At the accessibility group I and my colleagues were grinding down our workload until one of our bosses walked in and announced we will be visited by a man called Neale, who was arriving to introduce his product “Ourboards”. It’s always fun to have some variation in your work day so it seemed quite exciting.
When Neale arrived, he was carrying a large canvas sized bag, with the contents being examples of his Ourboards. Neale explained how some people from the disabled community can struggle with memory, stress, and priorities. How to the people that struggle with day to day life, don’t have to panic over what task to do first, or getting confused over what needs to be done by when.
Neale told us stories about how people who hard a hard time with organisation and focus, have been given Ourboards and had an immediate and positive change to their daily lives. Where before there was just chaos and nothing to guide them from point to point, to having their days neatly planned out with no surprises.
So it was pretty exciting to see what these Ourboards looked like. Neale went through them in order, explaining each variation of Ourboard as he went. There was a fair variety but all with the purpose of structuring your day and having things planned out.
The average board had some variation of a “To do” list, with a “To do”, “Working on” and “Finished” columns that users could use “Gecko” stickers to write on tasks and to move them between the columns to track progress.
There was even a ’Worry‘ board where there were three bubbles labelled as “What I can control”, “What I can’t control” and “What can I prepare for”. By using the previously mentioned stickers, people can designate certain things of their lives to one of these categories, helping identifying what can be done and what is just beyond their control. This offers a great relief to users by simply acknowledging some things are out of our control and what’s worth worrying about is what we can control.
After being shown all of these boards, we were encouraged to ask Neale questions about the ourboards and to provide feedback, which was quite hard because the boards themselves accomplish already what they set out to do. The only solid feedback that could have been supplied was for a few more variations of the board and for some varied gecko stickers so that tasks could be color or shape coded.
Ourboards are suitable for a wide range of work/educational environments, with a lot of benefits to even households. Where children can benefit from having their days mapped out to them and to encourage developing routines and work discipline. After Neale left we excitedly picked out the boards that we liked and our office ordered for them to arrive the following week.
All in all, Ourboards are an excellent tool for all those who are in need of that structure in their lives, and it’s wonderful to see people already benefit from just having these boards in their homes, schools and workplaces.
I myself have an Ourboard propped on my desk and as I type this, I’m looking at the note “Finish Ourboards Blog” thinking about how satisfying it will be when I get to move the note to the “Finished” columb. What a truly amazing and simple product.