[MEL22]

Epic Leadership Challenge [DRAFT]

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Silver 

Project Overview

Holly Ransom is a globally renowned interviewer, author, board director and founder of the Epic Challenge. Just some of her achievements include; Named one of Australia’s 100 Most Influential Women by the Australian Financial Review; delivering a Peace Charter to the Dalai Lama; and interviewing both the Obamas separately.

In 2022 Holly launched the Epic Leadership Challenge (Epic), where she guides participants through her methodology of leadership popularised in her book ‘The Leading Edge’. Holly wanted to deliver an innovative experience different from any other online course. Her goal was to challenge and strengthen participants’ leadership skills, within a fun, motivational, and interactive community. Strategies from her leadership experience are embedded within the course to build accountability and positive daily habits.

Customers access the Epic Challenge through a ‘Progressive Web App’ (PWA), which has revolutionised how online leadership development courses are delivered.

Project Commissioner

Emergent

Project Creator

Blitzm Design

Team

Jenna Farrell - Creative Director and UI Designer
Ben McKeown - Digital Design Director

Project Brief

In 2021, the initial pilot of Epic was launched using an enterprise SaaS gamification platform to test the concept in a way that was cost-effective and accessible while still delivering an excellent experience for early adopters. Once the idea was validated, Holly approached Blitzm Design to bring the leadership challenge to life through a custom digital experience.

Outside the Epic Challenge experience, an online eCommerce store was required. Paying customers are automatically signed up to the Epic Challenge after they go through a short and efficient shopping experience. They can also purchase team passes for multiple people, and purchase passes as a gift.

Project Innovation/Need

Leadership and professional development courses have followed the same format for years. Attendees are often required to set aside half a day (sometimes up to several days), to attend lectures and workshops. The time required to attend leadership courses can present challenges for busy executives, and once a course is completed and daily habits resume it can be challenging to apply the lessons learned.

Even with the industry required to adopt digital delivery due to covid, there hasn't been true innovation beyond delivering the same content but via video conference instead. Content delivery is often one way, and avenues for participant engagement are limited.

The Epic Challenge takes a completely new approach to deliver leadership content in a way that is both scalable and able to be tailored to different audiences. Holly breaks up her leadership methodology into many bite-sized pieces that participants access in daily 15-minute blocks over the course of a month. This approach means that people are able to apply what they've learned immediately while building new positive daily leadership habits.

The course is also designed to foster an engaging community, where participants are encouraged to take an active role – rather than simply receive content like traditional courses. Badges are awarded for achievement, and communication among participants is encouraged and facilitated through a community feed.

Design Challenge

During the pilot program, Holly and the team decided that customising within the platform was too restrictive, and building something fully custom through the API wouldn’t deliver enough benefits over an original build. Therefore, Blitzm recommended building a PWA with WordPress. It can be downloaded to users’ mobiles like an app, without the upfront investment of a native application. This approach gave Holly creative control and allowed her to focus on the design and user experience.

Blitzm's deep experience with WordPress meant the team was able to push the platform to the edges of its capability. The Epic Challenge PWA delivers most of the desired functionality so well that its performance far surpasses the initial goal of concept exploration and validation via MVP, and as such, Blitzm is continuing to optimise and build out greater functionality for the Epic Challenge moving forward.

Analytics integration provides excellent visibility over visitor acquisition, conversion, and user interactions/engagement. Blitzm built custom reports to instantly generate reports based on defined parameters, enabling the client to track performance and target users with tailored communications.

Holly and the Epic team have used data from the first challenge to improve the experience for the second challenge and will continue to push the boundaries of leadership professional development.

Epic Challenge is a highly customised and adaptable solution. Once set up, the courses are ‘plug and play’, and Holly is able to create as many courses as she needs.

User Experience

The Epic Challenge was launched to 665 users, with over 6,000 interactions by day 4. The leadership course is delivered through a unique gamified experience, featuring: community feeds; leaderboards; badges; teams; and announcements. Multi-media uploads are supported for both admin and participants (text, video, images).

At the end of the first 28-day challenge, there had been an amazing amount of engagement with the users. This included 1,884 badges earned, 83,312 applauds given, 7,606 daily challenges completed and 840,871 points awarded.

90% of participants say that "the epic challenge has improved my knowledge as a leader”, and 88% say that "the epic challenge has helped me build new, beneficial habits.”

Anyone can join an Epic Leadership Challenge, people who are thinking of joining can register their interest via the Epic Challenge website https://epicchallenge.co/, and they will be notified when the next challenge becomes available.




This award celebrates innovation and creativity in design of a unique user experience in the combination of text, audio, still images, animation, video, and interactivity content for websites. Consideration given to clarity of communication and the matching information style to audience.

 

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