“Here’s what our product can do” and “Here’s what you can do with our product” sound similar, but they are completely different approaches.
— Jason Fried (@jasonfried) November 13, 2013
I really like the way Jason Fried stated the sentence. Prior to getting into design thinking and lean start-up, I was just another software developer creating features for a software product. I was coding features to a product, so someone would then sell the product or convince the final users to use it: the product was full of shiny features. Unfortunately many of these features were never used, at least as original thought of.
Lately I have changed. I got into design thinking and lean start-up. I even wrote an eBook about a recipe for getting into the MVP, the Minimum Viable Product to be used (a hypothesis) by a final user in order to accomplish goal. Just like Jason said, it might sound similar, but it is very different.
Nowadays, I am interested in the final user and her business goal. The product feature(s), or in better words, the minimum viable product feature(s) is focused on what the persona is attempting to do. So it is not about what the product can do for her. It is about what she can do with the MVP to better fulfill her needs or accomplish her business goal. As described on the eBook, the MVP is thought off in the perspective of the main users and their journeys to accomplish a business goal: features are just things (the simpler, the better) on the way to get there.