Design is a form of applied science. It’s a frame of mind and a mode of problem solving. A designer’s mindset is action-oriented towards creating a preferred future.
All elements of product design are founded on strategy:
The slightest shift in product strategy will result in a chain reaction of change to all layers above it. Usually the higher you go up the stack, the more change is required - sometimes a complete overhaul.
Foregoing foundational strategy work results in never-ending pivots. Never-ending organizational changes based on faulty strategy is the fastest way of wearing out team morale and inevitably leads to failure. Be serious about getting to the bottom of the problem you are solving and setting a solid strategy.
Strategy is set within market context. Continually monitor external opportunities and threats, be mindful of your team’s weaknesses and leverage your strengths.
Strategy involves engineering and business input. Product strategy is about maximizing the possibilities within business, engineering, and user constraints. Calculated organizational goals that are technically feasible need to be in place for what will be achieved through user adoption and product usage.
Design Thinking is a methodology that effectively incorporates experts of all disciplines to solve complex problems:
Scope is the most critical component of product implementation strategy. Everyone’s workload is based on it.
- Functional specifications are features that have been conceived to accomplish clear goals and have been reasonably tested and validated.
- Content requirements bridge the divide between product functionality and human usability through the communication of right ideas.
Scope creep will sink your project. Disciplined leadership entails knowing what the minimum amount of work is necessary to accomplish the next desired outcome and saying no to every other interesting idea. “The man who chases two rabbits, catches neither.” - Confucious