Grand Perspective

Use this exercise to get an overview of the products you’ll service with your Design System and who will use it. It also helps clarify which existing guidelines, processes, agreements and handbooks are relevant for your Design System. Do this excercise as part of your take-off or during a Design System retro-spective.

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What do you need


+/- 30 minutes


3-10 people

  • Square sticky notes
  • Small voting dots
  • Markers
  • Whiteboard, flip-over or Magic Chart
  • Time Timer
  • A Decider

This exercise is part of the Design System Take Off by Angi Studio

Step by step

1. Write down your products

Write down existing (digital) products, websites, apps and (digital) services and other ‘things’ your company creates. All on separate sticky notes.

2. Stick ‘em on the wall

Have everybody stick their sticky notes on the wall in a horizontal line. Sticky notes that describe the exact same thing can be stuck on top of each other.

3. Keep the most important products

Give everybody 2 voting-dots and let them vote on the most important products. Afterwards, have your Decider select the top 3-5 products. Focus on the impact a Design System will have on these products.

4. Roles

Take 4 minutes and have your participants individually write down the roles involved for the products you just selected.

When time is up: one by one, let everybody read out loud the roles they wrote down. The facilitator writes down these roles underneath the product sticky note.

5. Vote

Give everybody 3 voting-dots. After, the Decider will select 3-5 important roles that are relevant to the Design System.

6. Guidelines and other helpers

Explain this thoroughly!

Using sticky notes, every participant writes down existing guidelines, handbooks, workflows, definitions-of-done and other helpers.

Examples: “code reviews”, “design reviews”, “definition of ready”, “WCAG 2.0”, “the brandstyleguide”, “Sketch Library”. Think about processes and implicit knowledge also.

7. Last votes

Give everybody 3 voting dots. After voting, the Decider will select the ‘helpers’ that are relevant to the Design System. There’s no limit on what you’ll pick.

8. Keep, discard, incorporate or point to?

For the helpers you selected, discuss if they will be replaced by the Design System. 

Or maybe you’ll keep them and just link to it? Or maybe it will be a ‘downloadable’ in the Design System? Or… The sky is the limit!

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