Trying out new techniques is both exciting and challenging. I introduced the concept of the Google Ventures Design Sprint to my team over a year ago, but it wasn’t the right time to try it out. Recently, we had a chance to run a Sprint. I got to facilitate this first ever Design Sprint for Herbalife.

Day 1 – Map

The Challenge

Our challenge was, “40% of new distributors don’t complete a first order. Increase the number of first purchases by new distributors.”

The Goal

Our goal was, “Build and maintain trust in our applications as well as between the distributor and prospect by setting clear expectations throughout the sign up process.”


We came up with a number of questions we wanted to answer in the sprint, but two bubbled up as most important.

  1. How do we build and maintain trust with our applications as well as the distributor/prospect relationship?
  2. How do we set clear expectations throughout the signup process?

The Map

Our first map

Where we ended, and the map we used for the sprint.

Our map started with the current process. It was important for everyone in the room to see what our current flow was to have a shared understanding. From there, it evolved as we interviewed experts, did our how might we, and came to a shared understanding of the problems and challenge.

Ask The Experts

We had experts from a number of different perspectives:

  1. Terry – Business
  2. Chris – Marketing
  3. Munish – Online contract
  4. Murali – Integration and Root

How Might We

Problems are just opportunities in disguise. Or so the old saying goes. This exercise helps us to reframe problems, issues, and limitations as opportunities instead of the former. The team stuck all of our “HMW”s to the board in any order. Once we had all of our opportunities up, we started to group them into themes. Things like “simplify” and “trust” were big themes, which aligned to our sprint questions.

Pick A Target

Picking a target can be challenging. This process calls for one use and one thing to prototype. At the end of the day, we chose to prototype the entire flow for the prospective new distributor. We decided that a distributor as a user was also needed.

Day 2 – Sketch

Lightning Demos

We each had an opportunity to show a site we know or use. The purpose of this is to gather competitive analysis, feature and visual inspiration, and see how our current solution stacks up.

Divide Or Swarm

Depending on the target the team chooses, there can be a lot ground to cover. We decided to prototype the entire flow, so we chose to divide. This lets the team generate sketches and ideas for a broad range of solutions.


The second day is all about drawing! For designers, that is the fun part. For other team members, it can be a daunting task. Thankfully, we have ways of helping our teammates. We help them by taking them through a designer’s process: notes, ideas, crazy 8s, sketch.


The team gathered notes alone, not conversing. This is important, as we want to form our own opinions on potential solutions. The team walked around the room jotting down things they liked, didn’t like and questions they had.


Once the team had notes, we spent time reviewing the notes and generating ideas. Again, this was alone without conversing. Conversing with others starts to form bias, which kills creativity. The goal of this exercise is to generate unique ideas. Once we had lists of ideas, we circled one or two of our individual best. Finally, we decided individually on our best idea.

Crazy 8s

This is likely the most challenging exercise for non-designers. You have one minute to sketch out an idea, eight ideas total. We took our best idea from the ideas section for this exercise. Generally, the first few ideas are easy to sketch. The challenging bit came around idea five, when the obvious exists. The beauty of crazy 8s is it forces you to think outside the box.

Solution Sketch

We used the 3 panel sketch as our method.

Day 3 – Decide

With all of our ideas generated and sketched, we have to decide what to build. We used another methodical process to build consensus.

Sticky Decision

Art Museum

We used the “art museum” technique to form individual opinions. As with sketching, it is important we form individual opinions. We taped the sketches we did on Tuesday to the wall, and everyone looked at them in silence.


Once we determined individually what we liked and didn’t like, we placed small dots beside the ideas we liked. You had an unlimited amount of dots, but it started to become clear which ideas stood out.

Straw Poll

Once we had our heatmap done, we each received 1 large dot we could place beside the idea we liked the most.


Our decider got three “magic” dots he could place beside the top 3 ideas. Those three dots determined the parts of our prototype we would build.


Our storyboard started at the initial interaction or “inciting incident”. It is important for your storyboard to do the same. much of this process is viewing the experience holistically.

Day 4 – Prototype

Pick the Right Tools

In order to create a prototype we could test in one day, we needed to pick the right tool for the job. We chose to use invision for our prototype.

Divide and Conquer

When the UX team creates prototypes, we are responsible for creating the pages and layout, gathering assets to use like imagery and icons, writing content and overseeing the consistent look and feel as well as continuity in the content. In order to create a prototype in one day, we needed to divide the work in to attainable chunks. We used the following roles:


Makers are responsible for making the pages, layout, etc.. Our makers were Erik, Sandra, Ana, and Alejandra.


Collectors are in charge of collecting assets, images, icons, etc.. They provide the makers with assets so the makers can focus on making the flow and interface. Our collectors were Michael and Alex.


Writers are responsible for creating the copy that goes in the prototype. Our writers were Tiffany, Alba, and Munish.


To keep everything consistent, we needed one person to bring it all together: the Stitcher. Our Stitcher was Murali.


The Interviewer is responsible for writing the test used to interview the participants on Friday. They should be unbiased, as to get honest results. Our Interviewer was Lindsay. She was added last minute, as the original interviewer chose a different role.


We spent all day Thursday creating our prototype. We utilized all the roles above. It took a bit longer than we thought it would, but we accomplished it in one day.

Do A Trial Run

Our prototype was finished in one day! It took a bit more time than anticipated, but by the end of Thursday, we were ready to test.

Day 5 – Test

Two Rooms

We set up one room for our participants, and one for our team.


We didn’t have access to end users, so we tested on internal employees that didn’t have a lot of experience with the product we were testing.


After we conducted the interviews, we talked about major issues, wins, and observations we saw throughout the day. Since this was the first time we did this process, we waited until Monday to do patterns and themes.

Patterns and Themes

On Monday, I went through and started organizing the notes and observations in to patterns. These were things on an individual participant level that more than one person wrote down. The intention behind this is to group things that multiple people wrote down. Priorities start to emerge from this. We can also see what main observations were true per participant. We can compare their persona to how our prototype performed.

Once I had major patterns grouped, we met as a team and started to identify common themes throughout the participants. The longer the chains of post-its, the larger the theme. Our main themes were:

  1. We didn’t set clear expectations before they got in to the workflow.
  2. We didn’t set clear expectations on what to do next after checkout.
  3. We established trust with the distributor image and contact info throughout the process.
  4. People are willing to and like using social media login.

Next Steps

Our next steps are to:

  1. Add clear expectations with a better “pitch” page.
  2. Add clear expectations on the confirmation page.
  3. Enhance the current OLC flow with distributor information.