How to Avoid the Innovator’s Bias for the Solution
Originally published: 20/10/2017 12:27
Publication number: ELQ-92870-1
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How to Avoid the Innovator’s Bias for the Solution

Tips on avoiding bias as the creator of the solution.

Introduction

I’ve previously described the importance of uncovering problems worth solving early in your business modeling, but how do you avoid the innovator’s bias for the solution?


The recommended path for filling out a Lean Canvas is starting with the problem/customer segment quadrant but if you already carry a picture of a hammer in your head, the danger is framing all problems as nails. Today’s post is about avoiding this trap.

  • Step n°1 |

    Don’t build a better X, Build a better user of X

    The first step is a mind shift. Instead of brute forcing your solution (reframed as problems) on your customer segment, start by defining the bigger compelling context for your customers. People don’t buy a camera to get a camera. They buy it to take photos. So focus on the bigger compelling context (photography) and not on the tool (camera).



    Taking this a step further, the goal shouldn’t be building a better tool, but building better users. Kathy Sierra calls this making them badass which is a term she’s experimented with over the years. Other contenders were passionate, awesome, expert…She picked badass because the others were prone to easily being misunderstood for making customers feel better versus making them better. Being badass is not about your solution (or your brand), but what people do with it. It’s about the results.


    Side note: Kathy has a new book out by the same title that I highly suggest picking up if you haven’t already.


    So rather than immediately jumping to the unique features of your camera, think about how it helps people become better photographers. Before even getting to the problem box, write down “Helping people take better photos” under your Unique Value Proposition (UVP).


    Sure your UVP isn’t specific enough yet and still begs the question: What does “better” really mean? Uncovering the dimensions of creating “better” users is the key to solution differentiation that matters — not the other way around.


    Here’s how to jumpstart this process…

    How to Avoid the Innovator’s Bias for the Solution image

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