Most of us have faced a complex project at one time or another – one with multiple stakeholders with skin in the game, complex science or technical elements, or, at worst, a misinformation campaign.
You need to deliver the project (on time and budget) and at least maintain the trust of your stakeholders. Often in complex projects, there is also community involved who are deeply engaged – or will be when they know exactly how your project will impact them.
You can't just keep pushing forward. Complex projects require you to bring people together to co-design the solution. This will produce and better result and improve relationships.
But where do you start?
Out of a series of workshops with people who were experiencing a complex project just like yours we built the Authentic Co-design Approach. It has:
· A six-step planning and implementation framework
· Five Principles for co-design
· A set of conditions for success and
· Common challenges (always handy to know what you’ll face so you can prepare)
The six steps to guide you through any co-design process
Here's the six-step Authentic Co-design framework. Keep reading to find out more about each of the six steps and how you can get a copy.
Step One - CHECKING READINESS TO COLLABORATE
Are you ready to commit to collaborate? This step is all about working in your organisation and prepared to collaborate. Some call it the ‘readiness runway’. In this step you’ll gain the support of your leadership, make sure you’ve got the resources and that your colleagues and any other partners have the skills they need.
Step Two - BUILDING A SHARED UNDERSTANDING
It’s time to build a shared understanding among a group of stakeholders who might have diverse positions. This step is about building a shared understanding of the problem, the co-design process, and the context for participants.
Step Three - DECIDING WHAT WE CAN DO TOGETHER
This step is about generating agreement that the problem to solve is one that enables all participants to share in something meaningful. It’s important and at all times, refer to the Five Principles of Authentic Co-design
Step Four - CO-DESIGNING WHAT WE AGREED
This is the action step where participants work together to co-design what they have agreed to do. Sounds simple really! There are loads of tips and lessons to learn about how to actually co-design in the Authentic Co-design Manual.
Step Five - IMPLEMENTING AGREED ACTIONS
This step is about building something or actively delivering a decision that was co-designed. Of course, once you’ve planned something together, there is nothing more satisfying (and important!) than delivering it successfully.
Step Six - REVIEWING PROGRESS
Did we, collectively, achieve our goals? This is a process of genuine review by all who agreed to be involved. It is about adaptive learning, as well as holding each other to account that you did deliver on what was agreed. Super important to check in to see if we achieved what we aimed. If not, you might need to go back into Step 1, or perhaps to a later step depending on what the review found.
So, there we have it - six simple steps that enable you to authentically deliver co-design for complex projects that are full of multiple stakeholders and close to the heart of an engaged community.
You can try to deliver your project without your stakeholders or in secret – but if you have a complex project that’s not the way to deliver a project on time and budget.
Visit us at www.authenticcodesign.com