A really good article from Nature lays out why the bias towards additive solutions might be further compounded by the fact that subtractive solutions are also less likely to be appreciated.
In product development, friction points around refactoring and retiring features are widely popular in discussions among the engineers in any organisation. However, the bias towards additive solutions as found out in the article can be a strong root cause.
When business expects all the charts going top right corner, we may be relating this demand to additive solutions unconsciously. I have not seen any success stories at large mentioning why retiring features made their overall KPIs better.
After reading this article, I’ll try to challenge my bias towards additive solutions. It is going to be harder to come up with ideas subtracting by nature. However, in the grand schema of leaving a better legacy behind us and sustainability, I don’t see myself being challenged with counter arguments.
People tend to solve problems by adding features.