If you’ve read my posts on reducing scope and incremental product development, you may have concluded that I’m conservative about the impact of product changes. But I’m not. On the contrary, I advocate for high-impact product changes. When you punch, you should punch hard.
But how can minimally scoped, incremental product changes have high impact? Please allow me to explain.
Embracing scope reduction and incremental development leads you to simplify your goal and pursue the shortest path to achieve that goal. It doesn’t mean that you should pursue low-impact projects.
In fact, if the impact of a project is small, it can be difficult — and time-consuming — to determine whether or not you’ve achieved your goal.
All work is hypothesis testing, and a key part of optimizing for the speed of learning is that it should be quick and easy to determine to confirm or reject your hypotheses. Indeed, one of the worst possible outcomes of an experiment is that you make a change so small that the results are statistically inconclusive. A clear failure is far more useful.
So don’t pull your punches. Give your experiments a chance to unambiguously succeed or fail. You’ll probably see more failures, but you’ll learn more quickly and increase your overall productivity.