Useful first. Usable and delightful later.
Some students usually asked, "If we keep prioritizing speed, when can we polish the design and make the interaction delightful?"
This year, I held 4 cohorts in Crafters. Many passionate people joined to learn how to validate their product ideas. During the discussion, the students usually asked me, “All these validation techniques are great. But if we keep prioritizing speed, when can we polish the design and make the interaction delightful?”
The students who asked this question were understandably frustrated because their team kept cutting the design, and they ended up with an “ugly” product.
I can finally articulate my thinking with this simple answer:
Our goal is to make the product useful first, then usable and delightful later.
Let me explain.
Make your product useful. What I mean is to solve critical problems so people want to use and pay for our product. Why? Because no matter how great the interaction design in your product is, people won’t adopt it if they don’t find it useful.
At this point, it doesn’t mean that you ignore usability. Instead, you want to prioritize the “useful” part, and you should sacrifice the "usable" and "delightful" part. In other words, you must sacrifice some ideal interaction to move fast. It's all about prioritization. You may ask then, how much of the interaction should we sacrifice?
Each product category has a different baseline for its usability. For example, if we’re building a chat app today, users will expect they can send an emoji