Posted in Product

Design Studio Workshop


This workshop is a team activity to design the UX for a product/ feature with any team members regardless of design expertise.


  • 5 – 8 people recommended 
  • Larger than 8 could be wise to run parallel sessions


  • Pens 
  • Pencils
  • Felt-tip markers or similar
  • Highlighters (multiple colours) 
  • Sketching templates (can be blank sheets of A3 divided into 6 segments) 
  • A1 self-stick easel pads
  • Dot stickers 


  1. Problem definition and constraints 
    • Ensure everyone is aware of the problem you are trying to solve
    • Everyone understands the assumptions 
    • Everyone knows the users you are serving
    • The hypotheses you’ve generated
    • Constraints in which you are working
  2. Individual idea generation (diverge) 
    • Give each person a sketching template
    • If people find prospect of a blank page daunting optionally add a step whereby everyone writes the name of a persona/ pain point in each one (can repeat) and spend 5 minutes doing this
    • Give everyone 5 minutes to generate 6 low-fidelity sketches of solutions
    • These should be visual articulations, not words
    • If you can draw a square, a circle, and a triangle you can draw any low-fidelity diagram
  3. Presentation and critique 
    • 3 minutes per person
    • Go around the table
    • Each person holds up their sketches and presents them to the team
    • Presenters should state who they were solving a problem for and which pain point they were addressing and then explain the sketch
    • Each member of the team should provide critique and feedback to the presenter
    • Feedback should be focused on clarifying the presenter’s intention – no opinions allowed as they get people defensive and provide little clarity
      • How does this address the persona’s problem?
      • I don’t understand that part. Can you elaborate?
  4. Iterate and refine in pairs (emerge) 
    • 10 minutes
    • Each pair has an A3 sheet
    • Pair up (it is a good idea to pair up with someone with similar ideas if there is someone)
    • Each pair will be working to refine their ideas
    • Goal is to pick ideas that have the most merit and develop a more evolved, more integrated version of those ideas
    • Get more specific here, more details
    • Once time is up do the Present and Critique section again
  5. Team idea generation (converge) 
    • 45 minutes 
    • The team must converge on one idea 
    • The goal for this idea is to be the best for success an to be the basis for forming an MVP and running experiments
    • Use the easel pads or a whiteboard for the idea
    • Sketch components and workflow
    • Will need to compromise and pare back features 
      • Any ideas that don’t make the cut this time go into a parking lot to make it easier to let go of ideas
    • Put the output of this in a visible central place 


  1. Lean UX by Jeff Gothelf, pg 52 – 57



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