“I have two minds.” Quote from the book “Of Two Minds” by Carol Matas.
This is a phrase that can basically be applied to anything that involves decision-making.
When making a decision to buy or use a product, we all have two minds. We have a “buyer mind” when we want to get a product because we either have a problem, a need or a goal, and we believe this product will help us solve the problem, meet the need or reach the goal. But, we’ve got choices… and sometimes too many, so we would argue! Making a decision is always hard. We have to consider other products that can also meet our goals. Which one is a better product? What features does this product have that the others don’t? What features do these other products have that this one doesn't? What’s the cost difference between this product and the others? Sometimes we even take account other people’s opinions and recommendations on the matter. Considering all this narrows down our choices and helps us make a good decision.
Sometimes we wonder why some people would purchase an expensive product, but someone we trust recommends it, so we buy it, and after using it, we then understand why it was so highly recommended. The product is great to use and we realize now that the benefits it brings are of great value to us.
This is when our other mind, our “user mind” comes into action. It engages when we start using the product and when we start answering the questions we had when we were making the decision to buy it. “Is my problem solved or at least closer to being solved?” “Is it meeting my needs?” “Is it helping me reach my goal or does it feel like I'm making progress towards it?” And when the answer to all these questions is a big YES, we not only feel competent, but we also feel capable and effective.
Our “buyer mind” considers different things than our “user mind”. A “buyer mind” looks at our problems, needs and goals, considers the features and prices, and makes what looks like the best decision for us. Our “user mind” often chooses the best value, it’s the one responsible in using the product every day and the one that knows for sure whether our goals were met or not.
In our business of designing and developing drilling software, we are very aware that our customers are two-minded people and sometimes the buying mind and using mind have two different bodies. For example, the executives of a certain company make the decision to buy our software based on the perceived benefits to their company; however they won’t personally use our software and the actual users may not have been involved in making the purchasing decision, but they both have one interest in common: to make usage of the software to achieve the goal.
That’s why our main goal at PVI is to satisfy the strategic goals of the buyer and meet the immediate needs of the users. When we talk about designing and development processes, we always consider “buyer mind” and “user mind”. We want our customers to accomplish what they bought the software to accomplish.
We've been talking about buyer mind, and user mind, but there are more minds than that to consider when we’re interested in a product. Think of these minds as a set of goals or concerns at play at the time you're considering the software. When you learn about it and consider all its great factors you will focus more on the enjoyment you’ll get from that interesting experience.