Most often, specific feature requests are one person’s guess about the best solution to an unstated problem. And many problems are just symptoms of deeper issues. We need to drill down to identify the underlying cause.
There’s a simple method to achieve this — it’s so simple that every child from 3 to 6 years old masters it. In adulthood, it takes the name of the 5 Whys technique. This technique is known to work wonders for fail post-mortems, but it can be just as powerful to get to the bottom of feature requests. We start with the request and then take the time to ask “Why?”, not just once but multiple times, to peel back the layers until we discover the root problem.