Why Circular Conversational Design is Best with Alison Greenberg, CEO at aflow

Inside VOICE


Was reading online. That you have a pretty impressive background you went to Yell. And you studied anthropology you played in the Symphony Orchestra there. And then you did some work in the arts for Awhile and now you work in voice technology and there's been a lot of people that have come from the creative space so I'd love for you to talk about briefly your journey into how and why you got into voice technology years ago. Yeah absolutely well. One of my favorite things about this industry is how cross-disciplinary it is. There's really not one background of people who under boys and I don't think many different in that respect but I will say that really from the time I could talk. Language wasn't just the way I express myself it's Mike Currency and so music is something that I was always drawn to. I played music in high school and College. I still to this day. I studied anthropology because of how central language was to it as a social science. I didn't study English or history. I studied a social science because I loved looking at language as a tool and as a currency especially in ultra contacts and in the voice industry but actually with my company of flow we started with chat bots. Language is very much currency of conversational user. Interfaces or curious as we call them and so you know voice and chat go hand in hand they are. Interbay says that requires specificity precision and entertaining use of language but the design principles across voice and chat. Can you really different? And so- entering Voice Technology. You know it's kind of a misnomer. I didn't enter voice technology. I entered chat and that was because when we started flow. Mico Gandara South Miller was actually the driving force behind beginning not company and he was noticing automation taking he was noticing the role of AI in businesses in communications and he started to build the baht of an NBA all star name Russell Westbrook at the time of Oklahoma City Thunder and that was our first bought and then we started to build from there realizing that we scale communications we could even skill personas and brand identities into these conversational experience and so while we believed that automation and I were powering communication. We also believe that is really immature. I don't know if you hear this often but do people ever talk to you about kind of how I is lacking yes. That's definitely something that comes up and I know especially when it came out a couple years ago and consumers used it. There was kind of frustration and so I feel like there's now this like element of education and awareness of like. No it's growing and and we're working on it and getting people to understand that totally. Yeah I mean in technology. You hear a lot about the hype cycle rate. So we might be in that trough of disillusionment which is a piece of language. I just love it's kind of various the trump disillusionment makes sense. Alexa is a teenager. You know came out. In two thousand four chat bots really the dawn of chat bots was in the mid twenty tonnes. We are looking at technologies. That are not just immature in some time. They're immature in the sense of the amount of work that has to go into making them seem less so this industry needs our help. Our words and our design for it to actually work. It's not intelligent yet right so if a is a teenager you know. Teenagers can crash your car. Teenagers can make a lot of mistakes and do a lot of damage especially on the part of brands but teenagers can also change the world so just look at Greta. Van Ver look at the kinds of young people who are driving social change today. That's the approach that we take to chat and voice it'll flow and match. Why we built the concept of conversational design is because we believe that we have to work together with these systems and with the power moderation and conversation design is actually the most important part of Charlton boys today. If these systems are designed well technology to incredible but it's not going to work welter these her. Yeah which brings me to. You made a comment in another interview. You did how you talked about. Hamas boys conversations are linear and what you do out of flow as you really work on creating a circular conversational design. Can you describe the different? So people understand it and why it's important to what you do at a flow hersher. Yeah so out of what we developed. Circular Conversation Design as our attempts to fix these broken visual and verbal designs. Keeps the industry has kind of had to back dialogue into the tools that we have to build it. And so I think really voice and charter just like any industry were almost only as good as our tools and so what we do to kind of choose actualized or conversation design. We talk about a traffic circle. Have you ever been a England or actually you live in New Jersey? I was GonNa say we definitely have traffic circles in New Jersey? So yes perfect. Yes so we'll have talking to people who've been to New Jersey because you're intimately familiar with the roundabout traffic circle. You know you have to get on a certain point and then you make turtles people who aren't from UK or New Jersey. These very confusing carry. I've learned But the cool thing about around about or traffic circle as you can get on off any talk and so if you miss your exit you just keep going in the circle. You have another opportunity to make that exit once you exit you can drive through the backup but you always have an opportunity to get back on. And that's how human conversations work the tools of the trade up until now have kind of destroyed the potential conversations. I in my opinion because we've mainly used the decision tree right. So that's linear design thinking conversations as linear. But that's not how we speak. You know I could talk to you right now about projects for doing it a flow. We can pivot to women and boys. I could ask you what it's like to live in New Jersey. That's how communication works. There's so many circles within circles. There's so many overlaps in and crossed actions and so we had a great experience actually Boy Summit last summer we were really lucky to be part of Amazon's conversation design workshop. One got to take some great echo. Show fives and They disqualified anyone who designed using a decision tree. And so that kind of shows you the way that the industry has been. I know a lot of designer still used decision trees. And it's because it's how away to understand the computer logic but we don't conversational napster and we think of them as a set of nodes that are all linked to one another wherever and whenever possible in a circular fashion and just like that traffics. Are you have to be able to get on and get off at any point? In time we should be able to return to the part of the flow to the extent that the platform we build allows us to do so we should be able to return to order the flow midway through at via

Coming up next