A bunch of cavemen are sitting around the fire one night, thinking about how they’re going to portion out the latest boar they’ve killed as it roasts on the spit.

An innovative caveman looks about the cave and spies a rock laying next to a pile of sharp bones left over from their last kill. He grabs the rock and exclaims in caveman-speak, “With this rock, I will beat on the boar meat until it separates into pieces of somewhat equal size, and we can all share.”

Of course the cavemen, never having considered or tried using the leftover bones as cutting implements, greet this innovation with much joy. They proceed with some marginal success, even refining the rock somewhat so that they do something more saw-like and less bash-like, never having considered using the bones as more efficient tools because this is The Way to separate portions of the kill.

Users often don’t know that there is a better way until it is presented to them. Consider if these cavemen were given other potential options for cutting their meat in addition to just the rock. In what way is refining a poor implement better than starting with a better idea?

Companies that strive to produce the best product for their users and retain command of their market do not accept feedback only from users who work solely within the parameters that have been defined for them. Extensive user testing involves asking questions like, “Can you think of another, better way of doing this?”

Maybe what you’ve got is the right way to go, but you should certainly be sure of that before release.