This past weekend was a special one, filled with inspiration and knowledge; school was in session at The University Of Botswana via a Universal workshop called Global Service Jam, hosted by Dr Yaone Rapitsenyane since 2015.
Some of you may be thinking,what does education content have to do with this lifestyle blog?
Well my friend education is the root of all knowledge, wisdom and innovation.
Every year a group of academics, students, designers, cooperates, consumers and even unemployed people meet simultaneously at locations all over the globe.
A secret theme is revealed at a specific time throughout the world to launch the jam, and this year the theme was BLUE.
Every team is tasked with creating a prototype of a completely new service.
The set up of the gathering is light hearted, with music plying in the background that includes lyrics with the word ‘jam’ created a relaxed, fun ambiance while groups bounced ideas off each other
The aim is to tackle concepts, exhausting all aspects that contribute into making a functional prototype built around the theme.
Global Service Jam is about experimenting and teamwork.
Only 48 hours are given to the groups all over the world to produce a prototype for the service.
International video calls take place during the workshop, as a unifying gesture and of course friendly competition.
At the end of the day brand new ideas are developed,and collections of prototypes are published to the world, also with intensions to further the projects into full-fledged businesses.
Annual Jammers like Goitsone Ketlhalefile’s group from 2016 was the best out of the lot, under the theme ‘great customer experience’ they came up with a prototype App that help University Students maximize their allowance by getting discounts from shops.
With the right business people attending and judging the workshop, their company has been registered for, and has received free sponsorship from programmers to start up the app.
Imagine brainstorming ideas with a group of people you’ve never met before and ending up with a business rightfully owned by all the members in the group.
It’s an exciting, quick response way of starting business concepts.
Gone are the days when a product was just a product and a service was just as.
These days’ consumers are after experience. Which is a big part of lifestyle.
Chatting with Gaborone Global Service Jam host, DrYaoneRapitsenyaneon more insight of the jam.
Q: Where and when did Global Service jam start?
A: it started in 2011, that’s when the first Jam took place in Germany by designers Adam Lawrence and Marcus, who I constantly keep in touch with since the first jam.
Q: How did you get to know about the Jam and why introduce it in Botswana?
A: I came across this Jam when I was a student in the UK in 2013 and after completing my PHD I came back and thought it would be useful here.
After all Botswana has a growing field of design, and this is the new direction.
There are products alone, which don’t really sell.
There has to be a product plus a service.
We are now in a space of product service system design, so now you design a product and a service simultaneously.
Through the jam we try promote that and sensitize the design community and the service businesses, that services are designed.
This is not really present here in Botswana.
We have recently developed a modulein the University of Botswana called Service design for sustainability.
The aim is to get our designers to know and appreciate the importance of designing services.
Q: What is the end result of the prototypes built after the service.
A: We would like to support the guys who win, and are interested in transforming into a business, by supporting them through the technicaland linking them with the right business people who can broaden their business networks in the business community.
Q: How many countries are involved in this Jam?
A: This year there were a 120 locations participating.
Last year it was 97, so the numbers increase every year Globally.
Q: What are the expectations for next year?
A: This year the turn out wasn’t bad, we had 60 people registered and about 50 showed up for the opening day, which was good, so defiantly bigger numbers for next year.
Q: Were do you advertise?
A: We rely on social media advertising, through a Facebook page, Twitter and recently Instagram.
We usually we advertise a few months before a jam, but this time around we will keep active on the platforms throughout the year, to see the impact for the next jam.
The level of exposure received from this experience is of high academic and social value.
I’m so glad to have been a part of something life changing because service is the future of design.