Product Management Is Really Innovation Management

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No list of tasks or responsibilities captures the essence of product management. As companies grapple with the challenges with innovation, they have realized that the product manager is really the shepherd of innovation. The essential role of product management, therefore, starts with the generation of ideas, and does not end until customers adopt these ideas, and the company has assessed the assumptions and strategies for every part of the innovation process.

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  • Source: Federal Computer Week, 09/20/10
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  • Source: Diffusion of Innovations image (http://www.amazon.com/Diffusion-Innovations-5th-Everett-Rogers/dp/0743222091).
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  • Product Management Is Really Innovation Management

    1. 1. Product Management Is Really Innovation Management<br />Product Camp Silicon Valley 2011<br />
    2. 2. Product managers (PMs) own the bridge between the business and IT, improving the odds of successful innovation.<br />
    3. 3. QUESTION:<br />What is innovation?<br />
    4. 4. Innovation creates value<br />VALUE<br />
    5. 5. Customers want solutions, not inventions<br />“How important are the following factors when selecting the best vendor for a technology purchase?”<br />The vendor's level of fit with our specific need at a specific time<br />31%<br />Customers wantto be assuredthat adoptionwill succeed . . .<br />The sales person’s ability to get things done for us<br />29%<br />The sales person’s ability to understand our business problem<br />28%<br />The vendor's reputation in the marketplace (e.g., a safe choice)<br />27%<br />. . . not hear abouthow impressivethe technology is.<br />Prior experience with the vendor<br />23%<br />Executive-level relationships between the vendor and our company<br />16%<br />Base: 152 B2B marketing professionals in the US, UK, France, and Germany(multiple responses accepted)<br />Source: North American And European B2B Social Technographics® Online Survey, Q1 2010<br />
    6. 6. Innovation is about mutual value<br />CHALLENGE<br />EXAMPLE<br />Who<br />“We don’t understand our customers, or what they value.”<br />What<br />“We have lots of ideas, but we don’t know how to choose among them.”<br />Why<br />“We often lose track of the business objectives behind technology adoption.”<br />When<br />“We never seem to deliver the technology at the right time.”<br />How<br />“We do too much re-engineering.”<br />
    7. 7. Innovation isn’t just invention<br />2001<br />2005<br />2006<br />2010<br />2008<br />
    8. 8. But invention is a key element of success<br />Agile helps teamsmove swiftly andaccurately.<br />Success depends on relationships in the team and between the team and stakeholders.<br />Requirements are the language that describes value in the customer’s terms.<br />
    9. 9. Even the best inventors don’t always innovate<br />Focus on invention, not adoption.<br />
    10. 10. Academic studies of innovation also have gaps<br />Focus on adoption, not invention.<br />Market share<br />Earlymajority34%<br />Latemajority34%<br />Laggards16%<br />Innovators2.5%<br />Earlyadopters13.5%<br />
    11. 11. Combining invention and adoption<br />THE INNOVATION PROCESS<br />Assess<br />Adopt<br />Deliver<br />Build<br />Test<br />Conceive<br />But who owns this process from start to finish?<br />
    12. 12. QUESTION:<br />What is a product?<br />
    13. 13. This is a product, not a service<br />It does not differ significantly from a SaaS product offering.<br />
    14. 14. This is a product<br />10 million lines of code, plus 100 electronic controllers, each with its own IP address<br />
    15. 15. Services might be products<br />By productizing, companies hope to make services easier to reproduce and more predictable in their outcomes.<br />
    16. 16. A simple definition of what product managers manage<br />Product (n):<br />A discrete piece of technology designed to make a valuable contribution to one or more larger solutions<br />
    17. 17. Products define a quantum of value<br />Compartmentalization<br />Simplification<br />Design<br />Re-usability<br />Maintenance<br />Performance<br />
    18. 18. QUESTION:<br />What is product management’s role in innovation?<br />
    19. 19. What is a product manager?<br />Responsible for the success of a product over its entire life cycle<br />Manages product within the larger portfolio<br />Collects, analyzes, and prioritizes requirements<br />Translates between languages of engineers and business users<br />Supports teams responsible for the delivery of the technology<br />Rewarded based on the adoption of the technology<br />Builds long-term partnerships between technologists and business users<br />
    20. 20. PMs shepherd products through innovation<br />Are we capturing all the potentially good ideas?<br />Are we building the technology in the right way?<br />Are we delivering overall value?<br />Assess<br />Adopt<br />Deliver<br />Build<br />Test<br />Conceive<br />Which ideas are worth pursuing?<br />Is the rest of the organization ready to deliver this technology?<br />Did we achieve the desired business outcomes?<br />
    21. 21. And that’s how top-notch PMs see it<br />Source: July 7, 2009, “Best Practices For Product Management And Product Marketing Leaders” report, prepared exclusively for Forrester Leadership Boards<br />
    22. 22. QUESTION:<br />What does this mean for job descriptions? Team structure?<br />
    23. 23. Questions?<br />
    24. 24. Thank you<br />Tom Grant<br />+1.650.581.3846<br />tgrant@forrester.com<br />www.forrester.com<br />

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