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The Lie of a Benevolent Dictator; the Truth of a Working Democratic Meritocracy

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Keynote at OpenStackSV's inaugural event. Essentially a call to arms to fix the missing "product leadership gap" that is clearly causing drag on the project(s).

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The Lie of a Benevolent Dictator; the Truth of a Working Democratic Meritocracy

  1. 1. The Lie of The Benevolent Dictator The Truth of a Democratic Meritocracy! Randy Bias, CEO openstacksv.com SEPTEMBER 2014
  2. 2. Do we need a benevolent dictator? SEPTEMBER 2014 Page 2
  3. 3. OpenStack *has* a leadership, or at least governance/ management structure SEPTEMBER 2014 Page 3
  4. 4. Plat. Gold Ind. PTLs Ind. SEPTEMBER 2014 Page 4 Board Foundation TC Developer Community ED Rel Mgr Ind. Corp. Subcommittees • legal • finance • DefCore • etc. User Committee • nascent • user survey RM volunteer elected appointed hired Strategic Business Direction Tactical Software Dev Life Cycle
  5. 5. But is it the right kind of leadership? SEPTEMBER 2014 Page 5
  6. 6. Does OpenStack have a product vision and product strategy? SEPTEMBER 2014 Page 6
  7. 7. Does OpenStack have a product vision and product strategy? SEPTEMBER 2014 Page NO! 6
  8. 8. The Gap Strategic Business Direction Tactical Software Dev Life Cycle Strategic Product Vision & Direction? No one owns!! SEPTEMBER 2014 Page 7 Board TC
  9. 9. “product strategy” for open source project(s) ? SEPTEMBER 2014 Page 8
  10. 10. Product strategy and vision will not “emerge” from a group SEPTEMBER 2014 Page 9
  11. 11. SEPTEMBER 2014 Page 10
  12. 12. SEPTEMBER 2014 Page 11
  13. 13. We are a democratic meritocracy SEPTEMBER 2014 Page 11
  14. 14. We are a democratic meritocracy We are not the Linux community SEPTEMBER 2014 Page 11
  15. 15. We are a democratic meritocracy We are not the Linux community We don’t need a dictator, but we do need product leadership SEPTEMBER 2014 Page 11
  16. 16. Some Product Leadership Requirements not a complete list, OK? SEPTEMBER 2014 Page 12
  17. 17. • OpenStack is NOT a Product, BUT … It Must Be Managed Like One • Long term vision + long term prioritization & planning • Corporate independence • Work for the community: developers, operators, and end-users • Focus on end-user needs and requirements • Working with the user committee, obviously… • Ability to work closely with the Board and the TC SEPTEMBER 2014 Page • Priority setting, vision, etc. • Architectural oversight and leadership 13 Some Product Leadership Requirements
  18. 18. What does AWS do? SEPTEMBER 2014 Page 14
  19. 19. • Small architecture review board • Werner Vogels, James Hamilton, etc. • Product management function • Team of product managers per product line SEPTEMBER 2014 Page 15 What does Amazon do for product leadership?
  20. 20. What *might* we do? SEPTEMBER 2014 Page 16
  21. 21. • Arch Review Board (ARB) • Elected for 2-4 years • Small # of seats • Wide set of domain expertise • Remit is: • work with TC on BP/Specs • help PMs validate priority SEPTEMBER 2014 Page 17 What could we do? (Just a SUGGESTION) • Product Management (PM) • Not elected • 1+ per program • Specific domain expertise • Work for the Foundation • Annual 360° feedback • Remit is: • priority setting & negotiation
  22. 22. Plat. Gold Ind. PTLs Ind. SEPTEMBER 2014 Page Prod. Mgrs Foundation 18 Board TC Developer Community ED Rel Mgr Ind. Corp. Subcommittees • legal • finance • DefCore • etc. User Committee • nascent • user survey volunteer elected appointed hired Strategic Business Direction Tactical Software Dev Life Cycle ARB • Shared chair? • Elected PTL seat? • Independents • Long term Architects
  23. 23. SEPTEMBER 2014 Page 19
  24. 24. Product leadership the issue; NOT dictatorship SEPTEMBER 2014 Page 19
  25. 25. Product leadership the issue; NOT dictatorship Product leadership cannot be emergent SEPTEMBER 2014 Page 19
  26. 26. Product leadership the issue; NOT dictatorship Product leadership cannot be emergent Many paths forward; *all* require creating ownership SEPTEMBER 2014 Page 19
  27. 27. Product leadership the issue; NOT dictatorship Product leadership cannot be emergent Many paths forward; *all* require creating ownership Collective responsibility to fix this SEPTEMBER 2014 Page 19
  28. 28. Product leadership the issue; NOT dictatorship Product leadership cannot be emergent Many paths forward; *all* require creating ownership Collective responsibility to fix this Failure to fix may result in insurmountable challenges SEPTEMBER 2014 Page 19
  29. 29. Thank you @randybias SEPTEMBER 2014 Page 20

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