emotional experience of guilt Toast equips socially active people with the convenience of expressive communication tools to sustain meaningful personal connections with the people they care about when unable to attend important events. REASON TO BELIEVE Being absent from an event has the probability of being a conten5ous issue between people, especially if there is li9le clarity if a person has been earnest in their decline of an invite. Toast provides people with the ability to preserve a sense of community and meaningful connec5ons through redeeming gestures and seamless execu5on. TARGET MARKET Designed for socially ac5ve individuals who are juggling many events and are looking to retain and amplify the signiﬁcance of their personal connec5ons should they be absent from an important life event.
Positioning Statement Designed to ease the emotional experience of guilt Toast equips socially active people with the convenience of expressive communication tools to sustain meaningful personal connections with the people they care about when unable to attend important events.
SOCIALLY ACTIVE Competition Audit Through our solution we want to help equip people with the tools to get into quadrant one. 1 3 Need Guidance & Tools to Leverage People use platforms such as the below to generate invitations and correspondence for events and may posses the capabilities to deploy technology such as Toast. So these companies can be considered competitors or potential strategic future partners. Altruistic & Community-Centric EMPATHYDRIVEN APATHETIC 2 4 Introverts PASSIVE Need Therapy Competitors
Toast Prototype The newest version of the prototype incorporates our research on the anatomy of an effective apology to guide the user through crafting an empathetic response.
Customer Journey Map
Customer Journey Map
Customer Journey Map
Customer Journey Map
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