Every Friday at 5pm we have beers in the office. It’s nice, we clink, we pat each other on the back, we ask about plans for the weekend.

One Friday our Head of Design said:

“Hey, who fancies a 10-minute challenge?”

“Sure Dan what does it entail?”

At 5pm someone sets a ‘creative’ challenge – shared via Slack in the general thread – to whomever wants to take part. And 10 minutes later we gather at the beer fridge and share our ideas, sketches, mood boards, links, post-it notes, fully formed master pieces, etc.

For various reasons the 10-minute challenge was forgotten for a while. Last week one of our newer team members shared a blog post he had written and asked for feedback. I read his article, and gave him some feedback. It was all positive; he had approached his topic well, had broken it down, given examples, made it digestible and provided a good narrative. I was struggling for ‘improvements’, then I realised the title was a bit lackluster. We were both stumped for ideas so I suggest he crowdsource some via the 10-minute challenge.

“What’s that he asks?” And the 10-minute challenge is revived. Hurrah!

We gathered at the beer fridge and shared our ideas on post-its, naturally. There was a broad spectrum and a range in the creativity, I’m not actually sure if he used any of them but that isn’t the main point.

The main points are, it’s Friday it’s 5pm, let’s step out of our day jobs for 10 minutes and use our brains in a different way. Lets come together chat about our ideas, share a beer (beer is optional) and maybe spark off some other conversations or ideas. Let’s just be work colleagues asking each other about our weekends.

PLUS let’s crowdsource ideas for any problem or opportunity we may have, from people that understand the business, user and tech context. For free!

I challenge you to take up the 10 minute challenge.

Faye Benfield, Head of Product, Comic Relief

Ps I wrote this article in 10 minutes, almost exactly. Challenge complete.

PPs *that’s not our actual beer fridge.

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