Professor Noriaki Kano (1984 Tokyo Rika University) developed a method to analyze which product attribute/feature, service or process is more desirable than others. Product attributes influence customer satisfaction in different ways. This is an established method to retain existing customers and to acquire new ones.


When do I use this method?

Use this method if you have a large number of requirements from many different stakeholders. With the KANO method you have hard data, based on a survey, why one feature is prioritized higher than others.


How do I use this method?

Create a survey consisting of 15-20 features. For each feature, ask how respondents would feel if the feature were available (functional), but also how they would feel if the feature were missing (dysfunctional).


Respondents must answer each part with one of five replies:

1)    Like

2)    Expect

3)    Neutral

4)    Live with

5)    Dislike

Every combination of functional and dysfunctional answer results in a classification of each requirement (Attractive, Must-be, One-dimensional, Reverse, Indifferent, Questionable). See the image below:



The next step is to determine the coefficient of satisfaction and dissatisfaction and make a chart with the following 4 quadrants:

1)    Basic needs

2)    Performance needs

3)    Delighters

4)    Neutral


Now you can see which feature is a “Basic need” and must be implemented. “Performance needs” and “Delighters” could be your feature for marketing. “Neutral” is uninteresting for the user and you have to carefully consider if the feature is really needed.

What are the benefits?

You will get a better understanding of customer requirements and how they influence customer satisfaction. You can identify trends earlier. Preparation and follow-up are time-consuming but the result is convincing.

Duration: More than 1 day

Number of people: 5 or more

Level of expertise: Expert


Author: Noriaki Kano

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