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Art and Science of Product Management

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"How Product Managers Can Supercharge Art to Balance Science in Product Management" slides from 9/16 Product Camp. Co-presented by Steve Youngblood and Caroline Dunn.

Great Product Management is 1/2 art and 1/2 science. We've got science and process down. "Art" though seems to be a lost one. This presentation will help product pros re-energize their use of intuition and discovery to provide fuel for their development roadmaps.

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Art and Science of Product Management

  1. 1. HOW PRODUCT MANAGERS CAN SUPERCHARGE ART TO BALANCE SCIENCE Steve Youngblood Caroline Dunn @thecarolinedunn@newbrew
  2. 2. THIS SESSION GREAT PRODUCT MANAGEMENT IS 1/2 ART AND 1/2 SCIENCE. WE'VE GOT SCIENCE AND PROCESS DOWN. "ART" THOUGH SEEMS TO BE A LOST ONE. THIS PRESENTATION WILL HELP PRODUCT PROS RE-ENERGIZE THEIR USE OF INTUITION AND DISCOVERY TO PROVIDE FUEL FOR THEIR DEVELOPMENT ROADMAPS.
  3. 3. “YOU CAN’T WRITE CODE, YOU’RE NOT AN ENGINEER, YOU’RE NOT A DESIGNER, YOU CAN’T PUT A HAMMER TO A NAIL. I BUILT THE CIRCUIT BOARD, THE GRAPHICAL INTERFACE WAS STOLEN FROM XEROX PARC, JEF RASKIN WAS THE LEADER OF THE MAC TEAM BEFORE YOU THREW HIM OFF HIS OWN PROJECT. EVERYTHING — SOMEONE ELSE DESIGNED THE BOX! SO HOW COME 10 TIMES IN A DAY, I READ “STEVE JOBS IS A GENIUS.” WHAT DO YOU DO?” - STEVE WOZNIAK IN THE STEVE JOBS MOVIE
  4. 4. CAROLINE’S STORY • BEFORE GEORGIA TECH • BACHELOR OF ELECTRICAL ENGINEERING • MASTERS OF SCIENCE IN ELECTRICAL AND COMPUTER ENGINEERING • SUPERBOWL DANCER On the Runway SuperBowl XXXIV 1997 1999
  5. 5. GRAD SCHOOL POSTER COMPETITIONS
  6. 6. NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION PRESENTATION
  7. 7. BUT, WHAT ELSE DO PRODUCT MANAGERS DO? • OBSERVE THE MARKET FOR TRENDS • OBSERVE OTHER MARKETS TO SEE HOW THEY RELATE TO OURS • MEET WITH CUSTOMERS TO SURVEY THEIR THEIR THOUGHTS • DOWNLOAD AND TRY MANY OTHER SOFTWARE APPS, EVEN OUTSIDE OF OUR DOMAIN • GO TO APPLE STORE EVENTS • HIKE • PLAY MUSIC REALLY LOUD, FOR INSPIRATION • GET OUR CREATIVE ON Before building, Product Managers Discover. But how?
  8. 8. TRUE STORY •PRODUCTS NEARLY READY, MY BOSS, THE FOUNDER, CHAIRMAN AND CEO OF THE COMPANY CALLED ME OVER TO HIS OFFICE •“I WAS IN THE SHOWER THIS MORNING AND THE NAME OF OUR NEW PRODUCT JUST HIT ME” •MY THOUGHT, “MUST START DRAWING IN THE CONDENSATION ON THE SHOWER GLASS MORE” •CRAZY, INSIGHTFUL, CREATIVE?
  9. 9. STEPS TO BEING A BETTER ARTIST COBRA (FROM AMY HERMAN’S BOOK “VISUAL INTELLIGENCE: SHARPEN YOUR PERCEPTION, CHANGE YOUR LIFE”). • C – CONCENTRATE ON THE CAMOUFLAGED. LOOK FOR THINGS THAT ARE NOT VERY OBVIOUS. • O – ONE THING AT A TIME. KEEP YOUR FOCUS ON ONE THING AT A TIME. WATCH IT IN DETAIL. • B – TAKE A BREAK. GO FOR A WALK. DO SOMETHING ELSE. • R – RE-ALIGN YOUR EXPECTATION. LET GO OF ANY PRECONCEIVED NOTIONS THAT YOU MIGHT HAVE ABOUT THE SITUATION. • A – ASK SOMEONE ELSE TO LOOK WITH YOU. TAKE A SECOND OPINION.
  10. 10. AN AHA MOMENT • 10 YEARS AGO I MET A PERSON IN JOHNS CREEK WHO IS NOW ONE OF MY BEST FRIENDS • WORKS IN HOTEL MANAGEMENT • 5 YEARS AGO WE WENT TO PLAY GOLF AND HE PROCEEDED TO TELL ME HOW MESSED UP HOUSEKEEPING MANAGEMENT WAS • I WAS HOOKED. MAINLY BECAUSE I HAD NO IDEA WHAT HE WAS TALKING ABOUT. THE GOLF WAS RELAXING, SO WAS THE BEER. DO TELL. • HE TOLD ME THE STORY ABOUT HOUSEKEEPERS USING PRINTED LISTS TO TELL THE HOUSEKEEPERS WHAT ROOMS TO CLEAN. • WHAT? THAT STUFF CHANGES ALL THE TIME, I SAID. HE SAID, “YEP”.
  11. 11. AHA MOMENT, CONTINUED • THAT COULDN’T BE, PAPER IN A DIGITAL AGE • THUS MY TREK TO INTERVIEWING 350 HOTEL GMS, VENDORS AND EVEN EXECS OF TWO OF THE WORLD’S LARGEST FRANCHISE ORGANIZATIONS • I THEN COMPILED A LIST OF POTENTIAL FEATURES AND PACKAGING AND THEN PRESENTED THEM TO SOME OF THE INTERVIEWEES. • TODAY WE HAVE A BETA PRODUCT AND AN EXPANDING LIST OF MUST HAVES. • AND IT ALL STARTED WITH A FRIENDLY GAME OF GOLF ON A NICE SATURDAY WITH A FEW ADULT BEVERAGES
  12. 12. ATLANTA RUNNING GUIDE Realized there was a need Launched a survey and collected 250+ responses in a week Analyzed the Results Published Results
  13. 13. SURVEY RESULTS (BEFORE)
  14. 14. SURVEY RESULTS (AFTER)
  15. 15. GOING THE EXTRA MILE
  16. 16. IN CONCLUSION • SPEND MORE TIME DISCOVERING THEN DEFINING, JUST AS ENGINEERS SPEND MORE TIME DESIGNING THEN BUILDING • WHEN DISCOVERING, DON’T FORGET THOSE UNCONVENTIONAL METHODS • LOOK AT ALL THINGS AROUND YOU, IN TOWN OR IN THE COUNTRY • ASK FRIENDS IN DIFFERENT INDUSTRIES WHAT THEY’RE UP TO. BUT, REALLY LISTEN TO THEIR PROBLEMS • FIND ALONE TIME TO READ TECH NEWS TO SEE WHAT OTHERS ARE UP TO • DO NOTHING AT TIMES • CONTINUE TO INVEST IN PROCESS SO YOUR IDEAS CAN GROW UP AND EFFICIENTLY BECOME PRODUCTS
  17. 17. APPENDIX
  18. 18. SCIENCE IS CLEAR CUT • PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT PROCESS: 'SCIENCE’ IS APPLIED HERE WITH AGILE, VARIOUS QA METHODOLOGIES, RELEASE PROCESSES AND SO ON • MARKET ANALYSIS: SWOT AND PORTER’S 5 FORCES • PROJECT ANALYSIS: NPV. • PROJECT MANAGEMENT: PLANNING AND SCHEDULING
  19. 19. SCIENCE DRIVES CERTIFICATIONS ALL GREAT CERTIFICATIONS • SCRUM CERTIFIED • STRUCTURED AGILE FRAMEWORK (SAFE) CERTIFIED • PROJECT MANAGEMENT PROFESSIONAL • CERTIFIED PRODUCT MANAGER (CPM)

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