The book Sprint totally overhauls your project management approach, allowing you to get from zero to prototype in just five days and determine whether or not your concept is worth pursuing more quickly than ever before. After a five-day sprint, you'll receive essential input on whether your marketing, customer experience, or product design ideas will work. Jake Knapp created this method while working on projects like Gmail and Google X, and he's since done sprints with over 150 companies, including Slack, Mozilla, and KLM Airlines.
A sprint has three components: a short deadline, a team working together in one room, and a working prototype.
Have a very tight deadline. Procrastination is no longer an option. According to Parkinson's Law, work always occupies the time assigned to it, hence the shorter the better. From Monday to Friday, a sprint normally lasts five days.
Bring together people with a variety of skill sets in one room. Engineers, marketers, designers, accountants, operators, and managers all benefit from having a diverse staff. Sprint teams are usually made up of seven people from various backgrounds. All levels of the hierarchy are invited.
The end product must be a working prototype. It's simple to come up with a list of hazy concepts. It's difficult to show anything useful, but it's the only way to obtain true user input.
These three basic guidelines ensure that everyone gets together for each sprint, sees eye to eye, works together, and produces something of actual value. This is why this method is ideal for small businesses with minimal resources.
Reverse engineer your roadmap by concentrating on the user's first interaction with the product. Defining the challenge, a task whose success depends on your ability to reverse engineer the end result, is one of the first steps in your sprint. Savioke, a service robot business, intended to create a delivery robot for hotels that could carry specific things to clients' rooms and save hotel personnel time. Knapp assisted them in determining who they intended to influence with this product by asking how and when it will be used. After all, the initial encounter between your (possible) customer and your product is the defining moment. That aim for Savioke turned out to be the moment a hotel guest opens the door and the robot presents them with a brand new item, such as a toothbrush.
Break down your project by combining sketches of current solutions to come up with something unique. While brainstorming alone may not be enough to win a sprint, it is an important element of the process. Jake recommends "flash demos," in which each team member has three minutes to showcase current solutions to various sections of the problem you're seeking to solve. After everyone has finished their presentations, Knapp suggests a brilliant method to level the playing field: everyone should draw basic representations of the ideas they presented. Sure, not everyone can draw well, but even a complete dummy like me can draw a simple web page or app screen design.