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Product vs Program/Project Management

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Discussion of what technology product managers do, and how this differs from program/project management. Presents idealized role division, knowing that no organization matches the idea. For IEEE-TMC …

Discussion of what technology product managers do, and how this differs from program/project management. Presents idealized role division, knowing that no organization matches the idea. For IEEE-TMC local meeting

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  • Who has PMs? Who doesn’t?Where does PM report up through?What distinguishes good PMs from weak in your org?Categories: technical skills; org power; reporting path; customer knowledge; work products; who’s driving/deciding?; title confusion…
  • No natural sequence for PMMust work all aspects in parallelPlanning onion as simultaneous equationBottoms-Up Shapes Top-DownCustomer visits inform market viewCompetitive price points drive business modelFeature complexity shapes release planTop-Down Shapes Bottoms-UpMarket segmentation determines customer selection and benefitsProduct strategy drives backlogProduct Management provides strategy, judgment and integration as well as executionOwning market success is an unbounded problem
  • Earn your pay on days when you make decisions, not just oversee processes
  • Balanced focus between what markets/segments want and what development team can deliver
  • Experiential component that’s not well taught or certified. Contrasts with PMI PMP. No governing authority, no rating system other than personal references.Program/project managers see the resource/marshaling part of the product role, but not always the selling/organizational/outbound part.Dev consistently wants to promote good engineers into product roles. Mostly they lack relevant field experience, organizational savvy, customer skills, ability to handle uncertainty.
  • Valley does not check with me before assigning roles, titles or work mix
  • Essential question: who worries about market acceptance? Sales targets? Competition?
  • Not cleanly divided. Good PMs and PgMs are intertwined.
  • Ask about use cases and customer problemsVs. wanting PMs to settle internal technical/architecture disputesDon’t demand PMs as technical as you areYou have architects and senior devs to be the most technicalNot every user story gets its own ROI Not every field, button, featurelet can be independently justified. Customer-relevant value may roll up dozens of small bits.Expect PMs to translate features into customer-relevant benefitsThey have to turn your how-it-works into a sales team’s why-you-careAsk about forecasts, shipments and revenueShows you care about the business as well as the tech, and you’ll learn somethingQUIETLY sit in on some customer meetingsIf you talk out of turn, you won’t get invited back.Channel your inner Product ManagerOnce in a while, pretend you’re the PM and consider how you’d think through whole product issues. WWPMD?
  • Transcript

    • 1. Product Management Essentials for Project and Program Managers
      Rich MironovOctober 6, 2011
    • 2. About Rich Mironov
      Veteran product manager/exec/strategist
      Business models, pricing, agile
      Organizing product organizations
      “What do customers want?”
      5 startups, including as CEO/founder
      Author of “The Art of Product Management” and Product Bytes blog
      Founded Product Camp, chaired first product stage at annual Agile conferences
    • 3. Agenda
      3
      Sharing: your good and bad experiences with product management
      What does a product manager do, anyway?
      Product vs. Project/Program Management
      7 ways to help your product manager
    • 4. Sharing Your Good And Bad Product Management Experiences
    • 5. Agenda
      5
      Sharing: your good and bad experiences with product management
      What does a product manager do, anyway?
      Product vs. Project/Program Management
      7 ways to help your product manager
    • 6. What Does a Product Manager Do?
      For commercial / revenue software…
      Drives delivery and market acceptance of whole products
      Targets market segments, not individual customers
      Sets priorities
      For strategic internal development…
      Resolves competing priorities
      Drives acceptance and adoption
    • 7. Product
      Management
      Executives
      Development
      What Does a Product Manager Do?
      strategy, forecasts, commitments, roadmaps,competitive intelligence
      budgets, staff,
      targets
      market information, priorities,
      requirements, roadmaps, MRDs,
      personas, user stories…
      Field input,
      Market feedback
      Mktg & Sales
      Markets & Customers
      software
      Segmentation, messages, benefits/features, pricing, qualification, demos…
    • 8. Product Mgmt Planning Horizons
      many years
      Exec
      Strategy
      years
      Portfolio
      many mons
      Prod
      Mgr
      Product
      2-9 mon
      Release
      Dev
      Team
      Sprint
      2 wk
      Daily
    • 9. Pragmatic Marketing® Framework
      Dir, Prod Strategy
      Prod Mktg Mgr
      Tech Prod Mgr
      BusinessPlan
      MarketingPlan
      Positioning
      Pricing
      Market Problems
      Customer Acquisition
      BuyingProcess
      Market Definition
      Buy, Build or Partner
      Win/Loss Analysis
      Customer Retention
      Buyer Personas
      Distribution Strategy
      Product Profitability
      Distinctive Competence
      Program Effectiveness
      UserPersonas
      Product Portfolio
      Business
      Market
      Programs
      Planning
      Strategy
      Support
      Readiness
      Business
      Market
      Programs
      Planning
      Strategy
      Support
      Readiness
      Innovation
      Competitive Landscape
      LaunchPlan
      Require- ments
      Product Roadmap
      Presentations & Demos
      SalesProcess
      Technology Assessment
      Thought Leadership
      UseScenarios
      “Special”Calls
      Collateral
      Lead Generation
      Status Dashboard
      EventSupport
      SalesTools
      Referrals & References
      ChannelSupport
      Channel Training
      © 1993-2009 Pragmatic Marketing, Inc. All rights reserved
    • 10. Nature of Product Role
      No natural sequence for Product Mgmt
      Must work all aspects in parallel
      Entire planning onion
      Intensely interrupt-driven
      Bottoms-up shapes top-down, top-down shapes bottoms-up
      Product Management must provide strategy, judgment and integration as well as execution
    • 11. Good product managers drive customer-relevant decisions (choices) despite uncertainty and contradictory goals
    • 12. Market Failure Modes for Product Mgrs
      Inward-looking failure modes
      Weak onreal-world value: pricing, packaging, upgrades, servicemodels,discounting, competitive dynamics
      Disconnected from cross-functional teams (Marketing, Sales, Support…)
      Trading off company-wide product strategy for product-level features
      Generalizing from too few customers
      Belief in rational users and accurate ROI
    • 13. “How Hard Could It Be?”
      Imagine that I create a two-day seminar for “Senior Enterprise Software Architects”
      Anyone can enroll
      We talk about enterprise architecture
      All attendees get a “Senior Enterprise Software Architect” certificate
      Are they senior architects?
    • 14. Agenda
      14
      Participants: your good and bad experiences with product management
      What does a product manager do, anyway?
      Product vs. Project/Program Management
      7 ways to help your product manager
    • 15. Product, Project, Program?
      Disclaimer
      No role/title consistency
      Execs create organizations
      Unclear division of labor
      Each tech company uniquely dysfunctional
      Good teams make things work regardless of titles or roles
    • 16. In My Opinion…
      Product Management: more outward-facing market-visible decisions
      What FEATURES are market segments demanding?
      WHICH must-ship feature will we drop first?
      SALES impact of slipped dates? Commitments?
      How are we POSITIONED and PRICED versus competitors?
      Project/Program Management: more inward-facing resource allocation decisions
      HOW should we get this done? WHO works on what?
      WHEN will it actually ship?
      Have we defined and met QUALITY goals?
      What outside RESOURCES could speed things up?
    • 17. It’s About Customer Realities
      Product managers stay in touch by…
      Helping close deals
      Trading off conflictingcommitments
      Intervening with complex customer problems
      Sweating price/volume forecasts
      Anchoring opinions with lots of first person customer/field input
      Source:
      Pragmatic Marketing
    • 18. One Problem, Two Viewpoints
      Two sides of the problem:
      Product Managers tasked with what to build (and when)
      Not-so-secretly worries about delivery, quality, completeness
      Project/Program Managers tasked with how to deliver
      Not-so-secretly worries about market success
    • 19. Agenda
      19
      Participants: your good and bad experiences with product management
      What does a product manager do, anyway?
      Product vs. Project/Program Management
      7 ways to help product managers
    • 20. 7 Good Ways to Help Product Mgrs
      Push for explicit decisions and trade-offs
      Ask about use cases and customer problems
      Don’t demand uber-technical product managers
      Not every sub-feature gets its own ROI
      Expect product managers to translate features into customer-relevant benefits
      Ask about forecasts, shipments and revenue
      Channel your inner Product Manager
    • 21. Contact Information
      +1-650-315-7394
      rich@mironov.com
      www.mironov.com
      @RichMironov
      www.linkedin.com/in/richmironov
    • 22. Product Management Essentials for Project and Program Managers
      Rich MironovOctober 6, 2011