The Value Plan: Live Case Study #1 - Metabirds

Week 7: PWS and the Question tree!

Hello, everyone!

This week we had a chance to conduct three interviews with online educators. This allowed us to obtain more insight into the e-learning process and see what the main challenges faced by educators are.

Before we start on describing our findings, we would like to tell you about the important categorization that we came up with.

We have divided e-learning customers’ behavior into 3 categories:

1) Self-development

Involves self-interest in taking online courses; usually, the aim is to improve professional or personal skills (self-interest)

2) Professional development

People who have to take online courses as part of a corporate training (obligatory)

3) Mandatory classes

Online classes that students have to take as part of university courses

We think that such categorization is important for a thorough analysis of LRTC. The point is that different categories involve completely different customer’ behaviors that, in turn, influence users’ motivation, interests in taking courses and accordingly lead to different challenges for educators.

We were lucky enough to interview 3 educators from each of these categories.

Category one: Self-development

Educator: An expert in graphic design; Offers courses on his own online platform
  • Management: Requires the automatization of some of the back-end processes, improvement of which would lead to a more “synchronous” environment (Faster matching of students with classes)

Category two: Professional development

 Educator: A co-author of professional online courses for a big corporation.
  • Communication: The communication channel with students and lecturers is weak. If a student does not understand materials during the course, he has to write an email to the supervisor of the course. This process seems to be inefficient and leads to an asynchronous experience. Which, in turn, leads to a weak understanding of a subject.

Category three: Mandatory classes

Educator: A professor at University. Teaches online classes that are obligatory for undergraduate students.
  • Management: Also requires the automatization of some of the processes, especially conducting surveys, which is currently done by Google docs.
  • Communication: Most communications are done through emails, which leads to an asynchronous environment.

Brainstorming similarities in 3 categories of problems

Having looked at all of these challenges we tried to find a common ground. What is the universal problem that covers both communication and management issues?

If both of these issues had been resolved, this would have led to a more synchronous, personalized e-learning experience. After discussing this within our team, we came up with the Problem Worth Solving of online educators:

“Online educators struggle with offering a personalized experience on online platforms”

This led us to the SEED QUESTION!

The SEED Question is the starting point upon which all our further efforts on addressing the LRTC’s problem will be based.

The team’s discussion led to the following SEED question:

“What is the best strategy to help educators with providing a personalized learning experience on online platforms for the highest possible value for educators, online platforms and online learners?” 

To uncover the essential ways of tackling this question we constructed a question tree.

Building the SEED tree

Answering this tree would help us to understand the market, the customers, the competitors better and come up with a solution.

Next week, we are planning to work on step 7 of the value plan! Stay tuned!



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