WHAT IS THIS?
A great solution starts with a great problem definition. As designers, developers and journalists, we’re all working hard to improve our products and solve problems within our organizations. But how do you know you’re solving the right problem? And how can we work together as effective teams, delivering great work and improving our process over time? Join us on Wednesday, April 19 — the day before SND Charlotte — for focused conversation around problem solving and leadership development.

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WHAT TO EXPECT?
We’ll survey cutting-edge techniques for workshopping, design research, prototyping, and organizing teams for impact and agility. Expect a series of 60 to 90-minute breakouts that will cover different strategies for rapid prototyping and group research. You’ll receive a design strategy playbook with the exercises and techniques from Upstatement that you can bring back to your team. And by the way, we’re ditching our laptops in favor of small-group conversation in the great outdoors. The cost is $125 with a SND Charlotte workshop registration, or $200 for the stand-alone program. Your fee includes transportation to and from the conference hotel, a taco buffet lunch, supplies for the duration of the event, and an activity pass to take advantage of ziplines, ropes and other amenities at the U.S. National Whitewater Center

REGISTER FOR THINK BEFORE YOU MAKE

HOW WILL THIS HELP ME AT WORK?
‘Think Before You Make’ will give you a hands-on approach to modern design problem solving. We’ll learn how to research a problem and understand its nuances before choosing a solution, how to put together a creative brief to get buy-in, and how to approach problems starting small and building up organically. Activities like note-and-vote, brand definition exercises, mind mapping, mood boarding, and rapid prototyping are some of the techniques we’ll teach.

WHO IS THIS FOR?
Designers, managers, producers, the list goes on. To put it simply: People who work with people who have problems to solve. No matter your role at your organization, you can help frame problems in a way that facilitates great solutions. You do not have to be a developer or product manager to participate in this program.

WHO’S PUTTING THIS TOGETHER?
Organized by Upstatement, the Boston-based digital design and engineering firm, in concert with CQ Roll Call, the legislative tracking firm. Together, they’ll bring both an internal and external perspective to problem solving in newsrooms and for modern media products. ‘Think Before You Make’ is part of the 39th annual Society for News Design workshop and exhibition being hosted in Charlotte, North Carolina.

HOW DOES THIS FIT WITH THE CONFERENCE?
“Think Before You Make” starts Wednesday, April 19, at 9a when buses will leave from the Sheraton Uptown Charlotte headed for the U.S. National Whitewater Center. The program will start at 10a. At 3p participants will have the opportunity to participate in outdoor activities at the facility, dine at the on-site restaurant, and prepare for the opening reception, which starts at the Whitewater Center at 6p. There is a shower and locker room facility on site, but there will not be organized transportation to the hotel until after the opening reception concludes at 9p. Students who opt-in to ‘Think Before You Make’ must pay the $125 fee.

REGISTER FOR THINK BEFORE YOU MAKE