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BoS Product Day:
Incompatible World Views
Rich Mironov
Business of Software
12 October 2022
• Software product management since 1988
• Product leader since 1991
• 8 full-time leadership roles (VP, CPO, CEO)
• 6 Silicon Valley startups
• 13 interim VP Product (“smokejumper”) roles
• Writer, mentor, organizational thinker
• Founded Product Camp
About Rich
@RichMironov @BoSConference
• Focus on individual customers/deals: one at a time
• WHO: Enterprise Sales, Implementation and Support Teams
• Measured on deal revenue, fastest implementation/fix
• Focus on aggregate impact of features and system
• WHO: Enterprise Product, Engineering and Design
• Measured on -ilities, total adoption, company revenue, time-to-value
• Different metrics, considerations, timeframes
Two Fundamentally Different Viewpoints
@RichMironov @BoSConference
• Enterprise Sales
• Independent transactions: close then move on
• Fit product to customer, expect unique requests
• Customers know (say) what they need
• Enterprise Implementation
• Standard product is rarely complete enough
• Find fastest path to production system
• On completion, move to next project
(software will keep working)
Sequential, Separable, Completable
@RichMironov @BoSConference
• “No white space/slack in Engineering”
• “Less important than already committed/
announced roadmap items”
• “The product wasn’t designed to do that”
• “It probably won’t work /
customers will be unhappy later”
• “Incurs major technical debt”
• “We have to support that forever”
Arguments That We Usually Ignore
@RichMironov @BoSConference
• Product
• Always-limited engineering: address largest number of customers/users
• Faster company-wide revenue velocity vs. single deals
• Every one-off or special displaces planned features
• Customers usually misunderstand problems/solutions
• Engineering/Design
• Every new feature increases supported code base,
makes app more complexity, reduces ease of use
• No product is ever “finished:” must support forever
• Architectures designed for specific purposes
Continuous, Cumulative, Long-Lived
@RichMironov @BoSConference
• “This is a huge revenue opportunity”
• “There are lots of other customers who will want this”
• “It can’t be that hard to implement /
We can put it into next week’s sprint”
• “We can solve with special pricing”
• “They won’t really use that feature”
• “We won’t need ongoing support"
Arguments That We Usually Ignore
@RichMironov @BoSConference
• Frictionless, turnkey SaaS worth 6x-15x revenue
• Priced for customer-perceived value (not cost)
• “Build once, sell many” with >90% margins
• As few touches as possible, no specials
• Professional services/custom dev’t worth <1x revenue
• Eventually compete on cost
• Need continuing stream of projects
• Little actual re-use across teams, projects
Investor View
@RichMironov @BoSConference
(B2B) Software Investment Portfolio
@RichMironov @BoSConference
• Fundamental challenge for B2B/enterprise SaaS
• Often (quietly) shouting past each other
• Not usually about individuals or personalities
• Long-term doesn’t bite you – until it does
• Cost of “specials” skyrockets after customer #5
• Need C-level process with long-term
scorekeeping (not owned by Sales)
• Only way to influence Sales behavior is via Sales comp
• Product companies should tightly partner
with service companies
Takeaways
@RichMironov @BoSConference
Rich Mironov
Mironov Consulting
www.mironov.com
+1-650-315-7394
rich@mironov.com
@richmironov
• Account View vs. Segment View
• Breakout Sessions
• What Did We Learn/Observe?
Breakout Session
@RichMironov @BoSConference
• If you self-identify as account-focused…
• Sales, Implementation, Support, maybe Acct-Based Marketing, CEO
• Assigned to Group 1 / Script 1
• Link in chat window
• If you self-identify as cumulative focus
• Product Management, Engineering, Growth Marketing, maybe Finance
• Assigned to Group 2 / Script 2
• Link in chat window
• Pair discussions: 10 minutes to agree on a recommendation
Sorting Ourselves for Breakouts
@RichMironov @BoSConference
• Who got to an agreement?
• What did you notice?
• Similar conversations at your company?
How are they resolved?
• Takeaways?
Sharing
@RichMironov @BoSConference
“Everyone sees the
world this way”
-or-
Where you stand depends
on where you sit
@RichMironov @BoSConference
Rich Mironov
Mironov Consulting
www.mironov.com
+1-650-315-7394
rich@mironov.com
@richmironov

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BoSON22 | Rich Mironov | Resolving Incompatible World Views - Slides.pdf

  • 1. BoS Product Day: Incompatible World Views Rich Mironov Business of Software 12 October 2022
  • 2. • Software product management since 1988 • Product leader since 1991 • 8 full-time leadership roles (VP, CPO, CEO) • 6 Silicon Valley startups • 13 interim VP Product (“smokejumper”) roles • Writer, mentor, organizational thinker • Founded Product Camp About Rich @RichMironov @BoSConference
  • 3. • Focus on individual customers/deals: one at a time • WHO: Enterprise Sales, Implementation and Support Teams • Measured on deal revenue, fastest implementation/fix • Focus on aggregate impact of features and system • WHO: Enterprise Product, Engineering and Design • Measured on -ilities, total adoption, company revenue, time-to-value • Different metrics, considerations, timeframes Two Fundamentally Different Viewpoints @RichMironov @BoSConference
  • 4. • Enterprise Sales • Independent transactions: close then move on • Fit product to customer, expect unique requests • Customers know (say) what they need • Enterprise Implementation • Standard product is rarely complete enough • Find fastest path to production system • On completion, move to next project (software will keep working) Sequential, Separable, Completable @RichMironov @BoSConference
  • 5. • “No white space/slack in Engineering” • “Less important than already committed/ announced roadmap items” • “The product wasn’t designed to do that” • “It probably won’t work / customers will be unhappy later” • “Incurs major technical debt” • “We have to support that forever” Arguments That We Usually Ignore @RichMironov @BoSConference
  • 6. • Product • Always-limited engineering: address largest number of customers/users • Faster company-wide revenue velocity vs. single deals • Every one-off or special displaces planned features • Customers usually misunderstand problems/solutions • Engineering/Design • Every new feature increases supported code base, makes app more complexity, reduces ease of use • No product is ever “finished:” must support forever • Architectures designed for specific purposes Continuous, Cumulative, Long-Lived @RichMironov @BoSConference
  • 7. • “This is a huge revenue opportunity” • “There are lots of other customers who will want this” • “It can’t be that hard to implement / We can put it into next week’s sprint” • “We can solve with special pricing” • “They won’t really use that feature” • “We won’t need ongoing support" Arguments That We Usually Ignore @RichMironov @BoSConference
  • 8. • Frictionless, turnkey SaaS worth 6x-15x revenue • Priced for customer-perceived value (not cost) • “Build once, sell many” with >90% margins • As few touches as possible, no specials • Professional services/custom dev’t worth <1x revenue • Eventually compete on cost • Need continuing stream of projects • Little actual re-use across teams, projects Investor View @RichMironov @BoSConference
  • 9. (B2B) Software Investment Portfolio @RichMironov @BoSConference
  • 10. • Fundamental challenge for B2B/enterprise SaaS • Often (quietly) shouting past each other • Not usually about individuals or personalities • Long-term doesn’t bite you – until it does • Cost of “specials” skyrockets after customer #5 • Need C-level process with long-term scorekeeping (not owned by Sales) • Only way to influence Sales behavior is via Sales comp • Product companies should tightly partner with service companies Takeaways @RichMironov @BoSConference
  • 12. • Account View vs. Segment View • Breakout Sessions • What Did We Learn/Observe? Breakout Session @RichMironov @BoSConference
  • 13. • If you self-identify as account-focused… • Sales, Implementation, Support, maybe Acct-Based Marketing, CEO • Assigned to Group 1 / Script 1 • Link in chat window • If you self-identify as cumulative focus • Product Management, Engineering, Growth Marketing, maybe Finance • Assigned to Group 2 / Script 2 • Link in chat window • Pair discussions: 10 minutes to agree on a recommendation Sorting Ourselves for Breakouts @RichMironov @BoSConference
  • 14. • Who got to an agreement? • What did you notice? • Similar conversations at your company? How are they resolved? • Takeaways? Sharing @RichMironov @BoSConference
  • 15. “Everyone sees the world this way” -or- Where you stand depends on where you sit @RichMironov @BoSConference