Steve Portigal – You’ve Done All This Research… Now What?

Sean Carmichael

April 29th, 2011

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Conducting research and gathering data are crucial parts in the process of creating great design. But once you have all of the data, what do you do with it? How do you know you’re extracting the right conclusions and not leaving anything important on the table?

Steve Portigal of Portigal Consulting uses the methods of synthesis and ideation to approach this crucial next step. During his virtual seminar, Steve explains that synthesis is the process of turning field data into insights and then how you move to ideation to turn insights into solutions. So many questions came up during the seminar that Steve ran out of time to answer them all. He tackles the remaining questions in this podcast.

Here’s an excerpt from the podcast.

“…If you were ranking things against something that no one cares about you’re not really deriving value from that process. One thing that I think has been important for us is to align on the factors before we go into the ranking section, so that we know what we’re going to do.

When I say align, I mean that it’s us and the people that are going to be in that session. We’re doing idea generation with a large group, but we’re doing ranking with a very, very small group. My favorite would be a maximum of three to keep it kind of tight.

So I think we’re trying to understand and facilitate discovery with our stakeholders. And then understand their measurement of success. What are their business goals? And I think there are a handful of obvious ones around feasibility and cost and kind of investment and payoff.

I think those feel vaguely standard to me in terms of, how do businesses perform and how do businesses make products. I think more what I would like to get out of that facilitation is to kind of tease out the nuance. I think I gave the example in the webinar of a criteria that one team we worked with had and that criteria is about feasibility.

So, when I hear that, to me that means, can we build it? Is this Star Trek technology or is this something that we can actually build? And when we kind of tease it out, feasibility for them was actually about regulatory stuff. It was about legal feasibility…”

Steve addresses these additional points in the podcast:

  • How long does it typically take to get from the first interview in the field to the opportunities?
  • How much do you involve the client in the analysis process?
  • Should you deliver both good and bad statements so that it’s more palatable to your sensitive stakeholders?
  • Who is the top-line report really for?
  • Is it dangerous to present the top-line report to the stakeholders?
  • Can the opportunities translate into specific user requirements rather than solutions?
  • Should collaborative analysis happen with the end users?

Do you have experience analyzing user research data? Share your thoughts with us in our comments section.

Recorded: April, 2011
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2 Responses to “Steve Portigal – You’ve Done All This Research… Now What?

  1. All This ChittahChattah | ChittahChattah Quickies Says:

    [...] [from steve_portigal] Steve Portigal – You’ve Done All This Research… Now What? [... – [A 24-minute podcast for your listening pleasure and edification] Conducting research and gathering data are crucial parts in the process of creating great design. But once you have all of the data, what do you do with it? How do you know you’re extracting the right conclusions and not leaving anything important on the table? Steve Portigal of Portigal Consulting uses the methods of synthesis and ideation to approach this crucial next step. During his virtual seminar, Steve explains that synthesis is the process of turning field data into insights and then how you move to ideation to turn insights into solutions. So many questions came up during the seminar that Steve ran out of time to answer them all. He tackles the remaining questions in this podcast. [...]

  2. User Research 102 (Moderating, Note-taking, and Other Important Stuff) | DesignMap | User Experience for Products Says:

    [...] what you’ve learned. (The master, Steve Portigal, has some great material covering this as a podcast, virtual seminar, and [...]

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