Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Problems and Requirements

As usual, Pragmatic Marketing's Steve Johnson hits the nail on the head with some observations about product requirements. Here is but one excerpt:
"One more point about market facts: we're not interested in what features customers say they want as much as an articulation of problems they have. Customers will ask for more of the same while continuing to struggle with problems. Great product managers observe the problems and report them to development... in the form of requirements."
You have to ask, "Why?" to go beyond what customers say they want and to understand what problems to solve for them.

1 comment :

Scott Sehlhorst said...

Looks like we have convergence again in our thinking post about never forgetting to ask why

When I worked as a design engineer, we applied QFD to the design process to convert customer needs into technical requirements. I spent many hours working on "house of quality" diagrams to visualize the relationships. Provides a great framework for translating from "why" to "how".