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Product Tank Dublin: Scaling Agile Product Models


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"Product Managers, Product Owners, Scalable Agile Product Models:" what do the first few scale-ups of product management look like, from one end-to-end PM to several to a multi-tier model? And what are some of the challenges/pitfalls?

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Product Tank Dublin: Scaling Agile Product Models

  1. 1. Product Managers, Product Owners, Scalable Agile Product Models Rich Mironov April 5, 2017 Product Tank Dublin 1w w w . M i r o n o v . c o m
  2. 2. • Veteran product manager/exec/strategist • Organizing agile product organizations • Smokejumper VP Products • HP, Tandem, Sybase, 6 B2B startups as “product guy” or CEO • The Art of Product Management • Founded Product Camp, blog since 2002 About Rich Mironov 2w w w . M i r o n o v . c o m
  3. 3. • Unhelpful: “We’ve created product owners based on scrum definitions. How does our business fit in? • Backward: “We hired both product managers and product owners. How do we divide responsibilities and ship successful products?” • Better: “What are the essential Jobs To Be Done for product folks, and how can we help them succeed?” Framing the Right Question 3w w w . M i r o n o v . c o m
  4. 4. • Customers/user understand their problems • Customers (usually) mis-design solutions to their problems • Customers and sales channels generalize every complaint into universal market requirement • Development will build what we tell them to build • …If we don’t include them in problem/solution framing Important Constraints (How Real World Works) 4w w w . M i r o n o v . c o m
  5. 5. 1. Understand opportunities to deliver customer value • Problems before solutions across many customers/users 2. Validate; estimate value and solution cost; iterate • Collaboratively with development, UX and customers 3. Prioritize too many opportunities 4. Make time/feature/quality trade-offs Product Management Jobs To Be Done 5w w w . M i r o n o v . c o m
  6. 6. Different organizations measure success differently • Product companies: total revenue or profitability • Enlightened Internal IT: actual cost savings or increased revenue • Benighted Internal IT: on time, on budget, on spec • Assumes we asked for right things, in right order, which had forecasted impact Scorekeeping Matters 6w w w . M i r o n o v . c o m
  7. 7. There’s nothing more wasteful than brilliantly engineering a product (project) that doesn’t matter. w w w . M i r o n o v . c o m 7
  8. 8. Slicing the Problem: Small Product at Product Company (1) 8w w w . M i r o n o v . c o m One development team: transactions, reporting, infra… Development (massively simplified) JTBD/segments (massively simplified) End-to-end product manager • Does own discovery/interviews • Opportunities, priorities, trade-offs • Market outcomes ($, €, £, ¥)
  9. 9. Slicing the Problem: Mid-Sized Product at Product Company (2) 9w w w . M i r o n o v . c o m Development (massively simplified) JTBD/segments (massively simplified) Several end-to-end product managers Tech value stream: DB, security, infra Tech value stream: core transactions Tech value stream: Reporting, archiving
  10. 10. Slicing the Problem: Very Large Product at Product Company (3) 10w w w . M i r o n o v . c o m … JTBD/segments (massively simplified) “technical” product managers DB, security Reporting partner APIs Admin/LDAP Development (massively simplified) market/segment managers Core transactions
  11. 11. • No single (technical) product manager delivers value • But still need to manage single backlog/priority per team • Market/segment managers have conflicting priorities: influencers/lobbyists, not deciders • Segments have different “mix” of needs • Technical product managers lose touch with real users • Requires portfolio-level priorities, solution scope, architecture, UX, pricing (value) • Tendency to allocate teams entirely to market initiatives • “Postpone” quality, tech debt, research à threadbare feature factory • Stop investing in core capabilities, and usability • Little decision scope of product managers Scale-Up Challenges for Large Products 11w w w . M i r o n o v . c o m
  12. 12. One Option: Team-Level Budgeting 12w w w . M i r o n o v . c o m Averaged across a quarter… for example... • 50-60% of team points against global initiatives • 20% against local capabilities & features • Requires that product managers stay in close touch with users • 20% against quality, automation, DevOps • May delegate decisions on this to team
  13. 13. Very similar challenges: • Budget approvals rarely align with actual value • Demands arrive as solutions (not problems), as defined by less-technical Business Unit owner or lead user • Lead user often not representative of user base Does product owner have right/power to • Confirm/validate problem, then solution? • Reassess internal savings, adoption, rollout, impact? • Set/change team priorities? What About Product Owners in IT Organizations? 13w w w . M i r o n o v . c o m
  14. 14. 1. Understand user base, opportunities for value • Problems, then solutions 2. Validate, estimate value and solution cost, iterate • Collaborate with development, design and multiple 3. Prioritize (push) for what matters most 4. Ask (push) for outcome metrics, measurement 5. Celebrate ship dates and user/customer wins Best (Empowered) IT Product Owners Look Like Product Managers 14w w w . M i r o n o v . c o m
  15. 15. CONTACT Rich Mironov, CEO Mironov Consulting 233 Franklin St, Suite #308 San Francisco, CA 94102 RichMironov @RichMironov +1-650-315-7394 15