Inspired: How To Create Products Customers Love
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Read between January 01 - June 03, 2016
54%
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I try hard to get the product manager to focus each release on a single primary persona.
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The spec must describe the full user experience—not just the product requirements but also the user interaction and visual design. By now, hopefully everyone recognizes how closely intertwined the requirements are with the user experience design.
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The spec must accurately represent the behavior of the software—and we need to acknowledge that words and pretty pictures are just too limited in their ability to describe this behavior.
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There are several critical consumers of the spec—engineering, QA, customer service, marketing, site operations, sales, and executives. As such, the spec needs to communicate the behavior of the product in a way that all these groups get what they need. The spec will change—the rate of change should slow down dramatically once engineering gets started, but there will be decisions and issues that arise, and the spec should change to reflect the very latest decisions. There are a number of artifacts in the creation of a spec, such as lists of prioritized requirem...
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If more than five minutes goes by without the user starting in on the prototype you are talking too much.
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After your greeting, be sure to tell him or her that (1) this is just a prototype—it’s a very early product idea—and it’s not real, (2) they won’t be hurting your feelings by giving you their honest opinion—good or bad, and (3) you’re testing the prototype—you’re not testing him or her. Your test subject can’t pass or fail—only the prototype can pass or fail.
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When testing, you’ll want to do everything you can to keep your users in “use mode” and out of “critique mode.” What matters is whether users can easily do the tasks they need to do, and whether they value the product. It really doesn’t matter if the user...
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Some people ask users to keep a running narration of what they’re thinking, but I find this tends to put people in critique mode, as it’s not a natural behavior.
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Act like a parrot. This helps in many ways. First, it helps avoid leading. If your test subject is quiet and you can’t stand it any longer, tell them what they’re doing: “I see that you’re looking at the list on the right.” This will prompt them to tell you what they’re trying to do, looking for, whatever. If your subject asks a question, rather than giving a leading answer you can play back the question to them, “Will clicking on this make a new entry?” The subject will usually take it from there because they’ll want to answer your question: “Yeah, I think it will.” Parroting also helps avoid ...more
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when you do fight, make sure you’re fighting for your product and not against another person.
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Remember that every version of your product will have to be built, maintained, tested, released, documented, and supported.