“There are three principal means of acquiring knowledge…observation of nature, reflection, and experimentation. Observation collects facts; reflection combines them; experimentation verifies the result of that combination.”Denis Diderot
The French philosopher Diderot would have been helpful in guiding many companies towards becoming learning organisations: observe what is going on, reflect on why and what it means, and then design experiments to confirm your suspicions.
As organisations struggle to become more agile, more resilient and more aligned with both consumer and employee needs, many others have commented on the importance of an experimental mindset. booking.com for example is reported to run thousands of experiments every year.
But how do you generate 1000 experiments?
Break it down. Identify different groups of people or departments inside your organisation (say 10) and ask them to run 100 each.
But how do we start to generate 100 experiments?
Here is a diagram that helps identify 20 ideas to stimulate ideas for experiments. It’s up to your teams to discuss and explore just 5 ideas that will generate useful data to support decisions and further experiments and a team of even 2-3 people will be able to do that easily (20 times).
The goal is to learn about your consumers, your supply chain, your markets and how well your products and services meet human needs. By running 1000 experiments every year your organisation will be better prepared, better informed and better able to respond to whatever the world throws at you.