Choosing a "Target"

Choosing a "Target"

Recipe step number

Day 1, Activity 5


Defining a focus area for the rest of the Sprint

Reading Time

4 mins


Why do this activity? Choosing a "Target" is about narrowing down the broad challenge into one high-value target area (target customer + target problem/moment). We utilize the knowledge we've collected so far, and the team's judgement, to choose a narrower target. This helps the team to focus so that everyone is making progress on the same specific problem for the entire Sprint week (through ideation, prototyping, and testing solutions).

Here's a video from Design Sprint agency AJ&Smart that shows how to bring the HMWs back on to the Map and use them to help identify a Target. (video starts at 5:57)

Key Tips

Tips from the Sprint Book – pages 83-94
  • Sometimes it's easy for the Decider to simply decide.
  • Typically, though Deciders want to engage the team and hear all inputs.
  • When Decisions are tough, use a simple straw-poll vote.
Key tips & learnings from Advance Concepts™
  • Choosing the Target is a key moment for the Decider. Be sure to give them all the time and help they need to make a well-reasoned decision. This could mean calling a break or asking for a “pass-the-mic” vote explanation from the team.
  • This is a great place to end a day. The team has diverged on data collection and then converges on the Target. This feeling of closure and direction is very important to the energy of the team.
  • Sometimes we as facilitators will analyze the top HMWs and prioritize those that feel the most impactful for the customer tests.

How to do this activity

Allow 20-40 mins
[10-15 mins] Place the top-voted HMWs
  • Bring the top voted How Might Wes (HMWs) from the previous activity
  • Start with the highest-voted HMWs first
  • Place the top-voted HMWs on to the most relevant area in the Map
    • The facilitator guides this process seeking input from the entire team about where the HMW belongs on the Map
    • If the team is quiet and is not volunteering input (a common situation), the facilitator should prompt and suggest where the HMW could fit, and seeks confirmation (or disagreement) from the team.
[10-20 mins] Use the HMW clusters to identify a "high-value" Target
  • Find the point on the map that has the most number of opportunities and one that seems like a high risk point in the customer journey.
  • If it's tough to decide:
    • Usually further "left" is a good idea. Solving customer problems "up the chain" are likely to resolve other problems "down the chain"
    • Use the Decider to make a final call
[5 mins] Circle the target
  • This will serve as the focal point for the rest of the Sprint.
  • Other areas can be iteration sprints or other initiatives for the project pipeline