Projects from huge to small are all want to be Agile. Every team would like to put the user in the center of their product development. Of course, all of us are building products for users. We want to attract them and make sure they won’t leave or become disappointed.
And here come user stories. These are the necessary tools allowing us to keep our users in mind. Moreover, these stories amazingly give us an understanding of the features set you need.
There are hundreds of works talking about user stories writing: articles, books, other publications. But most of them are providing approaches and tips rather than giving an understanding of how to avoid some errors product managers can make while crafting them.
When writing a user story, any team member tries to think from the user’s perspective. But unfortunately, we all make huge mistakes since we rely on our experience and knowledge. Of course, IT people are smart and skillful, and we know more than a general user – and our skills are leading us to these six mistakes.
Six mistakes any product manager makes when writing a user story.
- Too broad user stories
You are crafting broad user stories; some information or action can get missed out. How to determine a broad user story? Here is a tip! If you have a lot of “ands” and “ors” in a user story, it is most probably too broad. Try to re-write it and make sure it’s not also “epic.”
2. It’s too fine to be real.
You have too fine user stories; it’s not good as well. You and your team are starting the implementation of this story; as a result, you re-focus from your user to the product. As a result, poor communication with the team, unreal expectations, or any other factor may lead to failure.
You have a requirement based on a user story, and your team finds it really hard to implement. If you stick to your current scenario, your team will definitely spend a lot of time implementing it.
You may overcome this issue by allowing your team to negotiate and finding compromise instead of spending a lot of time on the false implementation.
4. Recapping user story in acceptance criteria
Criteria allow describing conditions that are needed to be met for the story to mark it as completed one. It ensures that you gather feedback, helps to plan the teamwork, and track it. Moreover, it allows making the story precise, rich, and testable.
5. Undefined user issue.
Of course, it sounds silly, but a lot of projects are created without defined user personas. As a result, most of them are useless. Every project might have dozens or even thousands of different personas for whom you are developing. Keep in mind that every feature you implement should be created for end-users since they are the key to your success.
6. Not a meaningful user-story.
User stories are poor. They are not giving any value to your project. As a result, there is a set of similar stories telling to build a product or a feature that is not needed in the case. You should leave such user stories behind and come back to them later. Maybe, you will be able to change the context making them more apparent to other team members by adding new context.
User stories are a significant part of any product development. Without them, you cannot build a product that will work. It’s never simple to write a meaningful and useful user story, and you cannot rely on templates from online resources. Nevertheless, you can keep in mind these mistakes and avoid a mess with user-story writing.
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