Opinions vs. Evidence

Sometimes people get confused between opinions and evidence. 

Opinions → internal people, very smart people, but still inside the building thinking this is what customers want. Newsflash…customers don’t know what they want, so how do we know what they want?

Often people confuse and conflate opinions from experts inside the building with evidence, and it’s not evidence.

So what is evidence?…

Can you build it?

I had an interesting conversation with a very good “agilist” the other day, and we were talking about when you need to experiment. 

There’s a lovely prioritization canvas from Jeff Gothelf, and I believe, Joshua Seiden that’s in the Lean UX book, third edition. 

What is really nice about the prioritization canvas is they look at work items in two dimensions:

So you look at what’s the potential value from this work; and 
Then you look at what’s the risk in terms of us getting that value. In other words, how do we rate our ability to harvest the value? 

The idea is if it’s low value, why are you doing it anyway or even talking about the bottom half of the 2 by 2 matrix? 

At the top half, if you have loads of evidence that people want this and customers and end users are crying out for it, there’s loads of data….

Just build it. 

When should you experiment?

If we don’t have much evidence, we need to run some experiments. 

Thank you.

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