Bond Express Reflect (BER)


Type of work: Product design, Service Design
Date: October 2019
Extent of the project: 1 weeks
Team Member:
Malaika Franks (Industrial Designer)


Bond, Express, Reflect is an engaging card activity designed to measure emtional stability of
human service professionals




Problem Statement

Within the service industry, there is a large trend towards mental and emotional erosion of workers due to the need to emphathize with traumas of people they are working with. Emotional stability is important in the context of human service professionals that their work is centered around other people’s needs.
Design Solution

We created a fun activity that human service professionals can easily engage with and be aware of their emotional status so that they don’t cause further damage to themselves or the communities they are working with and for.



Design Process




Research
Basic research about our user (human service professionals)




Who is human service professionals?

Human service professionals are defined as people working in the field of meeting human needs.
They are community organizer, caregiver, social workers, medical professionals, designers and many other people in various fields.



 What do they need?

Within the service industry, there is a large trend towards mental and emotional erosion of workers due to the need to emphathize with traumas of people they are working with.

Therefore, emotional stability is important in the context of human service professionals that their work is centered around other people’s needs. In order to effectively do this, we invited a fun activity that human service professionals can easily engage with and be aware of their emotional status so that they don’t cause further damage to themselves or the communities they are working with.

       
Source: The Washington Post



Current Methods for Measuring Emotions


Current psychological testings are mostly conducted through questionnaires. These questionnaires contain cold language and culture and difficult to analyze personally because it requires medical knowledge.

Even testings with artistic approach such as Rorschach Test that requires imagination and reflection are having similar issues.





SO,


“ We would like to create a simple and fun tool for human service professionals to lightly check on their emotional status in a work environment.”




Design Strategy



Our Methodology for Measuring Emotions: visual + writing + group
   Why can’t emotional measurement tool share a chill and fun mood?
To create this environment, we use three key elements in our activity:
visual, writing, group setting.


The use of visual stimuli and creative writing to access the subconscious of individuals’ emotion and leveraging the group environment of human service professionals.




Visual Elements: What would be the best type of image to get an emotive story?


We began our tool testing with 3 types of images: abstract, partially readable and recognizable object illustrations. We found that more recognizable the object is, more perceptive the responses were. Recognizable images definiely got a lot closer to the responses we wanted, however, it was very short does not correleate with person’s emotional state.



Abstract

“it is a elongated, morphed circle with smaller elements around it.”


︎

It was not really a story and it doesn’t relate to themselves in any way


Partially Readable
“Big circle and the other one looks like a dumbbell.”


︎

Similar non-descriptive responses
Recognizable
“Haunted house basement with a singular hanging light.”


︎

The answers were a lot more interesting for this image,
a person related it to their own emotions




Writing Element: How can we frame the guiding question to extract one’s emotion?


We needed to be more direct in getting people to voice their emotions before they write their story. So we decided to include some prompts in the writing activity. A fun and easily approachable prompt for people to imagine their emotion. The prompt shouldn’t directly ask people “what do you feel” but carefully offering a space to imagine their feeling to avoid triggering traumas or stresses.

Therefore, we provided abstract prompts like:



Reminder/Biases


Now, we designed the overall flow and steps for the activities. Before we move on to designing the entire process, we kept these elements in mind:1. What are our assumptions when choosing/making shapes?
2. What are our assumptions when listening to their interpretation?
3. How emotional security isn’t stagnant and so this is not only the reflection of that moment?




How this could work in a group setting?

In the test, we noticed that doing test in proximity to another person got people really excited to share and engage with the activity more. We found that this format of the activity actually worked really well. The content of people’s stories were also, and finally, giving us the response we wanted to see. There was a strong correlation between their stories and the emotions. They even followed the exercise through opening up about their emotions within the story. This showed we were had finally found the exercise which worked. However, there wasn't enough guidance within this activity and without us there they wouldn't have known what to do or why to do it. So we need to create a structure for the entire activity



Design Instruction
we initially created and tested a set of instruction to guide user through the activity


Instructions first copy


1. Get into groups. We recommend size of 4-5 people per group. 2. Each person should have a piece of paper. (template: shows an example of how they can format their papers) 3. Randomly select one mood card and two object cards. 4. One the paper, each person write their answer to the question card. 5. Create a story that uses the two objects and your answer to the question. 6. After everyone in the group is finished, regroup and share your stories! (Either openly reading it out of folding it and anaonymously reading each others stories)

Findings


Realizing there was a need for further guidance we made a template for the story based section and descriptions to explain the importance of the activity


        Instructions second copy





Final Design


packaging


Simple card box which easily approachable to everyone






Cards

20 objects and questions cards









Guidance


phamphlet with card game that can guide users through the experience. Including step by step instructions, a example layout of the story, and descriptions explaining the importance of each part of the activity





Stories


Check how people’s stories are different from each other and think about how that could tell your feelings!




User Scenario