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Tools and approaches

Same problems - different tools

We use a range of tools and approaches in our work with clients. This growing library contains some of them that we find particularly helpful and have used on multiple occasions. As ever, we build on the work of others, crediting them when we do so!


  • Big Reveal

    Sometimes, when you’re working on things together online, you want to be able to write things down in a shared space without everyone else being able to see what you’re doing. We’ve learned a trick from our friends at Outlandish to help with this, whether you’re doing a project retrospective, or trying to come up… Read More »Big Reveal

  • Defining the Cast

    Too often we do things to our users and people our organisations exist to serve. Instead, we should be doing things with them or on their behalf. One way of ensuring that this is the case is to try, as much as is possible to ‘step into the shoes’ of each kind of user or… Read More »Defining the Cast

  • Eisenhower Matrix

    Dwight D. Eisenhower was not only a five-star general in the US Army during WWII, but subsequently served two terms as 34th President of the United States. He was a man who knew time pressure! A quote attributed to Eisenhower is “I have two kinds of problems, the urgent and the important. The urgent are… Read More »Eisenhower Matrix

  • Fast 5’s

    We’re big fans of what some call Crazy Eights, an approach core to design sprints when developing new products and services. However, we’re not huge fans of the name (‘crazy’ isn’t very neurodiverse-friendly) and coming up with eight ideas is hard. So we’ve coined the term Fast 5’s to refer to this slight tweak on… Read More »Fast 5’s

  • Must, Should, Could

    Prioritisation is hard. Thankfully, there are lots of simple ways of thinking through how important something is to the next version of a product or service. One of these ways is the MoSCoW method. However, we always forget to capitalise the correct letters in that acronym, so we just call it Must / Should /… Read More »Must, Should, Could

  • NOISE Model

    The chances are that most people reading this had heard of SWOT analysis. You may have even done one yourself. While it is useful to identify the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats of a project or situation, sometimes a bit more nuance is needed. This is where the NOISE model comes in. Initially thought-up by… Read More »NOISE Model

  • Pre-mortem

    We all know what a post-mortem is, right? It’s something that you do after something or someone has died, and is an important learning process. But what about a pre-mortem? The point of a pre-mortem is to create a ‘safe space’ to take a look at project risks. All you do is imagine it’s six… Read More »Pre-mortem

  • Traffic light categorisation

    Getting feedback, whether through user interviews, surveys, or some other means is an integral part of developing good products. But how do you make sense of the jumble of comments, quotations, and insights? This Traffic light categorisation Jamboard template is a super-simple way of dividing the feedback you get into three areas: Green ⁠— what… Read More »Traffic light categorisation

  • Stakeholder mapping

    One of the hardest things to do on any project is to keep everyone happy. A useful way to map this at the start of the project was shown to us by Daniel Mosforth from Bay Digital. We’ve adapted his in-person approach for a digital setting. This activity allows a group to come together around… Read More »Stakeholder mapping

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