Service Design in Practice

Jo Carter
Jo Carter
Jan 16, 2019 · 4 min read

How to turn theory into practice

James attended an excellent workshop at the conference he went to last summer -he came away feeling totally enthusiastic about the subject with a commitment that he was going to change his practice. Six months later, nothing has changed. Indeed, the workshop material is a dim and distant memory which may or may not see the light of day ever again.

Sound familiar?

Those of you reading this who’ve passed your driving test will know that you don’t really start learning to drive until the moment you pass your test. This is because the real learning happens through practice. And the sooner you can do this the better.

Photo by Jake Hills on Unsplash

I’ve been thinking a lot about how we give learning the best chance of “sticking”, resulting in sustained change in practice. This is in the context of a new learning and development programme “Service Design in Practice” which we have developed in partnership with the Chartered Institute of Housing, Cymru. Though the thinking will apply to other subject areas.

We’ve teamed up with Melys Phinnemore, an expert in leadership and workforce development to co-create and deliver the content for the programme.

We’ve been thinking about how we might develop something different. Something that pays attention to the whole learning environment. In particular, we thought about how we might support people to take that all important leap from learning the theory to seeing, feeling and experiencing doing things differently for real. Because we know this is how you can accelerate learning.

Learning the theory is fairly straight forward. Putting it into practice requires determination and resilience and can be difficult, especially without support.

Some of the ingredients we think may have promising results are:

  • get participants to contract with us at the start
    this sets the ground rules and expectations from both sides. Often missed with an “in and out” workshop, but important if we’re to understand each other from the start.
Melys and Jo talking about Service Design in Practice

Melys and I will be testing out these elements in our new learning and development programme, Service Design in Practice, which helps public servants learn service design tools and methods and put them into practice.

We want to know which of these elements have the biggest impact on outcomes for participants and we will share what we learn.

The pioneer cohort will be running from 20March 2019 in Cardiff in partnership with CIH Cymru. The pioneer cohort is running at a reduced price.

Registration is open right now!

Find out more.

If you like this, please do follow me on Twitter.

I work at The Satori Lab. Working together to deliver improvement in public services at scale.

We focus on helping public servants become more effective with digital, data, design and systems change.

We’re on LinkedIn and Facebook too.

Service Works

Mad about service design, training, workshop facilitation…

Service Works

Mad about service design, training, workshop facilitation with government and third sector. @serviceworks4 @jocarter_64

Jo Carter

Written by

Jo Carter

Founder of @serviceworks4 - instigator of @UrbanistasCDF & @CardiffSD * family * design thinking * travelling * music | dysgwraig

Service Works

Mad about service design, training, workshop facilitation with government and third sector. @serviceworks4 @jocarter_64

Medium is an open platform where 170 million readers come to find insightful and dynamic thinking. Here, expert and undiscovered voices alike dive into the heart of any topic and bring new ideas to the surface. Learn more

Follow the writers, publications, and topics that matter to you, and you’ll see them on your homepage and in your inbox. Explore

If you have a story to tell, knowledge to share, or a perspective to offer — welcome home. It’s easy and free to post your thinking on any topic. Write on Medium

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store