This week has been workshop planning and doing, and I’ve bloody loved it. Put me in front of a team and let me facilitate the session and I’m the happiest.
Also, to top off a great week, my wife also appeared inside many newspapers these (and it’s been a heck of a week for news), showcasing her fantastic business she has worked so hard to go, from scratch and on her own. Cue the proud feelings and look of awe. The article appeared in The Sun, the Daily Express and Leeds Live.

What did I enjoy:
We planned what we needed to deliver during alpha, and it was pretty intense, whilst it always feels an uphill challenge, I have been here so many times that it’s almost a script at this point. I tend to use the framework of the CDDO assessment as a guide and use that to keep the team keen, and the work honest.

I led a UCD-led workshop around the as-is user experience, including risks, opportunities, and pain points, which was a first for many team members!

Weirdly, I enjoy Mural, so getting back into mapping, strategising and facilitating is my thing. I feel a full grip on the project, I might not need to know everything (and I am ok with that), but I know what needs doing when it needs doing and what it’ll end up being, which ensures I stay a lot more focused and also ensures the team that they will see value from the UCD team.

What challenged me:
Doing workshops remotely is a challenge, it’s certainly doable, but it isn’t accessible to all - a huge challenge to ensure everyone is heard, can even attend or just feels comfortable.

Tiredness, this week has been heavy in regards to workload - not all weeks are the same, but this one is heavy on the UCD team (as alpha should be).

Finding time to do things outside of work, has owned me this week (not a huge issue), but my windowsill won’t paint its-self! I am working on a project that might need to use maps, but finding good findings on maps is proving to be a tricky task, whilst we know they are drenched in accessibility issues, there isn’t much written about what is done/being done, so if you do know - shout me!

What am I looking forward to next week?
Running through the first workshop face to face (in Birmingham) with the team and evaluating what we did, I am looking forward to doing the outputs and getting the future documents shaped (including doing a How Might We session with the pain points, risks etc gained from this week’s workshop).

Read of the week:
This is not the first time I’ve read this article, but as a team (led by the brilliant Tom) we ran a How might we session, and if you need guidance on how we did this - look no further than this brilliant post by Ben Holliday. Asking the right questions to frame the problem.

Watch of the week:
My film intake has halved whilst I’m in full-on work and dad mode (kids holidays last week!), but I am looking forward to working through my list of films, and maybe putting a web page live listing films and my short take reviews.

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