# Define

# Shadowing

Motive Understand the actions in a given context
Participants User, observer
Duration 1 day to 1 week

# What is it about?

The client or another actor involved in the process is accompanied for a certain period of time while interacting with the object of the project. The decisive factor here is that the observer does not intervene in any way, but remains as inconspicuous as a shadow.

# The goal

This method is intended to reveal how the person being observed behaves in the particular context and how he or she experiences the situation. It should reveal which feelings, expectations and abnormalities arise. Shadowing may reveal needs and potentials which would not be conveyed in the interview or discussion with the client, as they are not known to the respondents themselves.

# How to do it?

  1. Carefully select the person to be shadowed.
  2. Agree time and period as well as the topic of interest with the customer.
  3. Accompany the person, but do not interfere with his actions.
  4. Take notes during the observation or photograph or film the process.
  5. Do not ask any questions or comment the action of the user.
  6. Use your results for the following analysis.

# When do you need it?

Shadowing is most useful when it comes to researching the subliminal needs of the customer, of whom he is not aware. This method therefore offers a good supplement to direct surveys, such as interviews.

# Resources

  • Camera
  • Notebook

# Keep in mind

The observed person must be made aware that the accompanying person has no intervening function and he or she should behave as naturally as possible. In the normal case, however, a completely natural behavior is not achieved. This must be taken into account during the exploitation of the results.

# See also

Previous methods Alternative methods Following methods

# Sources

Curedale: Design Thinking: process and methods manual Design Community College Inc. ISBN: 9780988236240.