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What will this tool help me do?

Impact at scale is only possible when your solution, scale strategy and model is validated through real-world testing.

To achieve this, you should start by identifying and planning for potential flaws in the assumptions underlying your solution, strategy and/or model. We use the word assumption to describe any aspects of your solution, strategy, and/or model that are unknown and untested.

This tool will help you design tests to learn more about your assumptions and to collect data. This is so that you can refine your solution, strategy, and/or model based on real-world learnings.


To work on the tool worksheet, follow these steps:

  • Make a copy to your own Google Drive folder: Click file > Make a copy > Entire presentation > Select your personal drive folder, OR
  • Download a copy to your desktop: Click file > Download > Microsoft Word (or other file type)

Step 1

Start by re-visiting your priority assumptions for the identify assumptions tool and downloading the testing risky assumptions template. Select the assumption that is your top priority (i.e., you are most uncertain about it and it has the highest risk for your strategy and/or model, and/or solution)


Step 2

Identify and expand on your test objectives. Think about what you hope to achieve and/or learn more about.

Beyond answering the question posed with the risky assumption, you will need to expand on the objectives or goals you hope to achieve through testing to help you make progress and turn the test results into action.


For example: is your objective to build confidence in the quality of your solution? Is it to compare your solution to alternative solutions to understand feasibility? Is it to provide enough information to your key stakeholders to make a decision?

Step 3

Select a type of test to use based on what you are trying to achieve. There are many different types of tests from focus groups with your target users to get more feedback around your solution, market testing to understand the need in a location, to evaluation to understand the impact of your solution.

Testing your assumptions as quickly as possible and building the agility to create feedback loops will accelerate your pace of learning and reduce waste of time and money.


A specific type of test, lean experiments, can help you do this. In the next phase of toolkit development, we will release tools for how to design lean experiments but in the meantime, visit our lean innovation support page to learn more.

Step 4

Identify who will participate in your test and what are the actions you want your participant to take.


Step 5

Develop your metrics for success. You should have an idea of what success looks like before completing the test so that you can critically evaluate whether impact is being achieved.


Step 6

Create an action plan for when you will test and the resources required and define the qualitative and quantitative data you are aiming to capture.


Step 7

Be prepared to update your strategy, solution, and/or model where relevant based on the data and learnings from your test.



“Our team was challenged with a lack of information – we had reservations in pushing forward with what we’ve already done but also sensed the real immediate need for our services in the community.”

Read the case study to find out how Jewish Vocational Service (JVS) used the Lean Innovation testing and approach to take risks, rapidly learn, and act nimbly.

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