Value Proposition Session
1. Session preparation
My process to organize a work session is straight-forward yet considerate. It's a bit like how my aunt chooses how to go about a recipe, reads several and then chooses the details she enjoys the most. I'll do the same, I read about the subject, go through canvases and I pick what I think might be most useful for the session. Always attempting to try new things everytime.
Making sure the objectives are clear is essential, I organize every exercise by the purpose of outcome and look to share the purpose with the group every time before and during the session. I also prepare to be flexible to some extent, since as a moderator you might want to speed up or spend more on time accordingly, it is important to adapt depending on group reactions.
The more you know the team, the better. You'll be able to choose adequate exercises that are suited to rhythms, personalities and available time. Also, time and attention-span can be sensitive, for example, a brainstorming is open-minded exercise it involves divergent thinking and therefore requires a completely different mindset than, say deciding on a concise sentence to work as an 'elevator pitch', which is something much more specific to achieve in a work session and it involves convergent thinking.
2. Let's start! The session
The objective of this session is that the team stops their daily tasks in order to reflect about their your own service/product with fresh eyes and understand how your customer views your service/product. Understanding your customer needs can lead to clearer communication, a better service and ultimately more sales and retention. In a Value Proposition session, everyone on a team should be involved, however it's important to note that this format also works better in a small group.
A warm-up exercise
We first did a warm-up exercise about the values of our team - an optional exercise. Each of us selected 10 of 100 words to talk to reflect the company, we've each presented our words and reflection. After this, we've had a chance to add an another word to the board of what we want to become as a company.
Value Proposition Canvas
We've then gone through the Value Proposition canvas together (you can read more about it here and watch this video of Strategyzer) to better understand the objectives and importance of deconstructing the needs of a customer. This is an empathy exercise so we can put ourselves on the shoes of our clients and only on a second part we'll be relating those insights with our service/product. If done in this particular order, this exercise helps match the purpose of the product with real customer's lives.
On assumptions (for the client side)
You can kick-start these sessions using the team's assumptions however it's important to later fact-check those assumptions. You can gather those with user interviews and research. Having real insights directly from you customer will allow you to validate this exercise or will make you realise some parts should be revisited.
3. Nailing a final sentence
On a second session, I gave everyone sometime to reflect between meetings. Then I've asked the team to bring a minimum of three sentences. I've printed out all the suggested sentences and we've all underlined what we felt worked best about parts of the sentences and built one as a group. We made an effort to kept it as simple. We there's too many ingredients on the final sentence we should revisit it.
This exercise became great material for the company's pitch, website re-design material and to clarify our vision!