Mon.Mar 23, 2020

10 Ways a Feature-Less Roadmap Helps Your Product Strategy


Since releasing both a webinar and book on the impact of feature-less roadmaps on your product strategy recently, we’ve gotten a lot of questions about why we’re so hostile to including features on product roadmaps.

Product Management in Times of Crisis

The Product Coalition

The role of the product manager is to focus the team even and especially in time of crisis Human Behavior While we all watch the world as it handles the crisis of the coronavirus in various ways including all the different ways we human beings are used to respond to events, it is an amazing opportunity to reflect how similar things happen in our organization in the face of even small events. We see countries, organizations and people act in various ways, some in a very responsible way and some in panic, some following any information without checking it and some working based on data. I am definitely not going to reflect on how the world should behave or even how local politics should behave in such a case. I will leave it to the readers to deduct their own conclusions, even though you can’t really make a straight deduction because it is not the same situation. I do think however that whatever I say that is valid for the local product or organization is also valid for a wider scale. It just might be someone else responsibility because there is no product manager in those areas and there are probably many many more parameters to consider. Crisis Flow When we work on a product we have our strategy, our roadmap, and our plan. The team can execute it and we adapt it in an agile way as we go. Sometimes the plan can face a crisis. It can be a good crisis such as a big potential customer on our foot door that may require some new features to be developed very fast to win them or a bad crisis such as a critical problem in our production system that might cause it to stop working if we do not handle it properly in time. In such situations, several things might happen. If the process works as it should, the right people will jump on the crisis or the opportunity and will do the necessary things to work on it and solve what is needed to be solved within time. That is the easy part, even though it sometimes seems like magic. What we may see many times is that around this process unnecessary behaviors might happen. Suddenly some people think they need to get a status every 5 minutes and that if they are not on top of it nothing will happen. Other people are sure that the whole team needs to work to solve the crisis and nobody should do anything else because it is not right to discuss or handle other things while everything fall apart. Under Control This is the time in which a good product manager can make a difference. Our job is to calm things, put them in proportion and make sure that while the right team solves the crisis we keep the collateral damage to the rest of our plan minimal. First, we need to analyze the crisis and make sure it gets the right resources. No less. No more. Many times, this happens even without us. The system knows its job. Second, we need to make sure to control the flow of information. We need to make sure that the team working on the crisis has all the right data on the situation. We need to make sure that the rest of the team gets timely updates and does not interfere with the team working on the crisis. We actually have to protect this team. And last, once things are in motion we need to make sure whoever is not needed for solving the crisis can continue to work. We may need to shift priorities, update the plan and move things around. But there is no point in paralyzing the team. The crisis will be over at some point in the future. When we get out of it we do not want to discover that we handled the crisis well while neglecting everything else and creating many other small problems. We don’t want to discover that the crisis was abused for neglecting the big things that we believe would make an impact on our product and customers. Framing Everything A mentee of mine just told me that in her company the executives took the situation of the current corona crisis as an opportunity to break all processes. They have seen very interesting opportunities to act fast and produce features that can help them possibly gaining new customers because of the crisis and started bombarding the team with many new features that need to be developed now and immediately. They have abandoned all processes of analysis of data, roadmap aside, and let work just on intuition because we don’t have time to lose. The important question here is not whether their decision is right or wrong. The important question is how we as product managers can help our organization make sure that the right decisions are taken because executives in panic do not remember all constraints or the stakes. From the executives’ perspective, they have probably seen a roadmap some time ago, and everything that is for the next quarter is considered to them as already done. When they ask for new things they have no idea what is the price. Our job is to ask a lot of questions and frame the situation. We need to reflect on what is going to be delayed if we take a new approach. We need to maybe create new temporary metrics to follow if we decide that for a short time there is a better opportunity to follow. We need to make sure that if as a product group we decide to change the direction of the ship because we are now facing a new market situation, it is done with eyes open. Summary Focus is almost always the key to success. As product manager making sure the team is focused on the right things is almost the most important thing we do both in calm times as well as in a time of crisis. Keep Calm and Focus And don’t forget. If you enjoyed the reading you can clap up to 50 times. Originally published at Product Management in Times of Crisis was originally published in on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story. focus keep-calm crisis

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

10 extremely relatable product management comics

The Product Coalition

We know that times are tough, but when has our job been easy anyway? Here are 10 comics that’ll remind you that work from home isn’t that bad after all. Follow Shipping Tomorrow on Instagram and Twitter for your weekly dose of product management humor.

From Zero to Hero: How Product Management Can Transform Your IT Department

280 Group

Utilizing the Product Management discipline yields big results. Give me $3M dollars and I’ll build you a million-dollar solution” said, no one ever. Yet, running IT with a cost-center mentality often leads to this kind of thinking.

Build vs Buy: 10 Hidden Costs of Building Analytics with UI Components

Many teams, as a logical first step, choose to build their own analytics with the help of UI components. But eventually you’ll find that doing it yourself and at scale has hidden costs. Consider these 10 factors when deciding whether you should build analytics features with UI components.

This Is Not and Cannot Be “Business as Usual”

Johanna Rothman

Many organizations heeded the COVID-19 warnings and sent people home to work as remote teams. The managers want to proceed as if the people can work from home and have “business as usual.” ” They've made these requests to their staff: Work at home, as if you were at the office.

More Trending

To Kill or Persevere: How Do You Score Innovation Projects?


Leaders often struggle with judging and making decisions on innovation projects. When faced with several teams that have been working on new innovative business ideas, leaders find it difficult to choose the ideas to give further investment and the ideas to stop.

Books 68

TEI 275: Become a better problem solver by reframing the problem – with Thomas Wedell-Wedellsborg

Product Innovation Educators

How product managers can find a new angle on problems and be better problem solvers. Image credit: Gregers Heering. One of the most powerful tools available to product managers and innovators is, wait for it… reframing! We use it in two primary ways. First, to help us solve the right problem.

From objectives to roadmap, the strategy behind product development?—?Part I: A data driven…

The Product Coalition

From objectives to roadmap, the strategy behind product development?—?Part

How to Scale Yourself and Your PM Career


Nancy Wang knows a little bit about climbing the product management ladder. Her own career has spanned a diverse range of industries, from government to non-profits, and now, to tech.

Building Healthy Innovation Ecosystems for Your Projects

Speaker: Nick Noreña, Innovation Coach and Advisor, Kromatic

In this webinar, Nick Noreña will walk through an Innovation Ecosystem Model that he and his team at Kromatic have developed to help investors, heads of product, teachers, and executives understand how they can best support innovation in their own ecosystem. He'll also go over metrics we can use to measure the health of our ecosystems as we build more resources for innovators.

Remote Agile (Part 1)

The Product Coalition

TL; DR: Remote Agile, Part 1: Practices & Tools for Scrum Masters, Agile Coaches, and Product Owners Agile has always been about colocation, about direct communication, physical boards, and all the other haptic and analog moments to create value in the digital realm.

Agile 78

Preaching real Product Management – with Marty Cagan


Product Management legend Marty Cagan shared his insights on ‘real’ Product Management in a Q&A session with Product Women Sydney at a March meetup. With clients that include many of the best technology-powered businesses in the world, Marty Cagan is one of the most well-known and respected leaders in the Product Management industry.

How to measure user retention and why it’s so important for you to understand it?

The Product Coalition

What is user retention?

My Journey to Find the North Star


Over the past four-ish years in my role as a product manager—despite my best efforts/intentions—I noticed a disturbing pattern. Most of the products and features we were releasing failed to live up to what we hoped for. Most weren’t outright failures, but nothing seemed to really make an impact.

Design Thinking for Product Teams: Leverage Human Insight Throughout Development

Product teams must increase their exposure hours with customers—seeing and hearing them. Human insights and the design thinking framework can be applied to your development cycle to help you build better products and experiences for your customers.

Transitioning To Remote? Maximize Product Management Success With These Practical Tips

The Product Coalition

Steering stakeholders towards a common vision in the highly cross-functional product manager role doesn’t have to be daunting when working remote I’m used to having the discipline of planning my life around work in the office.

7 reasons to join the productboard Sales team


I joined productboard back in October. In the four months since, I’ve seen the company grow rapidly. Just last month, we announced the closing of our Series B round of funding, raising an additional $45 million in investment. It’s fair to say that this is a company that’s going places.


15 Working From Home Memes to Brighten Up Your Day

The Product Coalition

The recent pandemic has forced everyone to work from home regardless of where you are. I hope these meme will lighten up your day! Continue reading on ». startup working-from-home technology funny product-management

[Survival Tips] Homeschooling During Coronavirus Closings

Nir Eyal

The post [Survival Tips] Homeschooling During Coronavirus Closings appeared first on Nir and Far. Indistractable Relationships


A New Segmentation Model for Customer Onboarding

In this eBook, we will show you a new framework for building a customer onboarding program, including how to segment users and drive long-term value and retention through education.

Staying Productive as a Remote Product Manager in the new COVID-19 World

The Product Coalition

Many tech companies have responded to the coronavirus pandemic by shutting down offices and having employees work from home. Remote work is most likely going to be the new norm for the next few months. We as product managers will have to adapt to this situation and stay productive.

How productboard can help your organization weather today’s storm


As the global health crisis grows, we wish you, your team, and your loved ones health and safety in this challenging time. Many of us are beginning to experience this crisis firsthand, or have experienced immediate after-effects like suddenly moving to full-time remote work. A cloud of uncertainty looms overhead, as customers question every expenditure and businesses look to reduce costs. There’s. Source. Company & Product


3 things I learned when achieving economies of scale as an entrepreneur.

The Product Coalition

Economies of scale are fundamental for any product or business in any industry. The concept represents the cost and competitive advantages… Continue reading on ». product-management strategy entrepreneurship buisness startup

I How I Got Fired From My Product Manager Job

The Accidental Product Manager

I had to say goodbye to my product manager job because I got fired Image Credit: Photo by Gift Habeshaw on Unsplash. So before we dive into my tale of woe, let’s first make sure that we are all on the same page at least in terms of vocabulary.

More Effective Agile Leadership

Speaker: Steve McConnell, CEO, Construx Software

In this talk, Steve McConnell, CEO of Construx Software, distills hundreds of companies’-worth of real-world experience into the proven Agile leadership practices that work best. Steve will seamlessly thread together traditional approaches, early Agile approaches, modern Agile approaches, and the principles and context that underlie them all—creating an invaluable resource for Agile leaders, their teams, and their organizations.

Product Metrics?—?How to measure a product

The Product Coalition

Product Metrics?—?How How to measure a product I recently watched this video by YC where Suhail Doshi (Co-founder of Mixpanel) talks on how to discover important facts about products. Since the lecture’s transcript and slides links are broken, I have listed down my takeaways here for a quick 2 minutes read. While defining metrics of any product, we should be able to answer 3 broad-level questions about the product 1. Is the product easy to understand?

B2B 60