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Prioritization 301: An Advanced Roadmapping Class for Product People

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Veteran Product Person Bruce McCarthy's funny and insightful presentation on how to make fanboys out of all your stakeholders by using objective criteria to prioritize your requirements and drive consensus.

As seen at ProductCamp Boston, June 2012.

Visit www.reqqs.com/resources for a Scorecard template in Excel and information on Reqqs - The Smart Roadmap Tool for Product People.

Published in: Technology, Business
  • Njce! Thanks for sharing.
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  • Thank you.
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  • Thanks Bruce - great slide deck and well presented
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  • @JamesBoutcher Good question! Certainty is both your confidence in your goal scores and your effort scores. Of course sometimes you are very certain of one but not the other. In that case, you can pick a middle value for Certainty. If this is a common occurrence for you, it would certainly be possible to modify the formula to add a Certainty for each. It's important to remember here, though, that you are not trying to perfectly model reality with math. That is an impossible dream and pursuing it creates more work than it is worth. You are just trying to bring out your highest priority items. And if your certainty about any of your scores is low, that should reduce the priority.
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  • What is the 'certainty' value representing for each item? How certain you are that it provides that value, or how certain you are that you can be successful delivering that feature, or.. something else?
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Prioritization 301: An Advanced Roadmapping Class for Product People

  1. 1. Prioritization 301 Advanced Roadmapping Class Bruce McCarthy Chief Product Person, Reqqs bruce@reqqs.com www.reqqs.com @d8a_driven
  2. 2. Why roadmaps matter
  3. 3. R
  4. 4. “Did [Previous PM] send you his spreadsheet of [5 trillion un- prioritized] feature requests?” - VP Product Management
  5. 5. “We need this to close[big deal] this quarter!” - Key Sales Person
  6. 6. “37% of our Support calls are about [oldest, hairiest part of the code]. Can’t we fix it?” - Support Manager
  7. 7. “[Shiny tech thing] will make[your top priority] much easier!” - Tech Lead
  8. 8. “[Previously irrelevant competitor]just shipped [shiny feature]. How are we going to leapfrog them?” - VP Marketing
  9. 9. “We gotta drop everything and work on [meaningless buzzword]. It’s gonna be huge!” - VP Sales
  10. 10. “If you don’t support [obscureplatform] I can’t buy your stuff.” - Key Customer CTO
  11. 11. “Why would anybody schedule [easyfeature] before [hard feature]? Who approved that [expletive] idea?” - CEO
  12. 12. “What’s your business case for [CEO’s pet project]? When do we make money?” - CFO
  13. 13. “You can’t add work withoutsubtracting something? What, is your whole team lazy?” - CEO
  14. 14. Roadmap Process1. Set Goals2. Collect Ideas3. Set Priorities4. Get Buy-in5. Define Releases6. Communicate Roadmap7. Build Product8. Launch Product9. Repeat
  15. 15. Roadmap Process1. Set Goals2. Collect Ideas Today’s3. Set Priorities focus4. Get Buy-in5. Define Releases6. Communicate Roadmap7. Build Product8. Launch Product9. Repeat
  16. 16. Prioritization
  17. 17. PrioritizationImportant Basis of your roadmap Can determine success Inspires confidence Grooms your backlog Key PM skill
  18. 18. PrioritizationImportant Hard Basis of your roadmap Big backlogs Can determine success Competing goals Inspires confidence Multiple stakeholders Grooms your backlog Vocal customers Key PM skill Dependencies Risks
  19. 19. Methods I Don’t Recommend
  20. 20. Methods I Don’t Recommend
  21. 21. Methods I Don’t RecommendEngineer How to build the perfect solution no one will buy
  22. 22. Methods I Don’t RecommendEngineer How to build the perfect solution no one will buy CEO How to build a buzzword
  23. 23. Methods I Don’t RecommendEngineer How to build the perfect solution no one will buy CEO How to build a buzzword Sales How to never finish anything (and lose your devs)
  24. 24. Methods I Don’t RecommendEngineer How to build the perfect solution no one will buy CEO How to build a buzzword Sales How to never finish anything (and lose your devs) PM How long can you tread water?
  25. 25. Methods I Don’t RecommendEngineer How to build the perfect solution no one will buy CEO How to build a buzzword Sales How to never finish anything (and lose your devs) PM How long can you tread water?Customer How to stop growing
  26. 26. Methods I Don’t RecommendEngineer How to build the perfect solution no one will buy CEO How to build a buzzword Sales How to never finish anything (and lose your devs) PM How long can you tread water?Customer How to stop growingAnalyst How to miss the market window
  27. 27. Math makes (almost) everything better
  28. 28. Value / Effort = Priority
  29. 29. HighValue Low High Low Effort
  30. 30. HighValue Low High Low Effort
  31. 31. Value / Effort = Priority Value = Expected Contribution to Defined Goals
  32. 32. Typical Goals
  33. 33. Typical GoalsGrow the user base
  34. 34. Typical GoalsGrow the user baseIncrease customer satisfaction
  35. 35. Typical GoalsGrow the user baseIncrease customer satisfactionImprove performance
  36. 36. Typical GoalsGrow the user baseIncrease customer satisfactionImprove performanceIncrease referrals
  37. 37. Typical GoalsGrow the user baseIncrease customer satisfactionImprove performanceIncrease referralsValidated learning
  38. 38. Typical GoalsGrow the user baseIncrease customer satisfactionImprove performanceIncrease referralsValidated learningIncrease revenue this year
  39. 39. Typical GoalsGrow the user baseIncrease customer satisfactionImprove performanceIncrease referralsValidated learningIncrease revenue this yearTransformation (revenue in future years)
  40. 40. Typical GoalsGrow the user baseIncrease customer satisfactionImprove performanceIncrease referralsValidated learningIncrease revenue this yearTransformation (revenue in future years)Generate buzz
  41. 41. Value / Effort = Priority
  42. 42. Value / Effort = Priority Value = V1+V2+V3...
  43. 43. Value / Effort = Priority
  44. 44. Value / Effort = Priority (V1+V2+V3) / (E1+E2) x Certainty = P
  45. 45. Contribution
  46. 46. ContributionExact numbers
  47. 47. ContributionExact numbers
  48. 48. ContributionExact numbers1-10
  49. 49. ContributionExact numbers1-101-100
  50. 50. ContributionExact numbers1-101-100Fibonacci
  51. 51. ContributionExact numbers1-101-100Fibonacci1 to 5 stars
  52. 52. ContributionExact numbers1-101-100Fibonacci1 to 5 stars0,1,2
  53. 53. ContributionExact numbers1-101-100Fibonacci1 to 5 stars0,1,2
  54. 54. Feature V1 V2 E Raw C Score A 1 1 2 1 75% 0.75 B 1 0 2 0.5 90% 0.45 C 2 -1 1 1 40% 0.4
  55. 55. (V1+V2)/E = RawFeature V1 V2 E Raw C Score A 1 1 2 1 75% 0.75 B 1 0 2 0.5 90% 0.45 C 2 -1 1 1 40% 0.4
  56. 56. Feature V1 V2 E Raw C Score A 1 1 2 1 75% 0.75 B 1 0 2 0.5 90% 0.45 C 2 -1 1 1 40% 0.4
  57. 57. (V1+V2)/E x C = ScoreFeature V1 V2 E Raw C Score A 1 1 2 1 75% 0.75 B 1 0 2 0.5 90% 0.45 C 2 -1 1 1 40% 0.4
  58. 58. Feature V1 V2 E Raw C Score A 1 1 2 1 75% 0.75 B 1 0 2 0.5 90% 0.45 C 2 -1 1 1 40% 0.4
  59. 59. Are We There Yet?
  60. 60. Roadmap Process1. Set Goals2. Collect Ideas3. Set Priorities4. Get Buy-in5. Define Releases6. Communicate Roadmap7. Build Product8. Launch Product9. Repeat
  61. 61. Roadmap Process1. Set Goals2. Collect Ideas3. Set Priorities w/o this, you4. Get Buy-in are f***ed5. Define Releases6. Communicate Roadmap7. Build Product8. Launch Product9. Repeat
  62. 62. Shuttle Diplomacy “I’ve got a draft set ofpriorities. Would you help me refine it?”
  63. 63. Collaboration“I’ll present our prioritiesto the executive team on Friday”
  64. 64. Feature V1 V2 E Raw C Score  1 1 2 1 75% 0.75 ? 1 0 2 0.5 90% 0.45  2 -1 1 1 40% 0.4
  65. 65. Use Tools(Don’t let them use you.)
  66. 66. Discussion
  67. 67. For Slides & Excel Template Bruce McCarthy Chief Product Person, Reqqs bruce@reqqs.com www.reqqs.com/resources @d8a_driven

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