Douglas Ferguson

Douglas Ferguson is an entrepreneur, facilitator, and human-centered technologist with over 20 years of experience. He is president of Voltage Control, an Austin-based workshop agency that specializes in Design Sprints and Innovation Transformation. Prior to Voltage Control, Douglas held CTO positions at numerous Austin startups where he led product and engineering teams using agile, lean, and human-centered design principles. While CTO at Twyla, Douglas worked directly with Google Ventures running Design Sprints; he now brings this experience and process to companies everywhere. Douglas writes a regular series of Medium articles about thought leaders in the innovation space and is the co-author of a soon-to-be-published innovation playbook. He is active in the Austin startup community where he serves on the board of several non-profits, mentors startups, and advises early-stage ventures. Douglas spends his free time patching up modular synthesizers, playing guitar, and taking photographs. He graduated from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.

Recent Posts

Fast, Fun, and Powerful: Design Sprints

Jun 17, 2019 by Douglas Ferguson in meeting design (6 minute read)

Introducing Douglas Ferguson
The Lucid Meetings team is delighted to welcome our newest contributor, Douglas Ferguson. Douglas Ferguson is the president of Voltage Control, an Austin-based agency that specializes in Innovation Transformation.

We were introduced to Douglas through our network as the go-to facilitator to bring in when you want to run a Design Sprint.

What's a Design Sprint? In this post, Douglas tells us all about it.
— Team Lucid

We often know what we should do or what we want to do to make our product and services better. But, we don’t. Instead, what we have to do and what’s on fire at-the-moment usually takes precedence. So, when we want to make big shifts, it’s all about carving out time and focus. Design Sprints give you both.

Let me give you an example from one of my favorite Design Sprints: on-demand meal delivery company Favor asked me to facilitate a Design Sprint last year. They wanted to focus on how to improve the earnings of their “Runners" (the people who deliver the meals) by 10% while also cutting the number of Runners who found the job frustrating by half.

Tackling this problem with design had been on their mind, but they just hadn’t gotten to it. By dedicating time for a Design Sprint, they were able to kickstart important improvements.

"We started with all these ideas about what our users wanted and needed in the next version of our app. The design sprint made us rapidly validate these assumptions instead of getting months down the road and realizing we were designing things our users didn’t want or need. In one week, we were able to build a solid foundation for our redesign from real user feedback."

-Meg Nidever, UX Designer, Favor Delivery

Even better, the Sprint experience led to a renewed dedication to prototyping and user testing for the Favor team.

What is a Design Sprint?

A Design Sprint is like an all-inclusive retreat for your next great business idea. This timeboxed, self-contained process allows teams the opportunity to consider an existing problem or a new idea, gather insights on potential or current users, prototype ideas, and validate them all within about five days.

Read More...

Topics: meeting design