It's the most important principle we could imagine as we looked into the future and back to the past and how we got here. Learning. Invest in your own learning and the learning of those around you. As you learn, also share. A shared and collective understanding means people will be more clear about what it is that you offer and what makes you unique. And if we are always in learning mode, the world is a better place.
You cannot mastermind quality. But you can develop what quality means to you and your team and project over time. Some things are nobrainers; like the best development tools, the best design tools, the best transaction cloud service, the best payment api, the best marketing approach, the list goes on and on. However, the overall quality of a product relies on a trustworthy relationship with early adopters and users as well.
The key to our own success as a team, that we freely pass forward within our client engagements, is that we collectively develop a deep understanding of the customer, their needs, apprehensions, and values. How are we helping them? How can we enable them? How can we empower them? By developing an awareness beyond the stats and data, we believe each project deserves the respect of undivided attention and deep empathy.
If you don't want to read the rest of this paragraph, then just know this one thing: We refine your early ideas and validate them with customers. Each cycle, the team and customer relationship grows, and the quality of the product seems to increase almost overnight. The best way to design and develop fast is to do them together. We apply this principle to ourselves and our own design and development processes.
Your customers. Our customers. Their customers. You name the scenario and we will define who they are and where and how we need to connect with them. By developing a tight loop and network with your customers, you stand to learn earlier about their perceptions and the probability of certain approaches in your marketing and product development. And, never assume you are the customer, even when you are.
Not every product challenge is a silky transference of work into immediate success. Many times there can be a deep period of what we call in the industry, a block, or "suckage". It's when things aren't working and the breakthrough and solution is still just a mirage. What we have learned is that teams that struggle and tame their challenges together can and typically will also end up winning together.