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Using Personas to Build What Customers Need (not what they asked for)

In this episode, Rebecca Kalogeris, VP of marketing for Pragmatic Institute, hosts Sandy Orlando, the senior VP of product management at CDK Global, an automotive retailing software company. Sandy explains that her objective with NIHITO visits is to listen to the customer rather than to talk to the customer, and to test a hypothesis without trying to inform it. She said that while building personas people try to prescribe a conclusion and then prove it rather than exploring.

When done well, personas can lead a product team to create solutions that lead customers to desired outcomes. At times, she said she’s received feedback from customers that she didn’t deliver one single thing the customer asked for but instead delivered exactly what they needed.

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