Learning from your users

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  • We need to ask ourselves and find out: who are our users and what assumptions do we make about them and their behaviour (during/in certain situations; when they talk about our product etc.)
  • Challenge your assumptions through testing. When you introduce new features that were requested by users, test and check how they are being used
  • One is very likely to miss out on key findings, when the data on users is only looked at superficially without a detailed analysis. If sceptical or time-challenged colleagues need to be convinced how useful a deep dive can be, try to share key findings by telling a story about a user and how learning about their journey made a difference for your product.
  • Tracking only tells you what happened, but not why and what the user's motivations were, so you need to engage with and talk to them. 5 people is the minimum amount to get statistically relevant information.
  • Usability testing requires prompts to allow the interviewees to step into the shoes of the respective user they are simulating. Recommendation for semi-structured interviews (open-ended, non-leading questions).
  • Design is a way of seeing things and putting this into practice and more people should get the encouragement to learn about this and apply this lens.
  • Guerilla research: go out, offer people a coffee and ask whether you can show them some tech for 10min and ask some questions about it. Or use gatherings/conventions to get people testing spontaneously.
  • Which factors are important for users to trust a product and feel safe? (So-called trust indicators)

Recommendations to learn more:

Methods to learn more about your users:

  • future news headlines
  • rapid prototyping
  • 5 Whys?
  • Simulations
  • Stakeholder Analysis and Mapping
  • Dream 8s (also known as "crazy" 8s, but this wording is to be avoided)