Problem Statement

This exercise encourages participants to formulate their problem into a concise statement focused on the needs of their users.

Introduction

By formulating a problem statement from the perspective of the user, the Product Manager shall be getting into the head of the people they're trying to assist by building their digital product. A problem statement is a one line statement that recasts the idea in human terms of what the technology allows your user to accomplish.

These should be in the form:

As a...

I would like a way to...

So I can...

This can be explained as:

THE USER would like a way to DO SOMETHING (THAT ADDRESSES THEIR NEED) so that SOMETHING HAPPENS (THAT BENEFITS THEM).

Giving the Product Managers an example will help them understand the format of the problem statement. It should always be written from the perspective of the user. The example we give is:

As a teenager who struggles to connect with others, Iā€™d like a way to learn social cues so I can find friends and build relationships with my peers.

This example was written for a product addressing the needs of teenagers with Autism Spectrum Conditions - this is not identified in the problem statement since a user would not refer to themselves in these terms.

Required Materials

Paper and pen

Workflow

  1. The Product Managers should be presented with the structure of a problem statement.

  2. Give an example of a problem statement to the Product Managers.

  3. Ask the Product Managers to formulate their own problem statements.

  4. After giving enough time to formulate these ask participants to read them back to the group and allow other Product Managers to offer advice on each problem statement.