Lean Experiment Exercise

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In this exercise, you learn how to validate an assumption by turning it into a testable hypothesis. You may find it useful to use the Lean Experiment Template that you can get from your Shiftup workshop facilitator. (You can also get this template by signing up for the free Shiftup Program.)


1. Individual brainwriting

Do this first step individually, for three minutes.

Think of ways in which you believe a workshop experience can be improved for all participants. What would be useful? What would be valuable? What would be worth trying?


2. Collect and choose ideas

From this step forward, work as a team.

Collect and briefly explain the various ideas from team members at the table. Pick just one idea that together you believe would be most valuable.


3. Define hypothesis

The idea you picked is an assumption for an improvement. Use the Lean Experiment Template to turn it into a testable hypothesis.

Your test is allowed to run for hours or even until the end of the day. It is your decision whether or not to make the other teams aware of which tests you are running.

For example:

We believe participants appreciate book recommendations. We will know we’re wrong when we maintain a flip chart with book titles mentioned during the class and as a result get fewer than two people taking a photo of it.


4. Implement the test

You have chosen a test to run during the first day of the workshop. (You may want to keep your hypothesis and test secret. You don’t want the other teams to influence the test results inadvertently.)

Take responsibility for doing the tests and (before the end of the day) report back to the whole group what the outcomes are of your tests. The facilitator may ask you what the best time is for discussing your test results.

For a workshop, you must pick a test that generates results on the same day.


5. Evaluate the lean experiments

When the time is right, discuss the test results from your lean experiments with the whole group.


Sign up to the free Shiftup Program and receive the Lean Experiment Template with several other free goodies!


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