Develop for the user. That’s a very important topic for every design challenge in today’s environments. But who is your user? What do they think? What do they need? Does the product fit the user’s requirements? How can you check if your product or idea meets the user’s expectations?
Look at your idea from the user’s position and try to understand their requirements. In other words, you need to define personas who will use or will get in contact with your product or idea in different ways. This will help you to leave your personal perspective as this is very often a much focused one. You as the thinker and designer, you already like your idea. But it is very interesting to know what would someone else think about it and how can you prepare your product for it.
What is a persona?
A persona is an imagined person you create as part of your design process. You need to specify some key facts about the person you like to create. The personality, interests, and some believes. You should also draw a picture of the person. All this data will be collected on a persona template. After all you will have some kind of a good understanding about the character and the personas perspective.
How to create personas?
First you should collect users and roles of people who will be in contact with the product or idea. This list will give you an overview about how many people needs to be recognised. A good number would be to create round about 4. Next step will be the development of the person on your template. Describe the personas interests and requirements. You can follow the list below:
- Name of the person
- Role or customer segment:
- Who am I:
- My personality
- My interests:
- My Skills:
- My Dreams:
- Relationship to Technology
- Reasons why the person uses your product
- My Expectations
Do it for every person you have on your list. Your imagination and creativity is required now. You will see by developing the people and their interests you will create new perspectives and thoughts about your idea.
How to use them?
Another important point does not create the ideal user. This will not help. Instead create people who are in a more critical or opposing positions. This is important if you want to further develop your idea. If you have completed this step. You will test them against your idea. Take your idea and think about what the person thinks about it. Create a short list of questions you will ask during the test.
What are the personas thoughts about your idea, will they get a benefit? Identify possible conflicts or problems. Where will be a weak point? What needs to be considered at the product development? How can you avoid these conflicts? Does it work at all?
Finally, you will get a huge amount of impressions and thoughts about your product or idea. Identified weaknesses, benefits or problem cases and how to improve and develop your idea. Now you can work on further developments and you can reduce the risk of failing.