Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Extreme User Interviews

"The way to get good ideas, is to get lots of ideas and throw the bad ones away."
- Linus Pauling

Launching A New Idea
Over the course of my career I've come up with plenty of good ideas. At least I thought they were good ideas. A valuable lesson I learned along the way was to utilize a small group of bright people to review my ideas, offer their feedback, and then improve or reject my "good idea."

Experienced Users Know the Hacks
How does that get put into practice? It's not as difficult as you might think, but it does require a healthy dose of trust and humility. Both are challenges for me!

My process was straightforward, and based entirely on my experiences with other leaders in the organization. Those that I knew were engaged, big thinkers, knew our culture, and were well respected were put on a list.

Next step, I reached out to them individually and asked them to serve as my sounding board group. If they were uncomfortable, it was, of course, perfectly fine for them to decline.

None ever did...and I suspect the leaders you ask will also jump at the opportunity to contribute and help you.

And then...the humility piece. Once the group was assembled and I walked them through my idea, it was time for them to offer their gut reactions, their insights, their unique perspectives on what I thought I had completely worked out in advance.

On more than one occasion their feedback was humbling; but was always provided professionally. The best part was, it helped me make much better decisions than if I had relied on myself. 

How About You
Who do you rely on to help you work through new ideas or changes to your organization? Is the pressure to come up with everything on your own locked into you head? Let that go...and reach out to all of those bright minds around you.

I'd love to hear from you.

No Excuses.


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