SPRINT - Jake Knapp, John Zeratsky, Branden Kowitz

SPRINT - Jake Knapp, John Zeratsky, Branden Kowitz

Discover how to innovate and validate an idea by testing it in just five days! Use this powerful tool to your advantage and be able to visualize what your customers' reaction will be, in the future, to possible investments.

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Today's world is extremely dynamic, full of information and data. The technologies from industry 4.0 enable the most diverse and rapid changes in our personal and corporate lives. In this context, Jake Knapp, John Zeratsky and Branden Kowitz had developed an innovative methodology explained in the book "SPRINT".

In this way, it is clear the need for fast methods for applying new ideas and solving the most diverse problems that may arise.

In this summary you will learn each step of this technique, important advices from the authors. Everything aiming one objective: help you to improve your results!

Big companies such as Google use the design Sprint to be more assertive. Got interested to learn more? Stay with us!

About the book "SPRINT"

The book "Sprint: How to solve big problems and test new ideas in just five days" (2016), has 319 pages and is an original work developed by Jake K., John Z. and Branden K.

In a company like Google, for example, problem solutions can not wait long, they need to be fast and accurate. This method helps to identify, test, and troubleshoot quickly and efficiently.

About the authors Jake Knapp, John Zeratsky and Branden Kowitz

Jake Knapp is the creator of the Google Ventures Sprint process (GV), venture capital investment platform. He was also responsible for the development of Gmail and also led several projects using his methodology in several branches and startups.

John Zeratsky was a YouTube design leader. He also produced several applications, and worked with approximately 200 startups, including Uber. Nowadays, he writes for The Wall Street Journal, Wired, among other newspapers, on productivity and design.

Braden Kowitz was GV's design partner and led the design team for Gmail and Google Spreadsheets. He has already helped several startups to better serve the needs of customers and to build processes favorable to innovation. Today he is a product designer at Range.

To whom is this book indicated?

The book is suitable for people who seek to generate and test ideas, paths and quick solutions to problems and also develop projects in a different and agile way.

The method presented in this book can also assist venture capital investors, various types of companies and even anyone who has a good idea or concept but do not know where to start.

Main ideas of the book "SPRINT"

  • Problem solving in a fast and organized way;
  • Alternative to Brainstorm;
  • Division of tasks in five days of the week;
  • How to identify and test new ideas;

This summary will introduce you to the sprint methodology, presenting each of its stages!

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[Book Summary] SPRINT - Jake Knapp, John Zeratsky, Branden Kowitz

Overview: Introduction

While still working on Google, Jake Knapp realized that the concept of brainstorming was not as efficient and seldom generated a good idea enough to solve a problem optimally.

The authors state in the book that while the storm of ideas is amusing, it is not very organized and focused, so it sought to raise the difference between thinking in groups and thinking individually, and still a way to combine these two strands.

In this way, when joining with Zeratsky and Kowitz, these three genius had developed step by step the Sprint method.

But what is this method?

Sprint Methodology

Sprint is a focused and organized method. It was developed to be carried out in five intense days of work with a team of no more than seven participants, through the sharing and management of ideas in frames.

Every Sprint needs a "Definitor", who is usually the CEO or project manager. This person needs the authority to make decisions.

The purpose of Sprint is to be fast, and for this, those involved in this process need to abdicate their normal tasks within the company, turning their full attention to the application of the method.

Therefore, any form of distraction, such as electronic devices, is prohibited until the time of scheduled intervals.

Sprint requires dynamic interactions, so the members should make light and healthy meals to maintain energy and a high rate of productivity.

The members of Sprint

A productive Sprint has five types of professionals:

  1. Finance Specialist: The one who works with money;
  2. Marketing Specialist: The one who sells the products;
  3. Consumer Specialist: The one who talks directly with customers;
  4. Technical and Logistics Specialist: The one who knows what the company is capable of;
  5. Design Specialist: The one who works with product design.

It is also important that the person who deals with the problem in question and the one who had the initial idea, are part of the Sprint project. But be careful in your choices, remember that the next 5 days will require a lot of involvement and work!

Also, choose a Facilitator (other than the Definitor), someone who is objective about the process in which you are working. He must be someone impartial and patient who will be responsible for managing time, debate and the Sprint.

Overview: Monday - Begin at the end

The first day of Sprint. Here Jake Knapp, John Zeratsky and Branden Kowitz explain that is when you determine the purpose of the project and the goals that the business hopes to achieve in the long term.

The main goal of Monday is to create, in a clear way, complete diagrams with a lot of information interlaced, generated from the team's knowledge about the processes.

These schemas or maps, as they are also called, are very important for the Sprint to be executed correctly. Thus, during the chapter, the authors promote a complete explanation on the elaboration of these maps.

It is through them that the purpose of Sprint is defined: "to identify a significant solution to the problem".

Asking the relevant questions of the problem, such as "How could we...", called by the authors of "CP" or How Might We (HMW) method. It helps in this process.

It is important to make a list of all the people involved in the project, such as stakeholders, employees and clients.

Then, connect all the information by arrows, placing your objective in the right part of the picture, like an Ishikawa Diagram.

Once all the "causes" have been defined, ask the experts about the management and logistics of the processes, but do not take more than 30 minutes. The HMW method is ideal.

Finally, develop an action paradigm for the entire week! Make tough decisions and move on, do not waste time.

Overview: Tuesday - Fit and Perfect

On the first day the challenge is launched. In the second one, the solution is proposed!

For this, the concept of knowledge management is used, in which are analyzed and verified techniques that have already been used by other companies to solve problems similar to yours.

Organize these solutions in the framework, and then each Sprint member should work individually for the remainder of the day, creating and organizing each one of their own ideas to refine and adjust these solutions, respecting the following points:

  • It should be self-explanatory;
  • It should be anonymous;
  • It does not have to be neat;
  • Words are important;
  • Striking title to the point.

The authors detail this process in the book and point out the importance of working quietly for concentration, focus and meeting short deadlines.

By the end of Tuesday, everyone should present their best ideas divided into three different frames, as if it were a comic book (HQs), presenting the key points of their solution.

Overview: Wednesday: Decide

The morning of Wednesday is focused on organizing ideas generated the day before, seeking to raise a prototype.

Sprint members should then evaluate and compare each of the "HQs" created. Jake, John, and Branden specify in their book the step-by-step to make this comparison, with the following steps:

  • Art Museum: Hold the HQs on the wall, side by side;
  • Heat map: Analyze all of them, highlighting the most interesting and relevant parts;
  • Lightning Criticism: Discuss the key points observed in the previous step and write down the ideas that emerge;
  • Voting intent survey: Members vote for the best solution;
  • Super vote: The Definitor makes the final decision.

After deciding the best solutions, they should be organized and combined into one HQ or storyboard - as called by the authors - larger, containing ten to fifteen frames.

This information arrangement allows to raise the main defects of a prototype even before its elaboration, reducing the number of errors of production and execution, guaranteeing greater efficiency and less reworking.

Overview: Thursday - Build the Prototype

Thursday aims to "build" a prototype. That is, you need to build a facade of your prototype. Time is short, there's no way to build a real prototype in just one day.

So the authors suggest that you do something that is real enough to test. In addition, they portray that the less time spent developing prototypes, the fewer employees become attached to them.

This way, it is easier to change, improve or even discard these prototypes if they are not serving customers.

The prototype

The book "Sprint" explain that there is a specific step-by-step for prototyping, since each of them may be different with its unique characteristics. So, they define four actions that facilitate their creation:

  • Choose the right tools: To elaborate the prototype itself, seek to use the tools that have the highest speed and also ease of use and efficiency;
  • Divide to conquer: The Team Facilitator needs to split the Sprint group into Executor (2 or more), Tailor (1), Writer (1), Collector (1 or more), and Interviewer (1). Work division make the process to become more agile;
  • Tailor everything: The Tailor is responsible for gathering all the components raised from the divided tasks and then "sewing" them. That is, keep all information consistent and up-to-date;
  • Testing: Before presenting the prototype to customers, it is necessary to test it and present it to the Definitor, seeking to raise outstanding errors or gaps.

After this, the Interviewer creates a presentation script for the clients, which will be held the next day.

Overview: Friday - Interview & Learn

On Friday, the Sprint team will attend the prototype presentation meeting for customers, attentive to all feedback and reactions from them.

The book portrays that five interviews will tell you whether the prototype will work or not, but regardless of the outcome, you will learn a lot from the process and know exactly what the next step you will need to achieve your goal.

What do other authors say about it?

In the book "The Lean Startup", author Eric Ries says that the true productivity of a startup is measured by the systematic search for the right things to do. In The Lean Startup, every product, every feature and every advertising campaign is understood as an experiment to achieve validated learning.

For John C. Maxwell, author of "Leadership Gold", the best leaders are those who know how to listen. Listeners know what is happening because they are attentive. They learn better than others because they absorb from various places. In addition, good listeners have the ability to better see the strengths and weaknesses of other people.

Delving into the question of how to motivate teams and develop leadership, the book "Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action", is for those who long to inspire others and succeed at work. In this journey, Simon Sinek explains the importance of knowing your "why", that is, your purpose and your final mission.

Okay, but how can I apply this to my life?

If you need to find quick solutions or develop and test new ideas, be they at work or college, this methodology is ideal for you to get the best results in just one week!

In order to get great results with this methodology, it is crucial to:

  • Well define the team that will work in the project;
  • Respect the schedule that was defined previously;
  • Listen all the opinions, it enriches the development of ideas;
  • Always prioritize the consumer opinion and feedback, he is who will buy it!

Did you like this summary of the book "SPRINT"?

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