Jan 27, 2021 • 24M

[LISTEN] 079. Competing Designs, Better Design

“Ugh, competing teams are the worst.” — my own thought bubble, 2003

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Appears in this episode

Steven Sinofsky
Personal stories and lessons from inside the rise and fall of the PC revolution as narrated by the author.

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A common belief in big companies with resources to spare is that innovation works better when there is a competition between multiple efforts with the same goal. It is a luxury most companies don’t have. If you’ve lived through competing designs, then you also know this is a horrible way to innovate and it is odd that such a process persists. When we began work on the redesign of Office, we wanted to iterate over designs quickly while also making sure we had multiple perspectives. It was not competing designs per se, but it had many of the same tensions. It was only through careful management that we ended up with a better design because we had multiple efforts early on.