Apr 29·edited Apr 29Liked by Greg Jordan-Detamore

Love it! This post brings a couple related ideas to mind.

Something we witness in our work is that the people performing the tasks that originate from service design and/or industrial engineering (service blueprints, business process models, etc.) tend to have very different backgrounds (and sometimes no formal training in either discipline).

In practice, you can get any number of people to follow the methodology to produce a journey map, etc. but the fidelity of the work depends a lot on the individual's training and experience (e.g. to focus on the right problems, ask the right questions, recognize bias and blind spots, get authentic responses in interviews, etc.). The methodology mainly serves to yield a recognizable output. The individuals (and how they attend to different facets of a problem) largely control what insights and recommendations can be drawn from the outputs.

I tend to see a lot of attention to decisions about what activities to do (journey maps, etc.) and not as much to decisions about *who* performs them. Organizations tend to simply match a role to a task, without going deeper. This is maybe because service designers advertise themselves as "universal" researchers, who can work on any problem. In more mature disciplines, it's recognized that the title of a role is not sufficient. For example, in software, organizations recognize that their in-house developers don't necessarily know how write embedded software. The developers can count on their training to be able to *learn* how to do it, but they wouldn't claim to be able to do it *today*. In service design, I haven't yet seen this sort of specialization come up as a consideration.

Bringing things back to your post, related to the above, your post distinguishes two common backgrounds for people working in this area, and how that background can bias what they pay attention to, and what conclusions they tend to draw.

Expand full comment

That’s a really interesting point!

I think another challenge here is that both fields are quite niche, and also somewhat fuzzy as to precisely what does or doesn’t fall under their umbrella.

Expand full comment