Article published on April 4th, 2017, by:

« SVPG works with lots of product teams. Many of these teams believe they are already doing Product Discovery. A few are doing it quite well, but unfortunately most are not. When this happens, it’s often because the team has the wrong understanding of either the intent or the techniques of Discovery. »

In this article, Chris Jones points out some of the most common anti-patterns on how Product Discovery is being misused by teams and provides some guidance on fixing it.

Anti-Pattern 1: Confirmation-Biased Discovery

Discovery is about finding an effective solution to a problem. Unfortunately, many teams set it up as a mechanism to simply validate their pre-existing ideas –they move from feature-to-feature using testing to inform what they’ve already decided. Confirmation-Biased Discovery puts your solution at the center of the process instead of the problem you’re trying to solve.

Anti-Pattern 2: Product-as-Prototype Discovery

This anti-pattern happens when teams have a narrow consideration of what constitutes a prototype. For these teams, a prototype is an early version of the product being built, often calling it the “MVP”. This roots the team in a solution-orientation because at this point everyone is heavily invested in the prototype. By the time they’ve built this prototype, it’s difficult to abandon and expensive to change.

Anti-Pattern 3: Partial-Team Discovery

Product innovation requires blending of functionality, design, and technology. This means Discovery requires active participation from product management, product design, and engineering (and often others). Many teams drive discovery with only one or two of these roles. One of the most common flavor is where engineering doesn’t play an active role in anything except technical feasibility –when engineers know what’s possible in ways that other roles often can’t.

Anti-Pattern 4: One-Dimensional Discovery

Some teams have a favorite go-to Discovery technique that they use often to the exclusion of all others. This application results in a Discovery process that addresses only a narrow set of product risks.

There are three common flavors of this:

  • (1) A/B Testing Driven

The problem with quantitative testing is that it doesn’t provide any of the qualitative insights that can explain why something is or isn’t working. Those types of insights are often much more valuable especially early in Discovery.

  • (2) Usability Testing Driven

In contrast to A/B testing, it’s a qualitative technique. But usability provides little insight about the value of the solution. It answers questions about whether people can use the solution, but nothing about whether they will use it (or buy it). 

  • (3) Survey Driven

Survey can provide insights, but by themselves are not an effective tool for innovation. They are tricky to word in a way that makes them truly open to understanding customer problems. For this reason they often devolve into the realm of asking customers what to build.

Anti-Pattern 5: Big-Bang Discovery

This type of Discovery happens when teams spend a long time planning and designing a very small number of experiments. Of course the level of Discovery may vary based on the maturity of a product, but generally Discovery is best treated as a continuous process. The best teams run some sort of test, usually qualitative user testing, every week. This keeps them open minded about their ideas because they haven’t had enough time to get attached to them.

Anti-Pattern 6: Outsourced Discovery

Many teams look to outside design agencies to do their Discovery. This can be helpful to jumpstart the process, but if teams always rely on outside sources, the customer knowledge that Discovery develops doesn’t accrue into the team. A similar problem happens when companies set up internal “Innovation Labs” which creates a handoff problem between the insights and implementation. It also sets the expectation that innovation happens only in specific parts of the product organization.

Discovery Done Right

Doing Discovery correctly is not easy, but it’s critical to finding solutions that genuinely work for your customers and for your business. Keep these important things in mind:

  • Discovery requires an open mind. You must approach it with an openness to kill or dramatically alter your ideas based on what you learn
  • Discovery tackles product risks. These risks go beyond simple usability or feasibility. They also include a product’s value and it’s ability to meet business needs.
  • Discovery is cross-functional. Good innovation requires active participation by product management, product design, and engineering.
  • Discovery requires judgement. You must test the things that matter, and test first the hypotheses that will cause you to fail.
  • Discovery prioritizes fast learning over everything else. The task is to gain insights into the team as quickly as possible.
  • Discovery uses many tools.  Make use of both qualitative and quantitative techniques, based on what needs to be learned.
  • Discovery is continuous practice. Discovery is best when it’s an ongoing process. Good teams are constantly learning by maintaining a weekly cadence of interacting with customers and users.

To access to the full article, please click here.

71 réponses
  1. gamefly
    gamefly dit :

    Simply want to say your article is as amazing. The clarity on your put up is just spectacular and i could think you’re
    knowledgeable in this subject. Fine together with your permission let me to snatch your feed to stay
    updated with impending post. Thanks 1,000,000 and please carry on the gratifying work.

    Répondre
  2. g
    g dit :

    Good post but I was wondering if you could write a
    litte more on this topic? I’d be very grateful if you could elaborate a little
    bit more. Bless you!

    Répondre
  3. minecraft for free
    minecraft for free dit :

    When I initially commented I clicked the « Notify me when new comments are added » checkbox and now each time a comment is added I get several
    emails with the same comment. Is there any way you can remove
    people from that service? Many thanks!

    Répondre
  4. gamefly free trial
    gamefly free trial dit :

    Hi are using WordPress for your site platform? I’m new to the blog world but
    I’m trying to get started and create my own. Do you need any html coding knowledge to make your own blog?
    Any help would be greatly appreciated!

    Répondre
  5. gamefly free trial
    gamefly free trial dit :

    Thank you for another excellent article. The place else could anybody get that kind of information in such
    a perfect approach of writing? I’ve a presentation next week, and I am on the search for
    such information.

    Répondre
  6. plenty of fish dating site
    plenty of fish dating site dit :

    I would like to thank you for the efforts you have put in penning
    this website. I’m hoping to check out the same high-grade blog posts by
    you in the future as well. In fact, your creative
    writing abilities has encouraged me to get my own, personal
    website now 😉

    Répondre
  7. natalielise
    natalielise dit :

    Hi there! Someone in my Facebook group shared this website
    with us so I came to look it over. I’m definitely loving the information. I’m book-marking and will be tweeting this to my followers!
    Exceptional blog and brilliant style and design. natalielise plenty
    of fish

    Répondre
  8. smore.com
    smore.com dit :

    Excellent post. I was checking continuously this blog
    and I am impressed! Very useful info particularly the last part 🙂 I care for such information a lot.
    I was looking for this particular information for a long time.
    Thank you and good luck. natalielise pof

    Répondre
  9. pof
    pof dit :

    Howdy just wanted to give you a quick heads up and let you know
    a few of the pictures aren’t loading properly.

    I’m not sure why but I think its a linking issue.
    I’ve tried it in two different browsers and both show the
    same results.

    Répondre
  10. plenty of fish https://natalielise.tumblr.com
    plenty of fish https://natalielise.tumblr.com dit :

    You actually make it seem so easy with your presentation but I in finding this topic to be really something which I think I would never understand.
    It sort of feels too complicated and extremely huge for me.
    I’m taking a look ahead to your next publish, I’ll attempt to get the hold of it!
    plenty of fish natalielise

    Répondre
  11. plenty of fish dating site
    plenty of fish dating site dit :

    hello there and thank you for your information – I’ve definitely picked up anything new from right here.

    I did however expertise several technical points using this site, as I experienced to reload the web
    site lots of times previous to I could get it to load properly.
    I had been wondering if your hosting is OK? Not that I am complaining, but slow loading instances times
    will sometimes affect your placement in google and can damage your
    high-quality score if ads and marketing with Adwords.
    Well I’m adding this RSS to my email and could look out for a lot
    more of your respective exciting content. Ensure that you update this again soon.

    Répondre
  12. plenty of fish dating site
    plenty of fish dating site dit :

    Hi there would you mind stating which blog platform you’re using?
    I’m going to start my own blog in the near future but I’m having a hard time deciding between BlogEngine/Wordpress/B2evolution and Drupal.
    The reason I ask is because your design and style seems different then most blogs and I’m looking for something
    completely unique. P.S Sorry for getting off-topic but I had to ask!

    Répondre
  13. quest bars cheap
    quest bars cheap dit :

    Undeniably believe that that you said. Your favourite reason appeared to be at the net the simplest factor
    to take into accout of. I say to you, I certainly get annoyed while people consider
    concerns that they just do not recognize about. You controlled to hit the
    nail upon the top as neatly as outlined out the whole thing without
    having side effect , people could take a signal.
    Will probably be again to get more. Thanks

    Répondre
  14. minecraft games
    minecraft games dit :

    Thanks for ones marvelous posting! I certainly enjoyed reading it, you’re a great author.
    I will make certain to bookmark your blog and definitely will come back later on. I want to encourage continue your great
    job, have a nice day!

    Répondre
  15. minecraft games
    minecraft games dit :

    After checking out a handful of the articles on your web site, I really appreciate your technique of writing a blog.
    I book-marked it to my bookmark webpage list and will
    be checking back soon. Please visit my website too and let me
    know how you feel.

    Répondre

Répondre

Se joindre à la discussion ?
Vous êtes libre de contribuer !

Laisser un commentaire

Votre adresse de messagerie ne sera pas publiée. Les champs obligatoires sont indiqués avec *

*