Not only should you be a little childish and continue to ask users ‘Why?’. You should also be a little devilish, because your real objective is to seek out their inner most desires. What do they really want?
I have to admit I’ve been pulled in by the new Lucifer series. If you are not familiar, he is king satan but wants redemption, teams up with a cop – you’ve heard this one before. The key point – he can get people to tell him what they truly desire… yes it is perfectly formulaic. Cop on the outs teams up with outsider with a secret talents, whether in the future, or the past, or with writers or scientists. It is all the same. But it works. And when it works – it works, and you should use what works…
So as to not belabor the point, I will use my combo segue here with ‘using formulas that work’ and ‘devilish desires’
Start with desires
Don’t ask if the flow is right, or if the button makes sense. Not yet! Find out what problem they are truly trying to solve, and here’s the trick – Don’t reductively jump to your product as the solution. The solution may not be software at all. If it is task management, maybe the solution isn’t another beautiful and intuitive task management app. It might be a better delegation process, or even a person. Yes, people can still do real work too.
First find the problem, then decide if it’s a problem you are interested in solving.
What type of researcher do you want to be? A Soda Corp shadow foundation established to prove sugar is not bad for your health, or an objective disinterested party, who’s sole purpose in life is to seek the truth. This may be hard depending on management, which you will feel is forcing you in one camp or another, but this fundemental decision will necessarily dictate rhe outcome of your product. Will it be great, or less than.
The old tricks still work. It’s just human nature. Be candid, not corporate. Have a legitamit real conversation. Sure put yourself in their shoes – empathy – the whole deal But while you are in their shoes, don’t take that next step and assume you have all the answers you’ll ever need. Follow the process; get a couple things right; and then, start back at the top.
Because of course, the devil is in the design.