🚀 What is Product Discovery? 

Product Discovery is the process of understanding which problems to solve for users and identifying the best solutions, usually features in a product.

It involves researching, testing, and validating ideas before investing time and resources in product development and features.

If we work on a problem that doesn’t matter to the user or provide an incorrect solution, we are wasting time and money.

In practice, this means:

Talking to users. Conduct interviews, surveys, and direct observation to understand their needs.Testing concepts. Create prototypes and show early versions of the product to get feedback.Analyzing data. Use metrics and analysis to make informed decisions.


Do you want to see a Product Discovery workshop I did for a client?

🔍 Why should organizations and teams do Product Discovery?

Product Discovery helps reduce costly errors. By learning earlier and more cheaply what the user really needs, you will develop better products.

These are the main benefits:

Saving time and money. By identifying and validating user needs from the start, you avoid developing unnecessary features that later need to be discarded.

Risk reduction. Having a clear understanding of the problems to solve reduces the likelihood of product failure in the market.

Better team alignment. All team members understand the priorities and work towards a common goal. To achieve this, you should:

Discover as soon as possible, and in the cheapest way, whether the features are necessary to avoid unnecessary costs.

Launch products that truly solve problems and, therefore, have better reception.

Motivate the team by seeing that their work has a real and positive impact.

❌ Why do many teams do it wrong?

Many organizations make mistakes in Product Discovery because:

They skip the research. They go straight to development without understanding the user, based on assumptions.

They develop what stakeholders ask for, believing they represent the users and know what they really need.

They don’t test their ideas. They develop features believing they are relevant and correct without validating if users will appreciate them.


This happens in practice due to common reasons like:

They don’t know what Product Discovery is, so they assume the process is based on implementing intermediate user requirements.

Taking specific users as representatives of all others. There are usually different user profiles, and ignoring some of these neglects their needs.

Believing it is faster to validate features with real code. This is a big mistake, as UX research techniques are usually much faster and cheaper.

✅ How to do Product Discovery right?

To succeed in Product Discovery, follow these steps:

Research before investing in developing the features. Talk to your users. Understand their problems and needs. Use interviews, surveys, and data analysis.

Generate and test ideas. Use prototypes and user tests to validate hypotheses. Don’t settle for assumptions; seek real evidence.

Collaborate with all roles. Involve representatives from design, development, or marketing. The diversity of perspectives generates more realistic and robust solutions.

Iterate constantly. Product Discovery is an ongoing process, not a one-time task at the beginning of development. Evaluate results during Sprints and constantly improve your ideas.


In practice, this means:

Conducting frequent user interviews, e.g., during each Sprint, to constantly understand and validate their needs.

Creating quick prototypes and showing them to users, obtaining early and frequent feedback.

Sharing information about users, problems, and solutions among all roles, e.g., in product boards and refinement sessions.

🧪 The importance of validation with evidence

Product Discovery helps filter out wrong problems and solutions. But it does not guarantee success.

Validating whether decisions were correct or not with “real product and real user” data allows you to invest only in the right features or efficiently switch to others.

How can you validate product discovery? For example:

Conducting user tests. Quickly prototype and test with real users. Observe how they interact with your solution and adjust based on their feedback.

Analyzing metrics. Use data to measure the impact of your solutions. Are users using the new feature? Is it solving the problem as expected?

Conducting controlled experiments. Implement small changes and measure the results before a large-scale rollout.


In practice, this translates to following principles like:

Implementing incremental changes. Instead of big launches, make small, measurable adjustments.

Continuously collecting and analyzing data. Use analytics tools to understand user behavior.

Reflecting and adjusting. After each experiment, reflect on what you’ve learned and adjust your approach accordingly.

🔁 How to perform Product Discovery in Scrum?

Product Discovery can be perfectly performed in Scrum. It involves:

Understanding that the Product and Sprint Backlogs do not only have validated and correct features.

Some of their elements (PBIs) can be problems to solve or features that need validation.

Understanding that Product and Sprint Goals can have risks and need discovery and validation activities.

Many of these activities can be done as part of Strategic Refinement or Tactical Refinement


If we think about Sprints, this means performing two parallel workflows during Sprints:

Discovery: Identifying problems and features.

Delivery: Delivering ready-to-deploy or deployed features.


In the article How to integrate UX and Scrum – Dual Track Scrum? I explain it in more detail.



🧑‍🏫 Learn with the Scrum.org Product Discovery and Validation course

To help Scrum Teams efficiently discover and validate products, Scrum.org has created the Product Discovery & Validation Skills course.

In this 8-hour course, you will learn:

How to discover earlier what the customer really needs.How to validate customer needs cheaply.How to design, conduct, and evaluate experiments.How to integrate discovery and validation into Sprints.How to better manage product development risk. 


👉 On July 8th, I will conduct a Professional Product Discovery and Validation (PPDV) online course (in Spanish).



💡 Reflection and action

Performing Product Discovery is not just a process but a mindset of discovering as quickly and cheaply as possible what the user needs.

Skipping product discovery and validation to go straight to feature development usually results in significant time and money waste.

Product discovery and validation can be integrated into Scrum at the level of Product and Sprint Goals, Backlogs, and integrating discovery and delivery activities (Dual Track) in Sprints.

Start discovering and validating your product today in three steps!

Think: Do you know the use of your product features? If they are not used, is it because they are unnecessary or poorly implemented?Review your work process: Do you discover and validate features, or do you go straight to implementation?Think: What first step from this article could you implement to better discover your products?

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