There’s even opportunity on Mars, if you can ‘persevere’ through the setbacks and challenges. 😁

If you’ve gone through Step 1 and defined your initial Market Engagement Hypothesis (or MEH, for short) and have worked out some specific engagements you want to measure through an XYZ hypothesis in Step 2, then you’re all set for Step 3. In this step, we’ll be getting more specific about our audience, what they’ll be doing and why they’ll be doing it.

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Here’s what we’ve done so far

Our original MEH was written out like this:


“If I just put all of my previous failed experiments in this machine, I’ll surely get one that won’t fail!”​

If you went through Step 1 of our pretotyping series and have your initial Market Engagement Hypothesis (or MEH, for short) written up, it’s time to pair that down and get specific about what kind of engagement you want to measure. In other words, you’re going to work on what Alberto Savoia calls your ‘XYZ’ hypothesis.

If you’re not familiar with it, here’s what each letter stands for:

X: The percentage of your target market that you can engage/capture … Y: who your target market (or audience) is and … Z: what action your target market will take in regards…


MMMM…. story sandwiches. Definitely tasty and sometimes salty… but always goooood. 🤤

Using your imagination to think about how someone might engage with your idea, product or service comes fairly easily to most people. You can think of the ideal engagement… where they might be, what they might be doing… and how your particular approach would be the perfect remedy or solution for their pains or problems.

But sometimes you can’t quite articulate it, or you’re not quite sure how to go about it. Maybe you’re not completely clear on the product-market fit. You might be unsure about which audience you’re serving. …


Pretotyping is definitely easier than actual rock climbing… though you’ll get in better shape with the latter. 💪

Back in December, I started experimenting with pretotyping for my business, Dallas Design Sprints. The idea was the same as everything else I get involved with… in order to learn something properly, you have to put in applied practice.

My first experiment was with Miro Masters, a service that pairs Miro designers with people who need help with their projects. That one hit the 10% threshold, as I was able to place three different designers with prospects. I thought about expanding the service to include Mural, but decided to go in another direction.

For my second experiment, I teamed up…


I’ll take “Personalized Design Sprint Processes” for $300 Alex (btw, RIP to the legend that is Alex Trebek)

As we start the month of February, there are three initiatives related to the Global Virtual Design Sprint (or GVDS) that I’m undertaking:

Let’s talk a bit about that last one, since a lot of…


Picking a challenge for your sprint team in the GVDS is a lot like archery. It’s a long shot, but it’s doable. 🎯

After an extended offline conversation with Elisa Guardabasso on open innovation challenges, I have a pretty good idea of the structure we should use for our teams in GVDS6 this May.

Originally, the idea was to predominantly skew towards existing challenges by companies, organizations and groups that were looking for crowdsourced solutions to interesting problems. However, as I later learned, there are some challenges (no pun intended) with choosing this emphasis.

For starters, the process for submitting, refining and showcasing a team’s collective works is a lot more extended than what’s in the GVDS. We take about a month to…


Not bad for 90 minutes of work over two days in the evening. If only I could read my own writing… 🤓

The framework for the main virtual design sprint teaching modules are done. Next steps are to port all of this into Trello for better tracking, scheduling and linking to related references. It’s also going to be time to open the Pandora’s box that is Podia and see if it’s really what I’m looking for. All of that will happen tomorrow.

What’s interesting is how much a deviation the Experienced/Expert tracks are from the traditional recipe of a design sprint. I didn’t intend for them to end up that way, but it’s really not a bad thing.

Can they even be…


A snapshot from last summer’s VDS Mastery Program. And no, that’s not the real Ricky Martin.

I’m currently working through the final parts of the learning module I plan on putting into Podia.

I detailed some of that in an earlier journal entry, but the rest is pretty straightforward. Detail out every day of a virtual design sprint, the optional exercises a team can do, what I recommend and finally… what our featured facilitators would suggest to do.

The last bit is the post-sprint, which can be a bit tricky. …


The first team of the 5th GVDS, based largely in Europe, Hong Kong and Asia-Pacific

I had a message today from someone on LinkedIn, asking how I went about arranging the teams for the Global Virtual Design Sprint. They were concerned that, since they were in Amsterdam, they wouldn’t find others to team up with.

And I thought… that would make a great journal entry! 😎

Here’s how GVDS teams are arranged

First, we have participants who register fill out a rather involved Doodle form, asking them for their availability the third week of May. Why just that week? …


I use the paper to draft out frameworks from my mind. The glass is for drinking. The Dell, for Minecraft. ⛏

It’s 2:43 AM… the day after my birthday.

I’m working on the first part of the virtual facilitator / training module for the Global Virtual Design Sprint.

From the beginning of today’s work session, I didn’t want to try and draft out the entire educational experience from the very beginning. I know that as the details start getting hammered out for each section, I’m going to go back and change something.

So, I started with defining the different levels of learning engagement that each participant would have, based on their experience and current body of knowledge. From there, I would…

Robert Skrobe

I run Dallas Design Sprints, The Design Sprint Referral Network and Talent Sprints.

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