When tasked with building something from scratch, how do you create a proposal and vision that's grounded as well as future-proof?
I faced this question when creating Coda’s Publishing Platform: Doc Gallery, a marketplace to publish website-like docs and ideas with the world. Given that this was a completely new product, it was not possible to gather data from a previous product or get user feedback on any existing services. In absence of the usual tools, I knew I had to create a long-term vision that was rooted in realistic, near-term outcomes, as well as build a foundation that’s future-proof. Most importantly, I had to get the team aligned excited about this vision.
What I learned is that you have to become the expert in a domain and set up your company for long-term success. It’s counter-intuitive to be an expert in something that doesn’t exist, or that can’t be measured in traditional ways.
This session will explore how to build conviction and become the expert by:
- Observing and understanding the market to inform your intuition: from competitive analysis, to reading blogs, or scanning twitter.
- Learning whenーand whyーto question the status quo and design something that’s“right” even if it goes against the familiar, existing patterns.
- Painting all edges of the pictureーusing existing collateral and updating it with your vision can help team members understand where you’re going, even if you won’t build all features right away
- Finally, creating a North Star that’s not too detached from reality. How do you ground your vision back to meet your team where they are today?
When done well, your product is built to last and the domino effect can help your company grow.