It’s nice to be back in Aspen for the Ideas Festival, and unsurprisingly, I’ve spent a lot of time in sessions around creativity and innovation.
Perhaps the best message I took away was the concept of “designing with empathy.”
Kelley talked about the development and launch of a GE scanning machine that could do incredibly powerful things, particularly in the field of pediatric medicine; but the machine scared the daylights out of kids. Over 80% of them were so frightened that they had to bring in an anesthesiologist to keep the kids still.
The GE product designer was gutted to hear that his incredible work had caused such a reaction – and so GE went back and took another run with a redesign that included graphics to make it look like a pirate ship! Kids were told to pretend they were hiding from the captain and to stay as still as possible, and it worked. After the redesign, less than 10% of kids that went into the scanner required the anesthesiologist.