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To Do Something Remarkable – First Invert the Question

Submitted by on October 18, 2010 – 2:06 amNo Comment

I am always struck by how powerful it can be to be driven by a single, counterintuitive question.

Consider this one: In early 2007 the Spanish bank BBVA asked IDEO to re-think their self-service channel – the automated teller machine (ATM) from scratch. The question was not how to further automate the teller, but rather how to humanize the machine.

In simply inverting this line of inquiry (let’s focus on humanizing the machine) you find entirely new possibilities for innovation.

Focusing on self-service as a means to lower  transaction costs  will  give you automation.  Focusing on simplicity and human needs will give you something remarkable.

This video walks through the process of how a team from IDEO went about rethinking the ATM experience and is worth watching not for the future of the ATM – but for how a company can simply invert their normal question – or objective – and begin striving for something remarkable.

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