Deep dive design research and sensemaking?

2 November 2023

As part of my market engagement approach I use a more immersive form of what is called contextual enquiry in user-centred design. That’s part of putting of research back into marketing, and informed by design thinking and particularly deep dive design research methodology of innovation specialists IDEO. But I also use a version of the five-phase non-linear ‘sensemaking’ process used by the team at ReD Associates to help solve business problems:

ReD Associates 5 Phases of Sensemaking:

  • Phase 1: Frame the problem as a phenomenon
  • Phase 2: Collect the data
  • Phase 3: Look for patterns
  • Phase 4: Create the key insights
  • Phase 5: Build the business impact

For example, I have been looking at Smart Buildings as a ‘phenomena’ and also wicked problem, where this is no one answer or solution. Hence also looking at it as an ecosystem of stakeholders, where no one person has all the answers (see more here). The technology foundation that underpins the smart enablement of buildings can also be seen as an ecosystem of interdependent technologies, but that’s one for another post.

My point here is that of course building the business impact to explain the ROI smart buildings and what makes them so is an important consideration for consultants and vendors selling services and solutions (see more here). But from a market engagement perspective it also about seeking out insights and talking points that help provoke and stimulate the market, i.e. to start/inspire discussion and develop ’follow through’ via active engagement. The problem that is helping to solve is outlined here.

The deep dive diagram above is from post by ‘innovation addict’ Ercole Palmeri explaining the technique you can read here.

About Me

I’m an author and market engagement specialist who helps joins the dots between research, innovation, go-to-market activation and business transformation around 3 core activities: content, connections and conversations. Connect with me on LinkedIn or get in touch there.