The story behind how we created Priorities
2 days, 9 people, 1 idea, 1 solution (kinda).
We’ve just finished 2 days of hacking at Streamtime HQ. The result was “Priorities.”
Here’s the story of how we got there, the process we followed and what we learned over 48 hours.
8.30am – Bacon & Egg Rolls (very important start to a hackathon).
8.35am – Wayne joined us (we only met Wayne the day before at a General Assembly grad event and invited him to help us with UX and design – talk about baptism of fire)
9.00am – Team briefing. We setup expectations for the hackathon, roles, and prepared for a customer interview.
9.30am – Customer interview. We jumped on a call with Studio Badu. Edem (Founder) talked us through how she manages jobs, projects and partners. She shared how she uses Trello to monitor jobs through her studio, moving them through multiple phases to keep track of progress. Edem used Streamtime to plan jobs, quote and invoice.
10.30am – Customer and Competitor research. We carved out a segment of customers that we thought would be most interesting to research that met a size criteria and had mentioned the need for a board style solution in our past conversations with them. We also took a rapid look at other board solutions of all shapes and sizes.
11.30am – Insights sharing. We came together as a group, shared our findings and came up with a summary of findings that were to shape how we were going to approach our solution.
1.00pm – User story selection. After evolving user stories throughout the morning we came together to define exactly what we were trying to solve.
1.30pm – We split up to scope exactly what we were going to design and build, and how we were going to position and communicate it to customers.
PAUSE – here we made our first major mistake. Without visualising the solution, both teams (customer success and product) went away and created their versions of a solution from the user stories. Both came up with great ideas – unsurprisingly, they weren’t aligned. Customer success had bigger expectations to get customers excited about what we could offer. Product had much lower expectations, because, to be fair they had to have it built by 5pm the next day. Sound familiar?
3.00pm – We started having significant discussions around if what we were building was going to be good enough. This evaluation was from 2 equally valid sides. Was it going to be good enough (and had it been thought through well enough) that it was going to be an integral part of the product for the future, or was it going to be something that we could tell a compelling story around?
Depending on who you talk to, this was a stressful or productive discussion. Stressful in that we were nearly 50% through the hackathon and trying to make changes to something that half the team believed had already been scoped. Productive in that the team was working together to unearth perspectives from both sides that hadn’t been fully considered by the other.
5.00pm – We downed tools. Development had begun and we had the beginnings of a working prototype. It was also a good time to stop and allow for some space to evaluate where we had got to and if we were all agreed on what we were trying to achieve.
9.00am – Taking stock. We kicked off with a great discussion on where we had got to and to check on the understanding of what we wanted to have complete by the end of the day. Some ideas had been shared the day before that needed decisions to be made. Mockups hotly debated.
11.00am – Decisions made. Ok, this took a little longer than planned. At one stage, we had completely flipped on our plan, only to come back and decide that what we had would be the best solution that we could deliver, and to get meaningful feedback on once it came out of the hackathon.
11.30am – Tasks and roles clearly divided. Mainly into design, build, marketing assets.
1.00pm – Pizza. Gone within 10 minutes, and back to work.
1.15pm – A working prototype is uploaded to our demo server for us to begin testing with.
3.15pm – Invite for beta users written. Messaging created. Onboarding copy and emails written. Essential gif created. 2 blog posts written. Improvements to the prototype uploaded to demo. We can now create additional columns, flip cards for actions. We’ve also designed a background to make it clear this is a beta feature – IT COULD GO WRONG AT ANY MOMENT!
4.45pm – Priorities demo. It’s a wrap. We huddle round a computer, create lists, add jobs, add a ToDo from a job and share high 5’s.