When it works

In product development we talk a lot about overcoming challenges and improving processes. It is not easy to turn ideas into working products that add value to users and achieve business objectives. Tonight I’m thinking about a successful project where I was fortunate enough to work with an exceptionally talented product team and what happens when it works.

The customer problem is clearly articulated and the solution is flexible

The team had identified a niche where a new product could be launched. A number of potential customers had been involved in research to help them identify the problem. They knew the space they wanted to explore, but had not rigidly defined the solution or how it would be achieved. We had clear goals and a chance to create something different.

Room for experts to shine

This team knew their strengths and weaknesses. They had great experience in some areas, but wanted specialists to collaborate with in others. They were open and willing to hand over the reigns for chunks of the project to those with relevant skills. It made best use of resources and gave a feeling of ownership to all.

Experiments are time limited

We had a limited time frame to create the first prototype and ambitious deadlines throughout, to keep us focused. The attitude was do as much as we can, make it as good as possible, collect plenty of feedback, then stop and review. If at any point it wasn’t working for customers, the plan could change.

Keep the conversation going

As prototypes were developed and customers were engaged, the team kept a stream of communication with everyone involved in the project and the wider business. It allowed people to see the progress and secure further resources when needed. To see the launch happen was a great moment for everyone!

And when it works, it really feels great.