I have read a whole deal about Design Principles, where the guiding factors of design for a particular product or brand are outlined.
However, I have seen far fewer “discourses” on Build Principles. So I thought it was about time I created a post about the process and principles we have followed at tydy.
1. DO NOT BUILD WHAT YOU THINK IS COOL
During the initial days, when Nikhil and I were thinking up ideas, we often feel into a trap where we would keep building a product that we thought was cool. A product we felt everyone should definitely use. However, we never asked a group of users!
So nowadays, every single product feature and update is based on user feedback! We no longer believe we know best!
2. BUILD WHAT EVER FREES UP TIME FOR THE USER
This philosophy is critical to the reason why we have users, and why we have users who are delighted with the product. Any feature or update that helps users focus on their core competence (and be creative) is something that passes through our filter and gets into the product road map.
3. INTEGRATE PRODUCTS THAT USERS MIGHT BE ALREADY BE USING
This is another principle we have been following rather diligently. It’s important to minimize the friction involved in starting to use a new product. Integrating products the user is already familiar with and uses on a daily basis always helps this process.
At tydy, we have integrated email quite intimately. We are also in the process of integrating products such as Google Drive and Dropbox. I believe this is an important element in most new products today!
4. DESIGN HAS TO BE INTEGRATED INTO THE BUILD PROCESS
Now, this principle can go in two drastically opposing ways: you can either think its rather elementary OR you can think this does not make sense at all.
However, at tydy, we believe that design is critical in the coding of the product. A new feature or update starts only when we know what it might look like. This means, we must know what it most probably look like - yes, there are going to be design changes and tweaks once the build is done, however, the magnitude of change will be rather small (at least in most cases :) )
5. NEVER THROW OUT WHAT YOU HAVE ALREADY BUILT
There have been countless occasions where we have re-cycled or re-used something we had built in the past and taken out later in the product. For example, the calendar view in the product was something that existed in the past, was taken out in that avatar, re-cycled and re-jigged into an alternate view to the Tydy Planner.
So as you can see, we are very environmentally-friendly and believe in the power of re-cycling!
So there you have it… those are some of the main guiding principles we use at tydy. We have never before made a conscious attempt at putting these principles into words, but I feel this are principles that most startups can implement in their process as well.
Let us know what your Build Principles are… We love exchanging notes :)
This post was written by Kiran Menon, CEO & Co-Founder of Tydy.