Hello,

Thank you for your interest in my workshop at UX London.

I’m looking for help from five people who can take 15 minutes to share a story with a small group of other workshop participants. If you think that might be you, read the description below, and use the form on this page to sign up as a storyteller. If you have questions, feel free to email me directly.

Why? To participate in a “collective story harvest”

One method we’ll cover in the workshop is called Collective Story Harvest. It’s a method through which a whole group of people can “harvest” insights from a number of stories that are told all at the same time. It’s a great technique, widely used in some corners of society but rarely used in design. I’m excited to give people a chance to experience it! And that’s where you come in.

The story I’m looking for

I’m looking for at least five people to tell a 15-minute story. Here’s the request:

Tell us about a time when customer research (or some other exposure to people outside the organization) significantly affected the organizational conversation — shifted beliefs, assumptions, or worldview, led to a change in direction or priorities, greatly impacted people’s sense of purpose,… etc. 

It could be a story about research, or something less formal. It could be early or late in the project. Whatever the circumstances, the key aspects of the story are listening to people outside the team and significant impact. 

This should be easy: please prepare, but not too much

This can be low key, more like a story told at the dinner table than a presentation.

Think back to the great stories you’ve heard. They have a beginning, middle and an end, and at their core is an element of overcoming or grappling with a challenge. The key criteria is that the story must have a breakthrough point or learning within it, although it does not need to be a total success story. I’m looking for reality, not Cinderella. This also means that the events in your story doesn’t have to be totally completed. Perhaps it’s a story still in progress.

What’s most important is that we can learn from your story.

To prepare, I’m hoping you’ll set some time aside to do a little writing. This is your real story you are telling, not one with made-up characters (though you are welcome to change the names).

Think of your story and make some notes along these lines to outline the backbone of your story:

  • Here’s who I am…
  • Here is the challenge that we faced and the challenge that I personally faced…
  • Here’s who is/was involved…
  • This happened… then because of that what happened… and because of that this happened…
  • Here’s where we are now…

You are welcome to bring your notes to support you as you tell your story, but please don’t read your notes. This isn’t a formal or rehearsed presentation. No slides, no fancy diagrams, just shop talk. You are sitting around the campfire with your peers telling them your story. This preparation work simply helps you craft your thoughts into a story that you can tell confidently, and that we can learn from.


Apply to be a storyteller

Thank you!

Marc Rettig