Process

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The End of Feature Requests

Have you ever been on the end of a long string of feature requests, either from users or management? These feature requests are usually very specific in how you are supposed to implement it. So much so that you, as a UX Designer or Product Owner, you sometimes feel like a tool. Well, there is a very simple way to change that. All it is going to take is for you to ask one simple question, and that question is: “What are you trying to achieve?”

“What makes this question so special?”, you may ask. Let me explain. This question does three things.

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“Be the change you want to see in the world” ~ Not Gandhi

Deep Diving into “Why?”

After “What are you trying to achieve?“, my second-favourite and most used question, is “Why?”

Anyone who has ever engaged the inquisitive mind of a four-year old has had the experience of answering the dreaded follow-up question of ‘but why?’. While this line of questioning has lead to many frustrated adults, this line of thinking has inspired the problem-solving approach employed by some of the top companies and leaders in the world.

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Are you doing Mini-Waterfall?

Are you really doing Agile?  If you are not doing iteration on your work, then are you getting the benefits of doing Agile?

The idea behind Agile was to be more flexible to users and market changes. Waterfall takes years to develop a piece of software and by the time you hit the market, you are no longer relevant. With Agile, you can build a MVP and iterate on your product as you try and find the right market fit. If you are only adding new features during sprints, without iteration, then you have just broken Waterfall down into smaller pieces. This is what I like to call “Mini-Waterfall”.

What is your company doing?

Links & References

  1. Agile process
  2. Waterfall process

The Purpose behind your UX

Every company does their UX a bit differently. It all depends on resources available, are you a start-up or large company and the influence of your existing business-developer processes.

I worked for an ecommerce company and work were usually handed down from the top, in the form of “We need to redesign application X” or “We want a new application X”. My first response is always: “But why?”. Why do you need to redesign? Why do you want to build a new product? What is wrong with the current product?

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