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What is Problem Framing and what can you expect from our Campus Workshop?

We've been running Campus, our London-based events programme, since 2017. Over the years we've welcome speakers from the likes of NHS, Revolut, PensionBee, Aviva, Moneywise and DWF.

Towards the end of last year we shifted the format a little. We moved away from the intimate speaker evenings towards a more immersive and hands-on workshop style. Now, you can come along and get directly involved in Design Sprints, Problem Framing, Growth Hacking and more. Last month, we ran our first Problem Framing Campus, so I thought I'd take some time to explain what this is and why it's such a fundamental part of the Design Sprint process.



What is Problem Framing?

Put simply, it is a way to uncover the right problem. A Problem Framing session will generate what we call a 'problem statement'. That statement is then carried forward into the Design Sprint to give greater clarity around the problem you are trying to solve. 

Why frame a problem?

The shared understanding of everybody involved means that day one of the Design Sprint is not spent trying to figure out the problem. The clear problem statement means you can avoid wasting valuable time and money, and significantly reduce the risk of creating the wrong solution.



Who do you need?

Much like Design Sprints, you need a cross-functional team of people with a direct interest in the problem. You also need a single, senior decision maker. And you definitely need a facilitator to run the session. A cross-functional team may include stakeholders, design team members and engineers, for example.

When should you frame a problem?

We recommend that Problem Framing takes place before a Design Sprint. You should also use it when you feel there's no shared understanding of the problem that you are trying to solve. And, it's a good exercise to use to determine which people to take forward as your Design Sprint team.

An effective Problem Framing session will align business and user needs, it will encourage buy-in from key stakeholders, and most importantly, it will create your problem statement. In its simplest form, a problem statement is the who, what, when and why.




At Campus Problem Framing, we explain all of this in more detail, as well as taking our guests through a mock Problem Framing session. We've designed this session around a fictional product called 'Movein". Teams treat this like a living, breathing project and together they read through the problems, sort them into areas of disorder, vote on the problems worth solving, and then choose which problems to take forward and focus on.

We also work through a number of interactive and hands-on exercises that explain the rest of the Problem Framing process. The workshop is split into five key areas; Discover, Context, Perspective, Align and Frame. We wrap up the sessions with a Q&A before getting a little more social with some food, drink and chat.



So if you're looking to uncover better ways to bring your ideas to life, whether they're websites, apps, platforms or just about anything else in the digital product space, come along to a Campus Workshop. It doesn't matter if you're in marketing, development, R&D or sales. These workshops (and processes) are for everyone, and cover Design Sprints, Problem Framing, Growth Hacking and more.

Campus is every month in the heart of London, and it's a fun and friendly place to get to grips with the latest in design thinking.

Register here.