Day#331: Presenting your Findings in a Playback format

Day#331: Presenting your Findings in a Playback format

Hey Researchers and Designers, how is everyone doing? Today I wanted to discuss playbacks and the importance of planning your playback in advance and making sure that they run smoothly. Recently someone asked me a question: how do you avoid getting nervous before running a playback. For those that are not aware a plyback is a presentation of research findings, you can run them with as little as 5 people or as many as 50. It all depends on the organisation and the team that you are working with, the people attending can range from designers to project managers to product owners and software engineers. These sessions are valuable for all involved on the project, and can help people feel closer to the user on a number of topics. Whether you run a straight usability test, or an ethnographic approach with site visits and lots of observational work playback sessions are always valuable. 

As mentioned above I was recently asked how to avoid the nervousness, for me it’s as long as i am prepared and as long as I factor in all the potential questions from the audience that stops me from being nervous. I remember once telling someone how I plan for all the types of interview questions that may come up, and the person looked at me as if I was crazy. It’s not actually that ridiculous normally I have a list of 10 – 20 questions, and never since doing this I have had a question that is unplanned. Yes you can have project related questions that you won’t have the answers for, but that is not for me to have the answers for anyway so it doesn’t often make me nervous of put me in a frenzy. 

I know the person I am about to share has a lot of controversy around him, I was watching this video by Valuetainment a channel I have been watching very frequently lately and really connected a lot with the way he thinks about things. The person I am referring to is Jordan Pieterson, Patrick Bet David and Jordan discuss how he thinks about things and plans, he has written a few books by now and it was also interesting to hear how he sets out the work to write his book. You can check out the video here, yes it is a long video but they talk about his methods for preparing presentation in the first 20 minutes or so, so if you have some time give the video a watch.

I really like how he also imagines different versions of himself carrying out the various ways something can go and then figures out which is the right way from the way each path ends. I know it sounds extreme to doers, the people who like jumping into something. But as someone who plans things on a deep and meaningful level, I really enjoyed hearing someone that had extremely similar thought patterns to me when productively trying to problem solve. Until next time, happy researching.

Bye for now


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