It's all about managing expectations
I placed an order online on a Friday and the store I was ordering from told me my product would deliver the following Wednesday. I would have preferred to receive the product sooner, but Wednesday it is.
On the next day, Saturday, FedEx sent me an email confirming the product would deliver on Wednesday. OK, fine, just what I expected!
On Sunday FedEx sent me an email saying "The product will now deliver on Monday." Well isn't that great news!
Monday came and went, and no delivery was made. Now I'm disappointed and a little annoyed.
On Tuesday, the product was delivered. And I'm disappointed, even though it came a day earlier than originally promised!
So what happened? FedEx did a poor job of managing my expectations. Had they never told me about the Monday delivery, I would have been elated by a Tuesday delivery (a day early!) but instead, I'm a little disappointed.
And this happens far too often in the world of technology. We're promised (or think we're promised) way more than is or can be delivered.
I always tell my clients that no system is perfect (and repeat this frequently). No matter how much money you throw at technology, you're still going to find weaknesses. But I'm trying to manage their expectations because expectations affect so much of how we perceive the success of a project or product or experience.
So be careful what you promise! And always manage expectations.
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