Let’s be real -getting buy-in from your company’s main stakeholders for a design sprint is hard. After all, you’re taking a whole week off everyone’s schedule to engage them in a program that they don’t fully understand, and sounds a bit too good to be true.
So we’ve detailed 3 key arguments you can use to convince your company’s stakeholders, so that you can begin facilitating your first design sprint.
1. “Everybody doesn’t have to be in the room for the entire week”
Rip that big misconception badge right off at the start. Primary stakeholders need to be there in the beginning and on other key days. Teach your company’s stakeholders about the process and why their contribution matters on those specific days. Reiterate that the process, and by extension you, will be highly respectful of your time. You don’t need your CEO to be in the room while you put together the prototype.
2. “If we invest the time now, you will save potentially hundreds of thousands of dollars later down the line.”
User research is not a cost, it’s an investment. Say that as many times as you have to, bring it up during the company lunch, and print it on a plaque and paste it in the common room. Consistently communicate🎤 that investing in a 5 person round of user testing saves you money down the road. There are dozens of company case studies that talk about how investing in user research saves the company thousands of dollars down the road.
3. “By testing with users within a week, we avoid brainstorming arguments.”
The sprint, like any good UX focused process, puts the user first. There’s no arguments between the CEO👨💼 and development team, because the user data at the end of the process negates all of that.
For example, it’s hard about why adding a share button will completely vault you over the competition when your user data shows that your users can’t check their order history within 3 clicks.
4. “All key stakeholders will REALLY be aligned, meaning we don’t need to have 30 min standups every day.”
Drive this point home. Investing time now into this grueling process frees up so much time down the road. No more 30 minute standups (they’re more common than you would think), no more monthly skype calls to update the team on the 9th feature scope document📜, and no emergency meetings because a feature that was supposed to be ready was de-prioritized somewhere along the way.
There are plenty of other smaller objections and issues people can bring up, but these 3 talking points will solve the bulk of your issues. And always remember, your design sprint will not go smoothly the first few times. And that’s ok! Just go with the flow, and gently bring participants back into focus. Don’t get flustered and drop the process because the discussions went off the rails.