Making Meaning

Making Meaning by Steven Diller, Nathan Shedroff, and Darrel Rhea gives valuable insights on what people value and look for in products. The book’s target audience is mainly business people, however, designers can easily relate to the arguments and presentation of information throughout the book. Two quick observations from the book, cover is unbearably bad designed, and there’s a lot of buzz word that you feel a bit overwhelmed. However, I love the section on 15 meanings that they discovered based on their research. here’s an excerpt:

What types of meaningful experiences do people value? In the course of helping companies develop products and services that suit their markets, every year we interview over 100,000 individuals from countries and cultures around the world. In these interviews, we’ve found commonalities among the meanings people feel strongly about, whether we’re studying the adoption of new software in Poland or the purchase of toothbrushes in Florida.

So what are these 15 meaningful experiences? Here’s the long list:
1. Accomplishment,


3. Community,

4. Creation,

5. Duty,

6. Enlightenment,

7. Freedom,

8. Harmony,

9. Justice,

10. Oneness,

11. Redemption,

12. Security,

13. Truth,

14. Validation,

15. Wonder.

And another excerpt on how the authors talk about one of these meaningful experiences

Community: A sense of unity with others around us and a general connection with other human beings. Religious communities, unions, fraternities, clubs, and sewing circles are all expressions of a desire for belonging. The promise and delivery of community underlies the offerings of several successful organizations including NASCAR with its centralizing focus on car racing and leagues of loyal fans that follow the race circuit, Harley-Davidson motorcycles and their Harley Owners Group (HOG), and Jimmy Buffet with his dedicated Parrotheads. These businesses attract and support user communities who embody specific values tied to their products and services

To learn more, read the book, or check their website.

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