The Common Uncommonly

All About Loyalty

Meet Agnes


AGNES: All the aches and pains, none of the wrinkles. Where do I sign up?


Talk about walking a mile in someone else’s shoes.

The bright folks at MIT’s AgeLab have developed an outfit that can transform anyone into a 70-year-old.  Except, presumably, an 80-year-old.  Meet AGNES: the Age Gain Now Empathy System.  Put it on, and you experience the aches, stiffness, and limited mobility that many seniors live with every day.

For an engineer, a product designer, an architect, or anyone else who makes decisions that impact how other people interface with the world, it must be an eye-opening experience to put this suit on.  After all, too often we design things with ourselves in mind rather than the end user.

Of course, AGNES represents a very literal approach to understanding a specific demographic, because it’s focused only on physical attributes.  When we’re dealing with brands, there’s physical, cognitive, and emotional elements to consider.

But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try.  The more you get to know your customer, and the more you understand how they approach your brand and products (and the world in general), the more effective you can be in designing new products.

Think about your customers, your prospects, your employees… how would you tailor an AGNES suit?

Written by Tom Logue

August 15th, 2011 at 8:08 am

4 Responses to 'Meet Agnes'

Subscribe to comments with RSS or TrackBack to 'Meet Agnes'.

  1. Many of the top executives I’ve worked with over the years literally never speak to an actual customer. Their reaction to Focus Group comments is often total astonishment.

    If I could tell them one thing that would help them more than all the Focus Groups in the world, it would be to put on that AGNES suit — or just dress casually — and go hang out wherever their customers do.

    Jackie Nerren

    15 Aug 11 at 11:00 am

  2. Amen! It can be quite a wake-up call. That’s one of the things I love about this job… introducing my clients to their customers.

    Tom Logue

    15 Aug 11 at 7:50 pm

  3. Can you tell Jackie that I got all excited when I saw her name?

    And can I create a suit based specifically on a (former-to-me) co-worker that we know and love?


    16 Aug 11 at 3:40 pm

  4. I will pass your message along.
    And some suits are just too uncomfortable to wear. Trust me.

    Tom Logue

    16 Aug 11 at 5:14 pm

Leave a Reply