What should we spend most of the time on?

A common mistake in product design projects is spending too little time on research, both qualitative (interviews, user tests, ethnography...) and quantitative (monitoring of metrics, data driven design...). In my years of experience I see that it is common to confuse being agile with going fast, and it is common in many projects to prefer to expand the scope of the project instead of spending more time understanding the problem and the users. Why I think that the needfinding phase (understant, observe, analyze) is of critical importance? In consumer industries early phase design is increasingly important due to the costs of engineering. Moreover what I really want designing is usefulness. When designers are asked to solve problems that are already in a late phase, the design is prevented from being more useful or usable than it was to be with. This perpetuates the notion that design deals with superficial aesthetics ans styling.

August 2021



As a notepad, I am collecting here some ideas that express a little better my way of understanding product design.