culture design starts with you
Tools to print and use to kickoff Culture Design
yourself and with your team
"Our brains are programmed to pay attention to the unusual - something different. Incorporating novelty such as humour, movement, or music, into strategies helps the information attract our attention"
(Richards, 2004)
It is probably the result of too many years in advertising or a side-product of my conversation with Daniel Fogg about 'influence through memorable ideas'. But the reality is that to create tools that help people become Culture Designers I knew I had to make them memorable.

Taking concepts from the academic world straight into people's day to day did not seem right. I learnt as well, doing research, that memory helps humans keep the most important chunks of information and discards everything that seems irrelevant (Richards, 2004).

"To establish a more durable memory, we need to prevent incoming information from being dumped. We accomplish this by associating it meaningfully with knowledge that already exists"(Richards, 2004). When one of my acronyms spelled 'VEUG', I could not resist myself to Madonna. Below is what happened next...
[Pop] Culture Design
The tools presented below are the outcome of my academic research and industry observations. Finding visual and contemporary digital content for some models, like Marshall Rosenberg's four part non violent communication, was difficult both on Youtube and Google search. For that reason, I've taken content from Marshall Rosenberg's existing PDF. Most of the tools are brand new and crafted only by me, some, like 'Get Real with Marshall' have original material from the researcher's work

'Get real with Marshall' tool
I learnt about Marshall Rosenberg at Hyper Island, he studied Nonviolent Communication (abbreviated NVC, also called Compassionate Communication or Collaborative Communication). "NVC begins by assuming that we are all compassionate by nature and that violent strategies—whether verbal or physical—are learned behaviors taught and supported by the prevailing culture" (Rosenberg, no date).

The objective of this tool is for the user to gain responsibility over what he feels, what he needs and packaging the communication in a way that allows her to make a request to another person. The name is meant to make it more approachable and memorable for users. The name and visual on the tool is a parallel between Marshall Rosenberg and the rapper Marshall Mathers, also known as Eminem.

I created the reflection tool to help the person take time to go over a situation, the feelings it triggers, the needs it does or doesn't fulfill and formulate a request to another person. This part of the exercise is individual. It is not necessary to share it with anyone. The second part of the tool is a visual adaptation of Rosenberg's existing NVC model, I did not add anything except from the new branding and pop culture / Eminem slant.

'Veug, strike a pose' tool
A memorable way of developing leadership skills
This tool helps individuals to write down a situation and reflect on specific aspects of the four leadership qualities identified in this project as key to facilitate Culture Design.

I noticed that the beginning of each leadership quality spelled "VEUG" so I did a mock-up of the tool with Madonna's 'Vogue' song motif and sent it to my collegues at Northern Quarter (NQ) through WeChat. They loved it. I posted it online as well and received positive feedback from the person in charge of leadership and culture at Ustwo. The acronym was working.

Receiving positive feedback about the memorability of my tools encouraged me to include it as part of my Industry Research Project.

Susan Wheelan's Bikers Club
Using Susan Wheelan's surname, Tash Willcocks suggested a motif around 'wheels' and biking. The reason I agreed and developed the theme of biking is because it implies being brave and having a lot of personality.

This tool invites teams to make sure they don't avoid conflict but rather work through it and move onto stage three. Also, taking from phrases from my personal experience and the testing phase of this project, I've included quotes that might help individuals identify which stage their on.

'What do you need?' tool
This tool helps individuals evaluate what behaviour, environment and emotions are out of his immediate possibilities. Whether it is a need to be more helpful at work, or calm in general, this tool helps the person create a train of thought. The outcome of the reflection exercise is to formulate an ask. This ask is then communicated to the team and a discussion takes place.

As has been said in the recommendations section of this project, the organisation is responsible for providing an emotion-friendly environment and differentiate between organisational and personal needs.
'Reflection' tool
"Get real with Marshall rocks."
Desi Chongarova
UX and Service Designer (London)
"I wasn't sure at first, but then I caught myself thinking about it while walking around. Very memorable."
Qing Qing Chen
Culture Design Facilitator and writer (Beijing)
Any meaningful organisational culture design effort will begin with the individual.
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