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Intro to Agile Product
Management
Rich Mironov
5 August 2015
©	
  Rich	
  Mironov,	
  2015	
  
w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 1
•  Veteran	
  product	
  manager/so<ware	
  exec	
  
•  “What	
  do	
  customers	
  want?”	
  
•  Business	
  models,	
  pricing,	
  agile/lean	
  
•  Organizing	
  product	
  organizaCons	
  
•  6	
  startups,	
  including	
  as	
  CEO/founder	
  
•  “The	
  Art	
  of	
  Product	
  Management”	
  	
  
•  First	
  agile	
  product	
  manager/owner	
  tracks	
  
About Rich Mironov
w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 2
•  What’s a Product Manager? Product Owner?
•  Scope and Failure Modes
•  Starter Organizational Models
Agenda
w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 3
•  Commercial software companies
•  Responsible for technical delivery AND revenue results
•  Scaled-up agile organizations
•  At product / portfolio / strategy levels
Usually a formal position
Focus on jobs-to-be-done and skills, not titles
Where Do We Find
Agile Product Managers?
4w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m
Scrum Teams
5ScrumTeam.jpg (from Exploring Scrum- the Fundamentals, by Dan Rawsthorne & Doug Shimp)
•  Usually one PO per team, not one PO per product
•  Provides intense sprint-level focus: stories, backlog,
prioritization, acceptance
•  Represents the customer’s interest in backlog
prioritization and requirements questions... available
to the team at any time
•  Balances interests of competing stakeholders
•  Feeds the hungry agile beast
What Does a Product Owner Do?
6w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m
Steam engine
“firemen” need to
shovel coal
constantly, otherwise
the train will stop
Feeding the Agile Beast
w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 7
Product	
  
Backlog	
  	
  
Epics	
  &	
  	
  
User	
  Stories	
  
Release	
  
Backlog	
  	
  
Epics	
  &	
  	
  
User	
  Stories	
  
Sprint	
  
Backlog	
  	
  
User	
  Stories	
  
Poten5ally	
  
releasable	
  	
  
so8ware	
  
So8ware	
  
release	
  
Accepted	
  
story	
  
(“DONE”)	
  
Review	
  
Demo,	
  
feedback	
  
Retrospec-ve	
  
Process	
  	
  
improvement	
  
1	
  day	
  
Daily	
  
Standup	
  
Sprint:	
  1	
  to	
  3	
  weeks	
  
No	
  changes	
  in	
  dura5on	
  or	
  goal	
  	
  
Release	
  	
  
planning	
  
Sprint	
  
planning	
  
Charter	
   Release	
  
Retrospec-ve	
  
Process	
  	
  
improvement	
  
N	
  sprints	
  
Agile/Scrum: Product Owner Focus
w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 8
product owner focus
•  Drives delivery and market acceptance of whole
products
•  Targets market segments, not individual customers
•  “What does this segment need/what will it pay for?”
•  Technical features, acceptance and adoption
•  Resolves inevitable competing priorities
•  Motivates/aligns functional groups
beyond development (marketing, sales,
support, partners, finance…)
What Does a Product Manager Do?
w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 9
w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 10
•  By definition, commercial software has many customers
•  Profitability is completely about scale
•  2nd copy of identical software costs $0 to build
•  Customers rarely compute value/ROI for us
•  We propose value to prospects during sales process
•  “If you use our ergonomic standing desks, your staff will be 15% healthier
and 10% more productive”
•  We segment markets for similar customers
•  Exclude those who want very different solutions
•  Exclude those who don’t accept our proposed value
Product Managers Define Value for
Specific Target Segments
11w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m
Conversations, market information,
priorities, requirements,
roadmaps, epics, user stories,
backlogs, personas…
product
bits
strategy, forecasts,
commitments, roadmaps,
competitive intelligence
budgets, staff,
targets
Field input,
Market feedback
Segmentation, messages,
benefits/features, pricing,
qualification, demos…
Markets &
CustomersDevelopment
Marketing
& Sales
Executives
Product
Management
What Does a Product Manager Do?
w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 12
•  ACTIVITY and OUTPUT (what people see)
•  Write epics/stories, meet customers, cajole, pitch prospects, call
meetings, accept epics/stories, praise teams, distract Sales, present
roadmaps, catch arrows
•  OUTCOME (where we earn our salaries):
•  Make technical/market trade-offs for revenue and adoption
•  Deflect interruptions
•  Turn away poor deals, customers and partners
•  Think about this quarter and next year; revenue and architecture
What Does a Product Manager Do?
w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 13
•  Logic and facts are not sufficient
•  Engineering demand >> supply
•  Sales teams paid to
close individual deals
•  HIPPO
•  Responsibility
without authority
•  Where strategy meets
implementation
Product Management:
Inherently Political
w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 14
•  Business value error bars > engineering error bars
•  Blending of
•  Promises of future revenue
•  Promises of future operational savings
•  Promises of future development efficiencies (tech debt)
•  Quality forced onto a linear scale
•  Simplistic models of buyer behavior
•  Gaming, logrolling
Allocating our scarcest, most valuable resource
Someone (some team) must force-rank programs
Business Value: Slightly Estimatable
15w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m
Hypothesis:
•  Epic/project business value estimates are +/- 70%
•  1 in 10 will deliver zero value
How would that change your portfolio planning?
Your interactions with stakeholders?
Discussion/Exercise (5 Minutes)
16w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m
There’s nothing more wasteful
than brilliantly engineering a
product that doesn’t sell,
or a project that
doesn’t matter.
w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 17
•  Pulls into product station every day
•  From customers, sales, support, execs, engineers, analysts…
•  Delivers hundreds of “good ideas” each day
•  Few are new or earthshaking
Good Idea Train
w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 18
•  Emotional needs vs. commitment
•  Japanese “hai” is alternative to “NO”
•  "Thank you! That's a really interesting
idea. Let me put it into the idea backlog.
And let’s talk more about the root cause
of the problem you have.”
•  NEVER agree without Dev sizing
Humbly Accepting Input
w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 19
backlog, priorities,
epics, user stories,
personas, demo feedback
product
bits
Markets &
CustomersDevelopment
Marketing
& Sales
Executives
Product
Owner
‘Small p’ Product Owner
w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 20
showcase
customers
•  Engineering output
•  Product features
•  Order of delivery
•  Product/market/business model
•  Pricing
•  Competitive positioning
•  Partners and Channels
•  Services and Support
•  Fit with corporate strategy
•  Product split, merge or EOL
Product Manager Has More Levers
Product
manager
Product
owner
A@er:	
  Greg	
  Cohen	
  
w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 21
Not what we intended, but…
•  Most product management
teams are already understaffed
•  Product ownership adds
40-60% more critical work
•  Urgency of stories, backlog grooming,
sprint planning, standups, acceptance
•  One person can “do it all” for a single agile team
•  But typical Dev:PDM ratio is 25:1, not 10:1
Product Managers: Oversubscribed,
Overcommitted, Burning Out
w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 22
Not what we intended, but…
•  Selection (hiring) focuses on SME/BA, technical
skills, story writing
•  Little appreciation for market-side experience
•  Engineering’s belief in rational/technical customers
•  Requirements are out there to be “gathered”
•  No recognition of organizational blocking skills
•  Short-term assignments or career path?
Product Owners: Typically Under-Spec’d,
Underpaid, Lacking Clout
23w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m
Product Manager Failure Modes
Product Manager fails agile team(s) when…
•  Part-timer, not engaged with team(s)
•  Lack of detail on stories/handwaving
•  Stale backlog
•  Best of intentions, but pulled in
too many directions
Product Owner Failure Modes
Product Owner fails “the business” when…
•  Weak on market realities: whole
product, competitive dynamics, value
error bars, benefits, pricing models
•  Unable to hold back interrupt stream
•  Confuses showcase customers with broad market
Commercial Product Failures
w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 26
Product	
  
Backlog	
  	
  
Epics	
  &	
  	
  
User	
  Stories	
  
Release	
  
Backlog	
  	
  
Epics	
  &	
  	
  
User	
  Stories	
  
Sprint	
  
Backlog	
  	
  
User	
  Stories	
  
Poten5ally	
  
releasable	
  	
  
so8ware	
  
So8ware	
  
release	
  
Accepted	
  
story	
  
(“DONE”)	
  
Review	
  
Demo,	
  
feedback	
  
Retrospec-ve	
  
Process	
  	
  
improvement	
  
1	
  day	
  
Daily	
  
Standup	
  
Sprint:	
  1	
  to	
  3	
  weeks	
  
No	
  changes	
  in	
  dura5on	
  or	
  goal	
  	
  
Release	
  	
  
planning	
  
Sprint	
  
planning	
  
Charter	
   Release	
  
Retrospec-ve	
  
Process	
  	
  
improvement	
  
N	
  
sprints	
  
Most	
  product	
  failures	
  	
  
happen	
  here	
  
Shared PO/PDM Scope
w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 27
Product	
  
Backlog	
  	
  
Epics	
  &	
  	
  
User	
  Stories	
  
Release	
  
Backlog	
  	
  
Epics	
  &	
  	
  
User	
  Stories	
  
Sprint	
  
Backlog	
  	
  
User	
  Stories	
  
Poten5ally	
  
releasable	
  	
  
so8ware	
  
So8ware	
  
release	
  
Accepted	
  
story	
  
(“DONE”)	
  
Review	
  
Demo,	
  
feedback	
  
Retrospec-ve	
  
Process	
  	
  
improvement	
  
1	
  day	
  
Daily	
  
Standup	
  
Sprint:	
  1	
  to	
  3	
  weeks	
  
No	
  changes	
  in	
  dura5on	
  or	
  goal	
  	
  
Release	
  	
  
planning	
  
Sprint	
  
planning	
  
Charter	
   Release	
  
Retrospec-ve	
  
Process	
  	
  
improvement	
  
N	
  
sprints	
  
product manager focus
product owner focus
Minimal PDM/PO “Organization”
w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 28
VP or Founders
more technical more market-focused
Heroic Single
Product Manager/Owner
+ team
“management”
Dysfunctional Product Organization
w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 29
VP Eng
Product
Owners
+ team
more technical more market-focused
VP Marketing
“management”
Product
Managers
PDM/PO Organizational Map:
Product Peers
w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 30
PDM Director/
Product Strategist
GM / VP Eng / VP Products / CPO
more technical more market-focused
“management”
PDM/PO Organizational Map:
Market Mentoring
w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 31
GM / VP Eng / VP Products / CPO
more technical more market-focused
Product
Owner + team
Senior Product
Manager
“management”
•  Product management scope includes market success
as well as technical delivery
•  Agile stretches/stresses commercial
product organizations
•  Teaming, collaboration and skills more
important than titles
•  Find balance among collaboration,
deflection, buffering, interrupts
Agile Product Take-Aways
32w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m
CONTACT
Rich Mironov, CEO
Mironov Consulting
233 Franklin St, Suite #308
San Francisco, CA 94102
RichMironov	
  
@RichMironov
Rich@Mironov.com	
  
+1-­‐650-­‐315-­‐7394	
  

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Agile205: Intro to Agile Product Management

  • 1. Intro to Agile Product Management Rich Mironov 5 August 2015 ©  Rich  Mironov,  2015   w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 1
  • 2. •  Veteran  product  manager/so<ware  exec   •  “What  do  customers  want?”   •  Business  models,  pricing,  agile/lean   •  Organizing  product  organizaCons   •  6  startups,  including  as  CEO/founder   •  “The  Art  of  Product  Management”     •  First  agile  product  manager/owner  tracks   About Rich Mironov w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 2
  • 3. •  What’s a Product Manager? Product Owner? •  Scope and Failure Modes •  Starter Organizational Models Agenda w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 3
  • 4. •  Commercial software companies •  Responsible for technical delivery AND revenue results •  Scaled-up agile organizations •  At product / portfolio / strategy levels Usually a formal position Focus on jobs-to-be-done and skills, not titles Where Do We Find Agile Product Managers? 4w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m
  • 5. Scrum Teams 5ScrumTeam.jpg (from Exploring Scrum- the Fundamentals, by Dan Rawsthorne & Doug Shimp)
  • 6. •  Usually one PO per team, not one PO per product •  Provides intense sprint-level focus: stories, backlog, prioritization, acceptance •  Represents the customer’s interest in backlog prioritization and requirements questions... available to the team at any time •  Balances interests of competing stakeholders •  Feeds the hungry agile beast What Does a Product Owner Do? 6w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m
  • 7. Steam engine “firemen” need to shovel coal constantly, otherwise the train will stop Feeding the Agile Beast w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 7
  • 8. Product   Backlog     Epics  &     User  Stories   Release   Backlog     Epics  &     User  Stories   Sprint   Backlog     User  Stories   Poten5ally   releasable     so8ware   So8ware   release   Accepted   story   (“DONE”)   Review   Demo,   feedback   Retrospec-ve   Process     improvement   1  day   Daily   Standup   Sprint:  1  to  3  weeks   No  changes  in  dura5on  or  goal     Release     planning   Sprint   planning   Charter   Release   Retrospec-ve   Process     improvement   N  sprints   Agile/Scrum: Product Owner Focus w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 8 product owner focus
  • 9. •  Drives delivery and market acceptance of whole products •  Targets market segments, not individual customers •  “What does this segment need/what will it pay for?” •  Technical features, acceptance and adoption •  Resolves inevitable competing priorities •  Motivates/aligns functional groups beyond development (marketing, sales, support, partners, finance…) What Does a Product Manager Do? w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 9
  • 10. w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 10
  • 11. •  By definition, commercial software has many customers •  Profitability is completely about scale •  2nd copy of identical software costs $0 to build •  Customers rarely compute value/ROI for us •  We propose value to prospects during sales process •  “If you use our ergonomic standing desks, your staff will be 15% healthier and 10% more productive” •  We segment markets for similar customers •  Exclude those who want very different solutions •  Exclude those who don’t accept our proposed value Product Managers Define Value for Specific Target Segments 11w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m
  • 12. Conversations, market information, priorities, requirements, roadmaps, epics, user stories, backlogs, personas… product bits strategy, forecasts, commitments, roadmaps, competitive intelligence budgets, staff, targets Field input, Market feedback Segmentation, messages, benefits/features, pricing, qualification, demos… Markets & CustomersDevelopment Marketing & Sales Executives Product Management What Does a Product Manager Do? w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 12
  • 13. •  ACTIVITY and OUTPUT (what people see) •  Write epics/stories, meet customers, cajole, pitch prospects, call meetings, accept epics/stories, praise teams, distract Sales, present roadmaps, catch arrows •  OUTCOME (where we earn our salaries): •  Make technical/market trade-offs for revenue and adoption •  Deflect interruptions •  Turn away poor deals, customers and partners •  Think about this quarter and next year; revenue and architecture What Does a Product Manager Do? w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 13
  • 14. •  Logic and facts are not sufficient •  Engineering demand >> supply •  Sales teams paid to close individual deals •  HIPPO •  Responsibility without authority •  Where strategy meets implementation Product Management: Inherently Political w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 14
  • 15. •  Business value error bars > engineering error bars •  Blending of •  Promises of future revenue •  Promises of future operational savings •  Promises of future development efficiencies (tech debt) •  Quality forced onto a linear scale •  Simplistic models of buyer behavior •  Gaming, logrolling Allocating our scarcest, most valuable resource Someone (some team) must force-rank programs Business Value: Slightly Estimatable 15w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m
  • 16. Hypothesis: •  Epic/project business value estimates are +/- 70% •  1 in 10 will deliver zero value How would that change your portfolio planning? Your interactions with stakeholders? Discussion/Exercise (5 Minutes) 16w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m
  • 17. There’s nothing more wasteful than brilliantly engineering a product that doesn’t sell, or a project that doesn’t matter. w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 17
  • 18. •  Pulls into product station every day •  From customers, sales, support, execs, engineers, analysts… •  Delivers hundreds of “good ideas” each day •  Few are new or earthshaking Good Idea Train w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 18
  • 19. •  Emotional needs vs. commitment •  Japanese “hai” is alternative to “NO” •  "Thank you! That's a really interesting idea. Let me put it into the idea backlog. And let’s talk more about the root cause of the problem you have.” •  NEVER agree without Dev sizing Humbly Accepting Input w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 19
  • 20. backlog, priorities, epics, user stories, personas, demo feedback product bits Markets & CustomersDevelopment Marketing & Sales Executives Product Owner ‘Small p’ Product Owner w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 20 showcase customers
  • 21. •  Engineering output •  Product features •  Order of delivery •  Product/market/business model •  Pricing •  Competitive positioning •  Partners and Channels •  Services and Support •  Fit with corporate strategy •  Product split, merge or EOL Product Manager Has More Levers Product manager Product owner A@er:  Greg  Cohen   w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 21
  • 22. Not what we intended, but… •  Most product management teams are already understaffed •  Product ownership adds 40-60% more critical work •  Urgency of stories, backlog grooming, sprint planning, standups, acceptance •  One person can “do it all” for a single agile team •  But typical Dev:PDM ratio is 25:1, not 10:1 Product Managers: Oversubscribed, Overcommitted, Burning Out w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 22
  • 23. Not what we intended, but… •  Selection (hiring) focuses on SME/BA, technical skills, story writing •  Little appreciation for market-side experience •  Engineering’s belief in rational/technical customers •  Requirements are out there to be “gathered” •  No recognition of organizational blocking skills •  Short-term assignments or career path? Product Owners: Typically Under-Spec’d, Underpaid, Lacking Clout 23w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m
  • 24. Product Manager Failure Modes Product Manager fails agile team(s) when… •  Part-timer, not engaged with team(s) •  Lack of detail on stories/handwaving •  Stale backlog •  Best of intentions, but pulled in too many directions
  • 25. Product Owner Failure Modes Product Owner fails “the business” when… •  Weak on market realities: whole product, competitive dynamics, value error bars, benefits, pricing models •  Unable to hold back interrupt stream •  Confuses showcase customers with broad market
  • 26. Commercial Product Failures w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 26 Product   Backlog     Epics  &     User  Stories   Release   Backlog     Epics  &     User  Stories   Sprint   Backlog     User  Stories   Poten5ally   releasable     so8ware   So8ware   release   Accepted   story   (“DONE”)   Review   Demo,   feedback   Retrospec-ve   Process     improvement   1  day   Daily   Standup   Sprint:  1  to  3  weeks   No  changes  in  dura5on  or  goal     Release     planning   Sprint   planning   Charter   Release   Retrospec-ve   Process     improvement   N   sprints   Most  product  failures     happen  here  
  • 27. Shared PO/PDM Scope w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 27 Product   Backlog     Epics  &     User  Stories   Release   Backlog     Epics  &     User  Stories   Sprint   Backlog     User  Stories   Poten5ally   releasable     so8ware   So8ware   release   Accepted   story   (“DONE”)   Review   Demo,   feedback   Retrospec-ve   Process     improvement   1  day   Daily   Standup   Sprint:  1  to  3  weeks   No  changes  in  dura5on  or  goal     Release     planning   Sprint   planning   Charter   Release   Retrospec-ve   Process     improvement   N   sprints   product manager focus product owner focus
  • 28. Minimal PDM/PO “Organization” w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 28 VP or Founders more technical more market-focused Heroic Single Product Manager/Owner + team “management”
  • 29. Dysfunctional Product Organization w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 29 VP Eng Product Owners + team more technical more market-focused VP Marketing “management” Product Managers
  • 30. PDM/PO Organizational Map: Product Peers w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 30 PDM Director/ Product Strategist GM / VP Eng / VP Products / CPO more technical more market-focused “management”
  • 31. PDM/PO Organizational Map: Market Mentoring w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m 31 GM / VP Eng / VP Products / CPO more technical more market-focused Product Owner + team Senior Product Manager “management”
  • 32. •  Product management scope includes market success as well as technical delivery •  Agile stretches/stresses commercial product organizations •  Teaming, collaboration and skills more important than titles •  Find balance among collaboration, deflection, buffering, interrupts Agile Product Take-Aways 32w w w . M I R O N O V . c o m
  • 33. CONTACT Rich Mironov, CEO Mironov Consulting 233 Franklin St, Suite #308 San Francisco, CA 94102 RichMironov   @RichMironov Rich@Mironov.com   +1-­‐650-­‐315-­‐7394