The best description for short-sightedness? I’ll go for the saying “missing the forest for the trees.”
The same applies to our work life: look at a problem for a long time, and you may miss potentially more significant issues.
We can see an example of this in software development, where long-term contributors can gradually develop a blind spot for issues.
It can also happen to us during the ideation phase: if we have similar profiles of people working on the concept, we risk polluting the idea pool with the same set of ideas. Similar thinking will, in turn, fixate the products’ future development to a path that may not suit the base customer needs long term.
The same problems may also occur in later stages of a product lifecycle – did you ever hear the sentence: “That’s the way we’ve always done things around here”?
The inability to change your viewpoint can be detrimental to the newly formed digital product. There are a plethora of different scenarios, visible in larger companies, like for examples:
- colleagues from technical departments not being exposed to products end-users feedback and focusing on non-essential features,
- sales team not being involved in the product teams work and therefore lacking a clear overview of available features;
- the marketing department not understanding the technical complexities of proposed solutions.
When you don’t include all the necessary stakeholders, you increase the risk of missing out on some critical detail. In some cases, this may cause a snowball effect, leading up to minor errors, severe delays, or, worst-case scenario, even product cancellation.