Woman and technology … part 2

 

When things go wrong with technology (like that never happens!), men and woman react differently.  When a piece of technology isn’t working as expected, guys will not give in.   Its an ego thing … the technology will not win.  They will fiddle with it, they will download a patch, they will check forums.  For men, there is a certain level of satisfaction that comes from conquering the challenge of “making” it work.

The first time it doesn’t work, they are surprised.  The second time, they are annoyed.  The third time, its out.  Move it to the garage, put in the trash or take it back to the store.  They’re done with it.  Their motivation comes from the benefit the technology brings, not the technology itself.

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Innovators who get this difference will jump on the idea of focusing their target customer to be woman.  Why?   Woman have a higher adoption bar, requiring that your team focus on ease of use and delivering true benefit that the customer values.

The other benefit, from this focus for technology companies, is that it forces the team to think beyond themselves.  Most R&D teams in technology companies are male dominated, given the mix of men and woman in engineering schools.  As a result, R&D teams typically fall into the trap of designing for themselves since they are missing the counter opinion on their teams.  With a focus on woman, it forces these team to get out of their cubes and engage their target customer.

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The result is better products for all of us.

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