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Define Who, Why, What, and How: Roles, Goals, Scenarios, and Activities

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The product manager must have a concise vision for the product they can clearly articulate to the product designers. Put the customers and users activities in context of the market problem the solution is solving. Markets are made up of segments. We must be able to define our market segmentations in terms of their needs in context of the problems we are solving for them. Both demographic and psychographics help to develop segmentation profiles. Consider the strengths and weaknesses of the competitions’ solution compared to your solution along with how the various customers’ goals, process workflows, activities, and tasks are similar and different. Remember that innovation sometimes means looking at a solution in other markets and adapting it to our own.  The solution’s vision provides the direction for the product’s design.

The product team must follow the vision and not be afraid to ignore findings. Yes, listen to customers, but know when the findings support the vision. Vet assumptions, validate design concepts with customers, and evaluate the solution with customers’ end-users. Review market segmentation demographic data and interview stakeholders, customers, and users, in order to gain insight into their goals. A goal is a result one is attempting to achieve. Observe the customers and users using the solution in their environment and develop diagrams of the various customers’ workflows and note where the goals and underlining activities are similar and different.

Group your customer and user by similar roles based on their goals and the type of activities they perform. A role is a set of connected behaviors. Usually people with the same role have similar job-related responsibilities, duties, and goals.

Once the various roles and goals are understood, think through the scenarios needed to realize the goals. Scenarios describe a user’s interaction with the solution. Scenarios are useful to Product Management to define business cases and useful for Product Design to define user interface design.

Determine what activities are needed to complete the goals by roles. An activity is a specific behavior or grouping of tasks. Develop a diagram that illustrates the activities. An activity diagram is a diagram that shows activities and actions to describe workflows.

You can read more in this article – Defining and Designing Technology for People

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