How to build a system to avoid over-complication in your product

Google UX Designer David Hogue shares his thoughts on How to Reverse Over-Complication in Product Design and How to Avoid It Altogether. It’s a very good read for product managers. Here he describes how do build a process to avoid over-complication:

Critically evaluate every new and existing feature for the value it provides weighed against the costs of including in a product or service. Does a feature introduce friction or ambiguity? Does adding something more make flows, paths, and choices harder to understand? What are the potential positive AND negative outcomes of adding something, and is it worth it?

Constant vigilance against entropy, scope creep, and the accumulation of friction is necessary. Pausing for review after major releases, conducting retrospectives after updates or changes, critical analysis of product performance before and after a change, and ongoing quantitative and qualitative research can all provide information about and indicators of increasing and unintended complication.