Have you ever wondered how to break a thing apart… into its elements in order to understand it?
For instance: you have a beneficial idea that would potentially deliver a benefit to a customer; now you want to explore it. What are the Features that would be needed to deliver that benefit?
You start by gathering together a set of people whom you think can help ‘Feature Storm’ this benefit. Have them ponder about it and post — use sticky notes — as many Features as possible to the wall. No judgement zone. A collection of Features — representing a ‘pool of meaning’ — from the participants will result.
As you can imagine, more participants will yield more perspectives which in turn yield a potentially higher set of Features that could lead to a better understanding.
Do affinity grouping — put similar things together — on the Features.
Once you are done with the ‘Feature storming’ exercise, you have arrived at the birth of clarity.
You may now proceed synthesizing — connecting the dots, putting things together — the collection of Features to come up with a beneficial product that is, hopefully, desirable to the customer, viable to survive the marketplace, feasible to develop, and sustainable for the company to maintain and improve over a span of time.