If I have learned one thing it is that there are many things that I haven’t learned. That is especially true when writing software. I am amazed at the things I learn on a daily basis. A new function or a new way   to manage my workflow. It is a constant battle to keep on top of the latest developments and make sure that the code I write and the methods I use are the accepted way to do things. But it is extremely  important to stay up to date. And that means listening.


I listen to those that I trust, and I listen to those that I don’t. I listen to everyone but I listen with a different mindset. If I hear something from a trusted source then I usually stop and evaluate what they've said and look at the suggestions made and see how I can apply them to my code to make it better. If I hear something from someone that is not a trusted source then I run it through a filter of what I have learned and what other trusted users have said on the subject and then if it is a good idea I apply it to my code. The key is to listen, and to listen with intelligence. Recognize that you don’t know everything and constantly push yourself to grow and change.



What does this mean for your code? Typically listening to others makes your code better. By listening to users you make your software more user-friendly and more likely to be adopted by new users. There is benefit to this type of “group mind”. If you are creating software for your audience it only makes sense to listen to what they think should be implemented. That will only increase your adoption rate. But that brings up the next key point.


Doesn't this make your code worse? Yes, it can. By blindly listening to every person’s opinion without discretion or careful thought (remember: filter) you run the risk or alienating your broader user-base for the desires of a single user. Don’t implement changes without that evaluation step. Don’t lose sight of your big picture. Why did you write your software? What are the problems you sought to answer when first starting out? Never sacrifice your vision for the desires of a few. Just because one customers wants you to use unicorns and kittens doesn't mean you should drop everything and start adding critters to your code.


Writing software and integrating user requests can be tricky. But listening to your users is not hard, and you never know when you will hear that suggestion that makes your code go viral. Remember - you don’t know it all.


When we set out to write CRMery we wanted to write a system that accomplished the needs of a CRM without all the headaches that other systems provide, we saw a problem and wrote a solution. Our overall goal is simplicity and robust functionality. But that doesn't mean we thought of everything. We get requests for updates and new features constantly. We do our best to listen to all feedback and then follow the steps above in filtering, evaluating, and implementing. And I hope that as you see what CRMery is and how we are constantly updating and adding new useful features you will find we are progressing every day towards accomplishing our goal and making your Customer Relations Management easier.

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