Agitation and Elation in the User Experience

User experience map

“By approaching all human endeavors, including design, from the positive viewpoint of creating a product or service that is exceptional, virtuous, and life-giving, rather than merely a solution to a need or problem, we are more likely to produce something… that enhances the quality of life and not just solves the problem.” (Bate, P. and Robert, G. – Bringing user experience to healthcare improvement)

The goal of “agitation & elation” during design synthesis is to enable designers and stakeholders to better identify negative and positive experiences in the user journey and understand how they are related. In this example I used a map to describe the overall experience of growing food in the city (Chicago). The data was collected during user interviews, in-context observations and secondary research.

User-centered design encourages embracing users’ point of view during ideation stages. However, typical design processes tend to overemphasize negative user experiences (pain-points) and devalue positive experiences (delights), which are also beneficial in creating solutions. This might be because:

In order to observe both ends of the spectrum, project teams members and research sessions can be targeted to focus either on positive and negative experiences. Both types of data can be shared afterwards in order to build a common point of view.

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