Finding the right balance between market/customer feedback and your own vision for the future is tough. Very tough. There’s no shortage of input from different constituents like customers, prospects, team members, investors, partners, and analysts. When starting out, balancing input is even more important because it’s so difficult to get people to talk with you — it’s tempting to take everything to heart from the first couple discussions.
The risk is that the feedback group is too small of a sample size and doesn’t represent the market. Real customer usage is oxygen for a product, but early on it’s especially hard to achieve much since the product is so early in it’s development. Finding the right balance of input while focusing on what you believe is directionally correct, while having an open mind, is so important.
When you receive your next piece of product feedback, ask yourself where it fits in with your vision, and whether or not it increases or decreases your market focus.
What else? What are some other thoughts on balancing product input with focus?