User scenarios are magical,
but they start with a lot of legwork.

There's little in this world that makes me happier than a well crafted user scenario. A good scenario gets everyone on the same page, happy with the experience we're planning on creating for our users.
As long as the persona we're writing for is accurate, and we know as much as we can about their needs and goals, scenarios outline one pathway toward meeting one or more of those goals in a way that—for now at least—ignores all the technical hurdles in implementing it. The point is making everyone excited about this new, wonderful feeling when everything just works for the user. Once we're all in agreement that this is how it should be, then we can iron out the details.

I like pointing out the user's sigh of relief when they think about how much easier this new experience is than the last one they had. It's especially useful when others on the team agree with the pain points created by the current experience, but they haven't discussed them until we go over the scenarios as a team.

After we've all gone over our scenarios and agree that this is indeed the experience we want to create, I jump into sitemaps and wireframes to illustrate each step in the scenarios. Ideally, there's no reason to create a page or a screen if it doesn't speak to one of our scenarios, so this leads to a tighter sitemap and no more wireframes or mockups than we'll need to build.
​​​​​​​Scenarios are the perfect step between understanding who we're designing for and what we're going to build to best serve their needs. It's also where all the research made so far starts to allow for a bit of creativity, so it's important to have enough of both in the mix.