Lessons Learned from the Reverse Designing Pilot

Jun 18, 2024

Our journey of piloting reverse designing has been fun and educational. Initially, our focus on solving a concrete problem allowed us to engage with our target audience effectively. However, as we move further in the project we experienced downsides as well as benefits. Here are our main insights.

Understanding the “Why”

Our shift from an IT-centric to a business-centric approach proved instrumental. By prioritizing the business perspective, we engaged more effectively with decision-makers. This approach highlights the importance of clearly communicating the purpose and value of our product, not just its technical aspects. This accelerated development drastically. Fulfilling the promise was such a clear goal that it made us very effective.

Importance of Naming

The working title “Excel-killer” adequately conveyed our mission but lacked a positive tone. Renaming it to “Rulecube Forms” better aligned with our business-focused narrative. In a reverse designing project it is good to be aware that ‘internal’ working titles are not as internal as they tend to be in other projects. In future projects we would consider that more.

Comprehensive Communication

One recurring challenge was ensuring our audience understood the full scope of the Rulecube offering. The reverse engineering process gave us laser focus. But we also had to remind our selves to to tell the complete Rulecube story, including all the capabilities we already have within the platform. Not just the new stuff.

Customer expectations

As we polished Rulecube Forms, we recognized the ongoing need for improvement and anticipation of user feedback. This iterative process is vital for ensuring relevance. This leads to customer feedback in a much earlier stage of development but also to customer anticipation. This also results to a type of work stress that usually only occurs with live products. It’s important to manage this and to make sure it does not interfere with the creative thinking.

In conclusion, the reverse designing pilot underscored the significance of clear communication, appropriate naming, and comprehensive storytelling in product development. The million dollar question of course is ‘would we use this approach again?’ We will definitely take aspects of this process to enhance our current way of working, like defining the ‘why’ of the project before anything else. But with other aspects we would likely be a bit more reserved, just to balance the work load of the team. We did enjoy taking you along on our journey and it led to many fun and interesting conversations!

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