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Five E’s and a pink flamingo Pt2 - Put yourself forward

This is a follow up article, if you have just come across this post head over here to the first part Most experiences have what I like to call a light and dark side (more on this is in an additional post). Now, we already know what the challenge is that people are putting their hands up for thanks to the first loop in my transformational performance design flow, (to see our challenge head over to my last post). The next step is start to create an opportunity of exploration. We want to create curiosity and intrigue - the light side. In this instance, a simple post on LinkedIn did the trick.

I had over 60 responses back, which give the time restriction I put in place, I was pretty happy with. I then labeled each person with a number and allowed my dog to pick them at random (long story!) Once I had my five people Christine, Eva, Josh, Joanna and Nick, I let all the non-winners know that unfortunately they hadn't been chosen. And that was it for Step 1. What is worth noting in this simple step is unbeknown to the participants, their experience began the minute they came across my post. The moment that triggered their curiosity and intrigue to explore.

Knowing that an experience starts before your participant thinks it starts is a great way to setting yourself up for success. Tapping into emotions and imagination beforehand is often an overlooked part of creating experiences. It’s also why I added in a period of wait time. Making my participants wait just a bit longer than the time I originally stated is a great little tool to use. However, be mindful this is a double-edge sword. Used correctly it's a fantastic tool to build more excitement and anticipation, places such as theme parks, Krispy Kreme or even Starbucks all do this to some extent - it’s actually part of the experience look up labour illusion. Making customers, participants etc wait that touch longer make the reward extra special - be it for the donut or when in a queue for a rollercoaster. We know the effect adrenaline has on our senses. However, making people wait too long or in the wrong situation can be a disaster. Look at anytime you've been for an interview and they have dragged the decision out over the weekend or when it comes to service design, making people wait for an efficient and fast service is the last thing you want. The last thing I want to mention is rules of play and safety, again this is something that can often get overlooked and can be tricky to manage when you want to keep the air of mystique. That being said it needs to be addressed right at the start, I know some people for example wouldn't be comfortable getting in front of the camera and sharing their adventure of creating a unicorn.

That’s why it's so important to create a transparent structure of what's coming and setting the expectations and agreements. This give the participant the opportunity to opt out at any time before, while, or after. If you don't set this upfront it will be the thing that breaks everything later on down the line… trust me I know this from experience. In the next article I will cover how friction is a great tool if used in right situation and the right amount.

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