engio wrote:Awesome responses yo, print-out material.
Thanks. We all deal with this stuff everyday. I'm sure there are other ways, and probably better ways, of encouraging our coworkers to pursue more innovative solutions. These are just a few mechanisms I've developed over the years that have worked in varying degrees at time. You wins some, you loose some. I try to keep my eye on a net gain while giving a few here and there.
engio wrote:Personal experience bias When a person with influence decides that some particular problem is not worth solving, because s/he never experienced it personally. That any attempt at solving it will add cost and no value.
This is a huge culprit at every turn, for everyone in the process. We were in a meeting reviewing a few detail options when someone said "I like it better this way"... this person was very far from the user we were addressing, so my response was "I didn't realize you were a 14 year old girl! That is fantastic to have you on the team... right, you are not a 14 year old girl so how you personally prefer it, while interesting, is not the input we need. We need to do our best to understand how she prefers it."
As designers we get caught in this all of the time. It can be hard to separate our personal, needs, preferences, taste, and bias, from those of the user we are trying to address. When in that situation, which is more often than not (as a designer, our tastes tend not to be main stream) I try my best to develop something that fits the user, but is still something I am personally proud of. The search for the highest possible common denominator vs the lowest.
engio wrote: Analyzing fatigue: when people have done so much user studies but failed to analyze the data that they don't see the forest for all the trees. Instead of seeing the opportunities, they shoot it down with "no users said they wanted that particular feature". Paying no mind that it doesn't exist so they have had no chance of even trying it.
Where I work we call this analysis paralysis. The old Henry Ford quote works well here "If I asked my customers what they wanted they would have said a faster horse." The purpose of research in our process is not to take a direct quote from someone and turn it into a product, or focus test out so many unique features that you are left with mediocrity. The purpose of research is to fuel the product development process. To inspire insights, to figure out what needs are through synthesis. The key is always in the synthesis of a wide array of inputs.
While I'm rambling, this reminds me that the smallest portion of the process of bringing good design to market is the actual doing good design part. The vast majority of it is the dance, convincing the brass to do something out of the companies traditional strike zone, working with engineering and manufacturing to transition the glimmer of a thought, into and idea, into a concept, into a prototype, into a manufacturable product.
One of the amazing tools in this dance happens to be a beautiful sketch. Over the past 15 years I've seen a hot sketch come into a room and silence an argument many times. People want to be excited about what they are a part of. A hot sketch, used appropriately to make a good idea come to life, can go a very long way.