Category Archives: Case Study

Case Study: Duolingo’s Seductive New Look

Case Study-As far as online experiences that embed motivational design principles, Duolingo is the best I’ve seen. This free gamified language learning tool incorporates all three of the fundamental needs described by self-determination theory in a natural, engaging way. Although someone obviously thought very carefully about how to design the Duolingo program to maximize motivation, the experience feels very organic to the user (unlike some solutions that tack gamified elements on without a logical purpose). Continue reading Case Study: Duolingo’s Seductive New Look

How Toronto Gently Nudges Bikers and Runners to the Right

HowLast weekend I was in Toronto for a family wedding. I’ve been there before–it was a relatively quick 5 hour drive when I was in grad school and home to one of my best friends–but not in several years, and I never stayed downtown before this particular wedding. A big change is that since my last visit to Toronto, I’ve become a runner. Continue reading How Toronto Gently Nudges Bikers and Runners to the Right

Case Study: Asking the Right Question About Sex on an HRA

Case Study-In my previous job, one of the types of products I worked on was health risk assessments (HRAs). These tools are used by health plans, large employers, and other groups interested in managing the health of a population to assess the prevalence of certain health risks and guide decisions about interventions to offer. Typically an HRA is a long questionnaire about all types of health risks and behaviors, with some kind of feedback to the user at the end about the areas where improvement is most needed. As you might imagine, writing the questionnaire for these tools takes a lot of time and involves careful thought to make sure the questions included are meaningful and produce useful data. Continue reading Case Study: Asking the Right Question About Sex on an HRA

Cultural Artifacts Case Study: The J&J Credo

Cultural Artifacts Case Study-As anyone who reads my posts may have noticed by now, I’m fascinated by cultural artifacts–the visible, tangible evidence of what an organization believes and values, often in the form of office decor or signs. Cultural artifacts can be a powerful way to express and reinforce expectations for what it means to belong to a particular organization. They can also help to create a strong brand identity that resonates both with employees and external audiences. Continue reading Cultural Artifacts Case Study: The J&J Credo

Case Study: Fast Food, Twitter, and Relatedness

Case StudyMany if not most major brands have a social media presence now, including a Twitter handle. Some brands, especially ones with a service orientation (such as airlines or major retailers),  are able to use Twitter to forge connections with customers and facilitate better responses in times of trouble (ahem, flight delays and lost baggage). When a corporate Twitter account interacts with users, it fosters a sense of relatedness that motivates ongoing customer engagement. Continue reading Case Study: Fast Food, Twitter, and Relatedness

Case Study: Relatedness and Google Now

Case Study-A couple of months ago, I switched my cell phone from an iPhone to an Android. While it’s been an adjustment, I’ve come to really like my new phone (shout out to the FANTASTIC camera on the Samsung Galaxy S6, which has taken some nicer shots than my DSLR in head-to-head competition). One of the apps I really like is my Google Now widget. And no wonder–it’s a great example of a program that supports user relatedness (one of the three universal human needs described by self-determination theory) by personalizing the experience. Continue reading Case Study: Relatedness and Google Now

Usability Case Study: Twitter and the Extra Click

Usability Case Study-I was taught that a good rule of thumb in designing a web experience is to make key functionality as available as possible. The more clicks a user has to make to find the good stuff, the less likely they’ll bother. It’s not always true that more clicks mean a worse experience, but we did find, for example, that people were more likely to access a web coaching experience when it was fewer clicks away from their main portal homepage. Continue reading Usability Case Study: Twitter and the Extra Click

Case Study: Deflategate and the Psychology of Ingroup Bias

Case Study-If you follow sports at all, and perhaps even if you don’t, you’ve seen the news about “Deflategate.” The New England Patriots, my hometown NFL team, stand accused of deliberately under-inflating footballs for the AFC championship game against the Indianapolis Colts in 2015. Earlier this week, following the publication of an investigative report, the NFL handed down a punishment of a four game suspension for quarterback Tom Brady, and a $1 million fine and loss of future draft picks for the Patriots franchise. Continue reading Case Study: Deflategate and the Psychology of Ingroup Bias

Goal Setting Case Study: Lululemon

Goal Setting Case Study-Successful behavior change often includes deliberate and strategic goal-setting. Research suggests that people are most likely to achieve their goals that are SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time-bound), that they write down, and if they have created some sort of commitment and accountability for themselves, for example, by telling others about their goals. Continue reading Goal Setting Case Study: Lululemon

Cultural Artifacts Case Study: Whole Foods

Cultural Artifacts Case StudyCultural artifacts in the workplace can be a great way to remind employees and leadership alike of the core values of their organization.  Having items visually present in the environment that either relate to those values (such as photographs of patients in one pharmaceutical company I’ve visited) or explicitly state them (such as the Credo posted in every Johnson & Johnson office location) reinforce the idea of what it means to be a member of that company. Continue reading Cultural Artifacts Case Study: Whole Foods