April 9

On the Other Side of Interview Barricades

Back in the day, I was a tester for a board game (a physical one) that my friend had been creating. After a few sessions, I noticed how I complain about issues with the game. I noticed that I express my feeling not offering solutions, but problem statements. Like "I feel the lack of a social component in the game" instead of "You should add the option of players working together against somebody." The reason is that I do not want the mentioned option. I wanted "a social component" to see in the game. And being honest with myself, I would better see an unexpected solution than one offered by me. In that case, it would be much more interesting to discover. In comparison with my ideas that I'm not even sure I would love anyway. Moreover, I just understood that the developer has many more competences than me and can address the issue in a better, more creative way.

The point is that I was on the other side of interview barricades—as an interviewee. And I had started to understand in a better way why people with problem statements istead of solutions/features offering are much valuable for product teams to listen to. Of course, as an interviewee, I can complain about the lack of functionality and features in a product, but usually, it's because a product team has missed must-have features, and it has nothing in common with what I'm talking about here.