Nothing will bias a session faster than you trying to sell him on your ideas. You’re not there to talk. You are there to listen.
Nobody in the world can possibly tell you whether some abstract concept you just explained will solve a problem that they have. Even if they could somehow understand the wild abstractions you’re presenting them with, they couldn’t honestly tell you whether they would pay money for your solution.
They hear “listen to your customer” and think that we want them to blindly accept every ridiculous feature request made by somebody with a credit card and an opinion.
The point was, whatever changes we made, we had an objective way of determining whether or not the design was a success.
You see, if you’re designing something interactive, you need to design it to be…well…interactive.
One of the most common problems, and possibly the toughest one to overcome, is the tendency to accept solutions from users without understanding the underlying problem.
If you trust your engineering team to make some interaction design decisions, then you can present them with lower fidelity mocks and work through things like corner cases with them as they build.
I’ll just mention that, if you’re working with an outside agency of any sort, it is almost certainly spending time making its deliverables attractive. I
It may not be immediately clear how that relates to UX, but in my experience, Agile, iterative, efficient teams create better user experiences every time.
Design is not art. If you think that there’s some ideal design that is completely divorced from the effect it’s having on your company’s bottom line, then you’re an artist, not a designer. Design has a purpose and a goal, and those things can be measured.
The best alternative is the cross-functional team.This can be a tough change for people who are used to working in their own little silos, but combining people into one product team lets you go much faster.
The reason this works is that everybody is working on the same thing at the same time, which means that there are no handoffs where information gets garbled or lost.