Yes, YES a thousand times YES! Definitely read the whole post.
We are afraid we won’t ultimately succeed. What if we never hit our numbers? What if nobody wants our product? What if our management choices lead to mediocrity?
In the face of so much uncertainty, the natural human tendency is to DO MORE. Our focused, beautiful product needs MORE FEATURES to make everyone happy. If the system is down, throw everything you’ve got at it! If we’re not sure our business plan will work, let’s broaden our potential customer base and cater to the needs of everyone!
Decisions like these are always made out of fear. They are a slow, quiet panic.
We make these decisions every day, on both a small and large scale. They lead to broken products that feed complex, fear-driven organizations, which then demand broken complex fear-driven products. It’s an infinite and vicious cycle of mediocrity.
This is and has always been the problem with business software. Creators of products continually ask “what if?” until their panicky questions lead to panicky answers. What comes out in the end are inhuman, complex, endlessly configurable products with no soul, no opinion and no character.
Customers then continually feed the beast by asking “what if?”. “If we spend a bunch of money on this, it better be perfect! How is it going to match OUR processes?”. They back vendors into a corner from which the only way out is to implement every feature ever requested.
Customers provide pressure, and weak, scared product developers give in to it.