Mechanical Drawing Board and CAD Techniques ©2010
Applying Drafting Skills
WebQuest Internet Project
Assessing the Client's Design Needs
When it comes to working with a client, excellent technical skills are not enough. In order to make the project a success, you need strong communication skills. That is because being a good listener and asking smart questions will help you better understand your client's needs. Only if you understand what your client needs can you meet his or her expectations and requirements for the project.
While some people might seem like innately good communicators, communication is actually a skill that can be practiced and improved. Though not a technical design skill, good communication is essential to dynamic career growth.
In this WebQuest, you will analyze how good communication happens, and how asking questions and listening will help you assess your client's needs. You will start by playing a quick game of 20 Questions with a computer simulation. While it might seem like the program can read your mind, it is actually employing a strategy used by many good communicators. Next, you will read about effective communications techniques and how a simple conversation can go awry. Finally, you will analyze a case study to determine how client needs were assessed throughout the development process of a new product design.
- Twenty Questions is a popular game played with questions and answers. You may have played it before at a party or to pass the time on a road trip. If you are unfamiliar with the game, read the rules provided. Then play the online simulation of 20 Questions at least twice.
- Were you able to stump the computer simulation? How do you think the game works? Review the articles on question techniques and types of questions. What types of questions did the computer simulation ask? What question techniques did it employ? Write a brief explanation of how the computer simulation works, based on what you have read.
- Next, choose a case study from the list provided. Read it closely, paying attention to how client needs were assessed. Was it a one time session or an ongoing process? Who was involved? Write a brief essay of 250-300 words analyzing the effectiveness of the assessment of client's needs, and how it impacted the development process. Finally, write a list of at least ten questions you would have asked, had you been tasked with the project.
Here is a list of Web resources necessary to complete this WebQuest:
Strong Communication Skills
Case Studies Evaluation
Twenty Questions Analysis
Explanation is inaccurate or inadequate
Student gives only a little explanation
Explanation is thorough
Explanation is thorough, and shows creative thinking
Case Study Analysis
Analysis is incomplete
Analysis is completed but relies on little evidence
Analysis is thorough and interesting
Analysis is complete, persuasive, and shows independent thinking
Case Study Sample Questions
Questions are incomplete or lacking
Questions are completed
Questions are completed and student has used a variety of the effective question techniques explained in this WebQuest
Questions are varied, rely on effective question techniques, and show an effort at independent problem solving
Most of the writing is not in complete sentences, and most capitalization a nd punctuation are not correct
Some of the writing is in complete sentences, and some capitalization a nd punctuation are correct
Most of the writing is in complete sentences, and most capitalization a nd punctuation are correct
All of the writing is in complete sentences, and proper capitalization a nd punctuation are used
Frequently, you will need to work with your client in the early stages of the project to understand his or her wants and hopes. Failure to do so can lead to misunderstandings, frustration, even and project failure. Over time, this can impact your career negatively. On the other hand, if your projects consistently meet or exceed your clients' needs and expectations, your career will benefit immensely. Keep practicing the listening and questioning techniques learned in this WebQuest. They are an important component of your career toolkit for success!