Point of View (POV) MadLib is a reframing activity that allows an individual or group to take a wicked problem and translate it into an actionable problem statement. If you haven’t heard of them, madlibs are phrase template word games where one player prompts others for a list of words to substitute for blanks in
a story. In this case, a madlib format provides a framework to develop the POV by creating a statement that defines three elements: a user, a need, and an insight into that user’s POV.
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What to do
- Organize people into pairs.
- Have each pair de ne a problem/issue for which they will create a madlib. In this case, it needs to be an issue about which the pair has some knowledge. For example, teenage girls require nutritious food to be healthy.
- Have pairs complete the following madlib: (user) needs to (user’s need) because (surprising insight).
- The (user) is the user of the solution, the (user’s need) should be a verb and the (surprising insight) is not simply the reason for the need, but a stepping stone to create a solution.
For example, instead of “A teenage girl needs more nutritious food because vitamins are vital to good health” try “A teenage girl with a bleak outlook needs to feel more socially accepted when eating healthy food, because in her neighbourhood social risk is more dangerous than a health risk.” Note how the later madlib is an actionable problem statement which gives the people who are developing solutions something to sink their teeth into to start solving the problem.
- Invite the pairs to try out a number of options to create a madlib for their problem/issue.
- Once everyone has an actionable problem statement, the statement can be used to start identifying solutions to the challenge.
- What was it like to try to understand another’s point of view?
- By defining the user’s need and a surprising insight about them, did it help you to better understand and articulate the problem?
- How might you use this activity in your day-to-day work in health care?