How do we address the emotional block that stirs up during the initial phase of the design process. Creatively, bottlenecks are almost always a result of being afraid to try something out. That is why the concept of try, test and iterate can really make a difference between stagnation and progress.
Believing in the power of prototyping is an emotional achievement as much as it is a viable design technique. It encourages us to do, say, and share something imperfect - with the underlying assumption that perfection is the enemy of insight.
Prototyping encourages me to do things as badly as I can at first - as long as I simply start. This allows me to take a measured, incremental approach to solving a problem. Rather than feeling overwhelmed over an imagined end-outcome - I can actually prove baby step viability, and get closer to a desired outcome by actually starting.
Especially at times where decisions have to be made in a group setting. A lot of early ideation can involve verbal brainstorming and conceptual understanding of the problem. Although understanding the problem, user pain-points and actual information is essential. Brainstorming, although fun and rewarding…can actually be an impediment to progress. When one person wants to explore a path, and someone else wants to explore another.
Things can get messy.
By moving into an energy of low-effort action, we don’t have t o resort to verbal sword fighting to prove which idea reins supreme. Different people have different ways of conveying their ideas. Eloquence not necessarily indicate a holier-than-thou idea, it simply indicates an ability to effectively express oneself. Although an excellent skill, it can drown out quieter voices that may have thoughts that often turn out to be project game-changers.
This where prototyping can level the playing field.
It acts as a means of expression.
It may not show us what we want directly.
Some of it will seem confusing.
Some of it will seem ridiculous.
But eventually, an ‘Aha’ moment will rise from the ashes of our burning assumptions.
Even if it doesn’t, at least we have solid proof of what does’t work. We can all nod in agreement, and then gracefully move on.