How to create the perfect organizational prototype

It’s time to create the most effective organizational prototype; here’s how you do that. Based on dozens of workshops and created prototypes. A perfect organizational prototype is small, tangible and really achievable in a given timeframe. You have to have obvious what steps you are going to take, to validate the prototype. 

1. Define the theme

What theme (or category) are you going to focus on with the prototype. On our site, we use the 3 main themes, inspired by Daniel Pink’s research to what really motivates us. He describes 3 themes:

  • Purpose – Why we are doing what we do
  • Mastery – The urge to get better at something
  • Autonomy – The urge to self decide on important/impactful decisions

2. Define the target group

It is also essential to know who the target group is.  So, who is it for? An individual? A team? A department?
Or are you aiming big: for the whole organization? Keep in mind that a successful prototype does have a clear target group; it’s far easier to prototype in a smaller group than in a big one.

3. Describe the case

What is the case for this prototype? Why is the change needed? What is not working the way you want it to work. 

4. What steps are you going to take?

Think of a small, experimental way to start the change you want for the theme & target group. 

  • What actions have to be taken to start prototyping?
  • When can you start?
  • Who do you need?
  • How do you excite people for it?

5. When is this a success?

So now you have to define when this prototype is a success. 

  • When did the prototype work?
  • How can you measure that?
  • Define key performance indicators
  • What results would you like?

6. Check: Can you really start tomorrow?

Is it possible to start with the prototype right away? The two questions you can ask yourself are:

  • Good enough for now: Does it address the problem?
  • Safe enough to try:  It does not cause us harm or set us back?

If not, redesign your prototype. If yes, write down what resources you need.

7. How are you going to scale?

Creating a prototype is a small model of real change. So it’s time to think about ‘after the prototype phase’.

  • What if it works?
  • How can you scale the impact of the prototype?
  • What/who do you need for that?

8. Set a date to evaluate the prototype

An effective prototype does have not only a fixed scope and target group, but also a fixed time frame. So agree on the date the prototype period ends, and thus the moment you evaluate the results.

9. Share your prototype with the community

Your prototype can get even better if you share it with the community. By post it on this platform and get feedback in Slack or on the platform. 

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