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Storytelling in Design by Anna Dahlström

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Chapter 11 - Working with experience goals

Intro: The wrong or no prioritisation project

Many organisations, and projects, are led by the business needs and the list of users stories. The latter is not to be confused with user needs, or that just because it has the word ‘user’ in the title means that they are grounded in actual user needs. 

Writing user stories and similar is an easy thing in the sense that we can all write “As a user…”. It can however, become something that we almost churn out and because we’re constantly writing, and therefore also thinking “As a user…” we can fool ourselves into thinking that we’re automatically considering what a user might need. 

What a user needs often starts deeper than that. 

There is an old english proverb that says “The key to a man’s heart is through his stomach”. We have it in Swedish too (“Vägen till mannens hjärta går genom magen”), and it exists in many other languages as a way to say that to cook for man is a great way to win his affection. The power of stories and the power of experiences is that they connect with us emotionally around the things that resonates with us. Be it more fundamental needs like food, or our guilty pleasures and secret desires. To fully understand what users need, we need to identify what their desired outcomes are and what it is that they are trying to avoid. In chapter 4 we talked about the pleasure principle and how we seek to repeat and recreate that which gave us pleasure and avoid situations that ...

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