In the recent Cape storms I discovered a feature on Facebook: the app was aware of the storm and offered me the option to log that I was safe. Not only that, I was given the option to offer help to other FB users. Food, shelter, volunteer help, any number of things to those in need literally a click away. Wow! Whose brilliant idea was this? It was the answer to all of us who desperately want to support, but don’t know how. And evidence of an organisation in touch with what their customers find valuable.
We know a little about how things work at Facebook thanks to a talk Kent Beck did at Agile Africa. Anyone is free to propose a new feature or enhancement. We may be tempted to argue that this is possible only because FB employees are also FB users. But allowing developers to design a product was a shift even for FB. I am not sure what that shift is in your environment, but unless we get into consumers’ heads and hearts we might be building the wrong thing really well. What a waste!
How does your team, including product designers, currently assess how happy end users are? How would you measure the impact of changes to the product? Do you have to build everything in order to get any feedback? How long is the feedback loop?
What would be possible if you have easy access to real information about the value of your product? What can you do to bring that about?