You can create the world’s greatest PowerPoint and the most engaging description of an idea, but nothing cultivates buy in like a well thought-out prototype.
At the Future of Web Apps Conference Aza Raskin, co-founder of Massive Health, gave a great presentation on how to make a successful prototype. The main ingredient giving it the ability to let people move and see your idea on their terms, then make their own contributions. You want to lead your audience most of the way, but ultimately let them take the last step. “People will believe an idea so much more if they think they came up with on their own,” says Raskin.
Making suggestions to a prototype creates a sense of ownership, which makes participation down the road that much easier. The most important component of software design isn’t programming or the design itself, Raskin believes. It’s culture. You need to understand that and have the soft skills to work with people to make things happen.