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This workshop focuses on developing four core attributes of ethnographic thinking: cultivating curiosity, deferring judgment, expanding awareness, and adapting thoughtfully.

Participants learn to internalize these modes of thinking through interactive presentations and experiential learning exercises that help them develop an ethnographic mindset. All workshop content is focused on applying the benefits of ethnographic thinking to everyday work environments.

Why Ethnographic Thinking?

When you learn to think like an ethnographer, you gain a set of very powerful skills. These skills help broaden your perspective, provide structure for continual learning, encourage mutual trust and respect, and encourage flexibility.

Beyond this, benefits to your team and/or organization include:

  • Cumulative Insight. By exposing your mind to more and more ideas over time from many different perspectives, you begin to discover new and unexpected connections between those ideas, and build even more ideas inspired by those connections.
  • Cultural Alignment. By deferring judgement and integrating sometimes unfamiliar modes of thinking in your work, you can escape the limitations of presumptions and organizational biases to better align offerings with customers’ / constituents’ cultural contexts and behavioral needs.
  • Behavioral Awareness. By opening up your senses to the unfamiliar and watching for unstated social cues, you can discover often unrecognized cultural rules that drive the behaviors of customers, stakeholders, and constituents.
  • Thoughtful adaptation. By developing a flexible mindset, you can more easily reframe risk and learn from experiments, while maintaining focus on larger objectives.

The workshop is led by seasoned applied anthropologist Jay Hasbrouck, author of the book Ethnographic Thinking: From Method to Mindset, in conjunction with a staff of highly experienced research professionals.

Who Should Attend?

Any team that needs to break out of a restrictive or reductive mindset and transform their ways of working and thinking to better understand customers, stakeholders, or constituents in order to stimulate more creative and innovative ways to meet their needs.

What’s the Schedule?

This workshop consists of four sessions. Duration, timing, and content can be tailored to the specific needs of each team.

 

SESSION 1: CULTIVATING CURIOSITY

Framing:

  • Let’s Get Small: The Benefits of Naiveté and Thinking Like a Child
  • A Parallel Universe: Rethinking the Familiar

Field Exercise:

  • Shadow a Friend
  • Share-out, Challenges, Reflections

Applications to Daily Work Practices:

  • Forming a Curious Habit: Thinking Outside of Professional Paradigms
  • Increasing the Odds: Discovering Unexpected Opportunities

 

SESSION 2: DEFERRING JUDGMENT

Framing:

  • It’s Not All About You: Understanding Cultural Logics
  • What is Common Sense, Exactly?: Battling the Myth of Intuition

Field Exercise:

  • Befriend a Stranger
  • Share-out, Challenges, Reflections

Applications to Daily Work Practices:

  • Empiricism and Meaning: Building Interpretive Skills
  • Burrs Under the Saddle: Challenging Judgments & Assumptions

 

SESSION 3: EXPANDING AWARENESS

Framings:

  • You Really Shouldn’t: The ‘Sayable’ and the ‘Unsayable’
  • Outta Sight: Reading Social Scripts

Field Exercise:

  • Modified Derivé
  • Share-out, Challenges, Reflections

Applications to Daily Work Practices:

  • Synesthesia: Improving Peripheral Awareness
  • Not Really that Scary: Navigating Unfamiliar Settings

 

SESSION 4: ADAPTING THOUGHTFULLY

Framing:

  • Far Out: Appreciating the Unexpected
  • Not Home, Not Work: Serendipity and Spaces Between

Field Exercise:

  • Discovering and Appreciating Other Logics
  • Share-out, Challenges, Reflections

Applications to Daily Work Practices:

  • You Failed…Next?: Incremental Risk and Learning from Small Failures
  • The Restaurant at the Edge of the Universe: Embracing Ambiguity

 

What are the Details?

Pricing is per seat and varies depending on location, venue, and other factors. Feel free to get in touch with any questions by using our contact form.