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Reduce risk and validate your product early through a Product Design Sprint

Product Design Sprints are essential starting points when kicking off a new feature, workflow, product, business, or solving problems with an existing product. You build a common understanding of the problem with the team and get an early indication of the market fit for the solution.

Teammates brainstorming and writing ideas on a whiteboard

Save money by learning before you build, not once you get to market

A Product Design Sprint reduces the inherent risks in successfully bringing products to market. We’re able to get some initial validation for that solution by rapidly building an understanding of the problem, coming up with varied solutions, prototyping and testing our assumptions early.

Your whole team, aligned with one purpose

Participating in a Design Sprint orients your entire team and aims efforts at hitting clearly defined goals. The schedule and design exercise allows all members to participate and have equal say in what is prototyped.
Pining up storyboard during a product design sprint

What is a Product Design Sprint?

It is a 5-phase exercise which uses design thinking to develop a product or feature idea into a prototype that can be tested to help us fill our riskiest knowledge gaps, validate or invalidate our riskiest assumptions and guide future work.

  • Phase 1: Develop a common understanding of the working context including the problem, the business, the customer, the value proposition, and how success will be determined
  • Phase 2: Generate insights and potential solutions to our customer’s problems.
  • Phase 3: Come up with a realistic prototyping storyboard and develop an assumptions table to guide our prototyping and testing phases.
  • Phase 4: Build a prototype that can be tested with existing or potential customers. 
  • Phase 5: Test the prototype with existing or potential customers.

We had a good sense of the business model and we knew our storefront was going to be a website. I was not a tech person and design and development were going to be a key part of building the business.

A headshot of Hunter Gorham
Hunter Gorham
CEO and Founder Joydrive

What we deliver during a Product Design Sprint

Early validation for your product

During the sprint we decide what to test, how we’re going to test it and then run a handful of interviews to validate our assumptions. You gain invaluable insights into the mind of your customers in a concise timeframe.

Team understanding and alignment

The sprint is designed to get all team members aligned on both why and how we’re going to solve problems. We generate ideas together which fuels innovation. Because we working together, you’ll get buy-in from your whole team.

A prototype and recorded interviews

You will have recordings of the interviews and the prototype that we created but the most important deliverable is the understanding you get at the end of the sprint. We’ve had several client’s use the prototype to secure funding from investors to continue to move their product forward.

We bet everything (90% of our cash) on hiring thoughtbot and working on improving the core tech of the product. It was a very risky decision, but our bet paid off.

A headshot of Dominic Jackman
Dominic Jackman
CEO and co-founder, Escape the City

We share how we approach Product Design Sprints on our blog

How D&D Made Me Better at Facilitating Design Sprints

Insight into how nerdy collaborative board games can help you level up your skills as a facilitator of product design sprints.

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Ways I've experimented with Design Sprints to make them more sustainable.

I've found facilitating a product design sprint really draining for my team and me. Here are a few things that we've tried to make them more sustainable.

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My First Product Design Sprint

Product Design Sprints are great for validating ideas and concepts, and developers can both learn and add a lot to them.

Read more

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