ProductCamp RTP 2010 - Strategy Round Table - Wyatt Isabel


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  • How does strategy differ from tactics?
  • How do you stay aware of the events that can impact your product strategy?
    How many of us use the generic strategies?
  • How do the functional plans of Customer Service, Engineering, Finance and Marketing influence Product Strategy?
  • How many of us do quarterly updates? Any more frequent?
    A frequent cause of failure is the use of ‘plug’ numbers or ‘SWAGs”
  • How many of us are familiar with this model?
    How many of us use this model?
  • Do you use a shared central repository?
    How many cross-functional constituents contribute data?
    Is there a team ‘Strategy Room’?
    Do you use gap analysis?
    Refer to template on page 248
  • How many of you use the SWOT model to synthesize data into useful information?
    Opportunities arise from finding creative ways to respond to threats: Do last.
    Do you believe that it is an effective tool?
    What are other best practices that you use to help you develop the insights needed to formulate your product vision?
  • ProductCamp RTP 2010 - Strategy Round Table - Wyatt Isabel

    1. 1. Leading Product Strategy A Facilitated Roundtable Discussion Wyatt K. Isabel October 30, 2010
    2. 2. Thank you to our sponsors:
    3. 3. Abstract • Is your process for leading product strategy a competitive advantage or a hindrance? In this highly interactive discussion, we will explore current best practices of successful companies and pose key questions to all attendees to gain a greater understanding of what we, as practitioners, see as the most successful methods for leading product strategy, and together find answers to this perplexing question. • As a resource, attendees may want to review Ch. 10 of ‘The Product Manager’s Desk Reference’ by Steven Haines, published 2009 by McGraw-Hill
    4. 4. Agenda • Introductions • Expectations of participants • Discuss ‘What is Product Strategy?’ • Use the Haines model as a discussion framework • The floor is always open for sharing of best practices! • Discuss SWOT model • Review of expectations and summarize
    5. 5. What is Product Strategy? • “A strategy defines what is going to be done and how it’s going to be done.” • “Strategies formulated by the product manager propose the execution parameters for a product or for the portfolio of products.” • “Well-formulated strategies set the stage for robust, ongoing planning and decision making throughout the product life cycle.”
    6. 6. The Dynamic Continuum • “Strategy addresses an entire chain of events or actions that may be separated in space and time along the value chain.” – Michael Porter suggests: • Product team structure should follow product strategy (with the PM at the epicenter) • Generic strategies can play a key role in any product strategy: – Product differentiation – Cost minimization – Market focus • “Every product or business opportunity has a starting point and an objective.” – To be successful, you must know: • Where you’ve been • Where you are now • Where you want to go • “Dynamic strategic thinking helps product managers to process and accommodate higher levels of risk and uncertainty.”
    7. 7. Mastering the Waterfall Corporate Divisional Product Line • “Corporate strategy must interlock with division or business unit strategy which must, in turn, cascade into portfolio, product line, and product strategies” • “Sorting out (or even adjusting) this cascade is one of the larger responsibilities of the product manager.” • “Functional strategies tend to introduce elements that result in sub-optimization, which is the bane of good (product) strategy because it inhibits overall performance.”
    8. 8. Strategy in Your World • “All too often, strategic plans are created to satisfy some corporate edict.” – Do you agree? • “Strategic planning for products should not be a once-a-year event if your goal is success.” – Who drives and how often? • “Another challenge for product managers…is reconciling strategic product planning with the annual budgeting process.” – Does strategy drive the budget, or vice versa?
    9. 9. The ‘Product as a Business’ Strategic Planning Model Past and Current Period Product and Product Performance Data Synthesis of Product And Product Performance Data Create or Refine the Vision for The Product Determine Strategic Options and Opportunities Concept Feasibility Definition New Product Planning Baseline A B C D
    10. 10. The ‘Product as a Business’ Strategic Planning Model • A. Establish a Baseline: compare where you’ve been to where you are now – How do you gather, organize and analyze the data? – How do you synthesize the data into useful information? – How do you organize and conduct product strategy reviews? • B. Formulate or reformulate your vision for the product based on A. and cast it as the driving force for your product. – How do you formulate where you want to go? • C. Identify your strategic options by specifying how you will employ all elements of the marketing mix and other supporting business functions to achieve your market objectives. – How do you leverage your cross functional team to assist you in this task? • D. Link your strategic options to the Product Management Life Cycle Model – How effectively does your team feed the strategy into the PMLCM?
    11. 11. Using The SWOT Model Strengths Opportunities Weaknesses Threats
    12. 12. Using the SWOT Model • Strengths: How is your product positively differentiated from its rivals? • Weaknesses: Identify the causals that explain why a product is performing poorly against its rivals. • Threats: What factors/events in the marketplace can cost you customers and/or market share? • Opportunities: How will you leverage strengths, overcome weaknesses and respond to threats to achieve success?
    13. 13. Summary • “Product Managers have the responsibility of creating a vision and strategy for their products, consistent with division and company strategy.” • “What is involved is a lot of hard work in collecting and using data to reveal secrets about the markets within which you operate, the customers you serve, the internal stakeholders who are supposed to deliver the systems and infrastructure elements that support the business, and excellent service in support of customers”. • Have we met your session expectations?
    14. 14. Thank you to our sponsors: