TPMAFOCUSWhat is the TPMA?"Creating Insight throughShared Knowledge"Founded in March 2001,the Toronto Product Man-agement Association isa non-profit organizationformed to create an en-vironment that facilitateslearning, mentoring, & net-working opportunities.Visit: www.TPMA.caTHIS EDITION:Snapshot 2ProductCamp 2013 2Product goes Splat 3Rev, Reset, Relaunch 5Three Positives 8Crowd Quotables 8Things Gone Awry 9CoolTools 10Issue #12: 2Q 2013Toronto ProductManagementAssociationKEY DATES:Learnings from StartupProduct Management- Tue, Apr 30th6:30pm- Metro Hall, 55 John St.Using MarketingAutomation Platforms- Tue, May 28th6:30pm- Metro Hall, 55 John St.Summer Social !!!- Tue, Jun 11th6:30pm- Metro Hall, 55 John St.Artwork: Billy F. AlexanderWhenProduct GoesSPLAT!
TPMAProductCamp Toronto Returns!On Saturday, July 20, 2013 par-ticipants from around the GreaterToronto Area will gather for the 6th an-nual ProductCamp Toronto to learn from,teach to, and network with professionalsinvolved in Product Management, Mar-keting, and Development.The first ProductCamp was held on aSaturday in March, 2008 in MountainView, California. News about the uncon-ference format with no registration fee,no agenda and no selling spread quicklyand about 170 people showed up to dis-cuss topics of interest to product manag-ers, product marketers and other relatedroles.Launched in 2008, the Toronto eventwas an early pioneer in the Product-Camp community and the first of its kindin Canada. Since then, ProductCampshave been growing in popularity and arenow held all across the United States,Canada and around the world. Partici-pants in Pro-d u c t C a m p sare helping tosupport a col-laborative, us-er-organized“ u n - c o n f e r -ence”, focusedon softwareproduct mar-keting andproduct man-agement.At a Product-Camp, thereare no passive“attendees”. In-stead, every-one is referredto as a “par-ticipant” and expected to contribute insome way whether that is presenting orfacilitating a session, coordinating spon-sors, managing the venue, volunteeringfor setup and teardown, or sitting on adiscussion panel. Information sharing isexpected and encouraged. Everyone isurged to share information and experi-ences, both live and after the event, viablogging, photo sharing, social book-marking, tweeting, and wiki postings.This open encouragement is in deliber-ate contrast to the “off-the-record” and“no recording” rules at many conferences.ProductCamp Toronto 2013 is beingheld on Saturday July 20, 2013 at theTed Rogers School of Management,Ryerson University (55 Dundas StreetWest, Toronto, ON). Registrations andadditional information is online at www.productcamptoronto.wordpress.com .--- Lee GarrisonSNAPSHOTCharles DimovPresident@cdimovSplat edition seems a bit alarmist.Hopefully it caught your attention.,Maybe it even made you think about thetime you had to live through a troublingtime with your own product. Perhapsyou are just grateful that it has not hap-pened to you...yet. Either way, as prod-uct and marketing managers we need tobe prepared, and the articles come fromlocal talent who have been through it,and survived. Learn well.A program that boomed with successwas the TPMA mentorship program.June marks the close of this year’s pro-gram. Thanks to so many who engagedwith heart, and to those willing to give oftheir precious time, to help with wisdomand sage advice. But keep heart, as wewill start again in September.June also brings our annual SummerSocial, where I hope to share a drinkwith you. It is a chance for guests andmembers to get together, network, sharea story and take a moment to reflect onthe season. Best are the many plansthat start with, “Charles, you know whatyou need to do for next year is ... ... ...”That will bring us to July, with anotherfun-filled ProductCamp Toronto. Tellyour friends, coworkers and colleagues.ProductCamp is where we discuss thelatest concepts, tools, techniques andtips. This is the one event you really can-not miss.See you there!
TPMAWhen your product goes SPLAT!(continued on page 4)Our responsibility as product managersrequires us to contend with more thanjust successful executions of productplans. In unforeseen circumstances,such as those created by our competi-tors, it may require us to challenge ourcapabilities and the integrity of our entiredevelopment ecosystem.Operating with the belief that our design,development or deployment systems areinherently competitive and not subject tothe infallibility of failure, we overlook ourrole as the owners of its success.In the era of intense competition duringthe hyper growth of the consumer com-puter space, the development of techni-cal specifications were often led by thedesign ideal of theoretical capabilities.One such example involved the intro-duction of 3D visualization to the digitalgaming space.In the fall of 1996, a leading providerof gaming hardware and my employer,released a new semiconductor archi-tecture that included the fundamentalcomponents of 3D graphics capabilities.These included perspective correction,texture filtering, mip-mapping, Gouraudshading, Z-buffering and alpha-blendingto immerse game players in a highly re-alistic 3D world.Perspective correct texturing was a cru-cial capability that made possible theclaim of generating true 3D visualization.Perspective correction accounts for thevertices positions in 3D space, ratherthan simply interpolating a 2D triangle.This achieves the correct visual effect,but it is slower to calculate.Instead of interpolating the texture co-ordinates directly, the coordinates aredivided by their depth (relative to theviewer), and the reciprocal of the depthvalue is also interpolated and used to re-cover the perspective-correct coordinate.Perspective correct mapping interpo-lates after dividing by depth , then usesits interpolated reciprocal to recover thecorrect coordinate:Weeks after the product’s introduction, acompetitor chose to reduce risk in theirbrand equity and market share positionby communicating to the media and toTier 1 B2B customers that my compa-ny’s product lacked the aforementionednew capability and that it was actuallyonly a modified version of the technol-ogy in previous products. Having invest-ed heavily in an architecture that wouldultimately spawn a technology genera-tion’s worth of success, the gauntlet wasthrown.Upon being notified by a near panickedPR manager of the impending mediafirestorm, I had multiple decisions tomake immediately.First: determine my situational roleKnowing that the commercial success ofthe product was my ultimate goal, thatan attitude of “making it happen” are keyattributes for any product manager andthat I had legitimate authority to carryout my function, it was my responsibilityto resolve the challenge and do so usingall of my interpersonal skills, influenceand persuasion.My role as the Product Manager requiredme to work with others to plan and spec-ify a product in line with the company’slong term strategic plan in accordance tomeet market needs and within the scopeand capabilities of the company.Had we done so? The media and ourmajor customers were about to ask thatquestion.• Were future technology develop-ments, competitor products and thechanging requirements of industrycertification organizations taken intoaccount?• Was the product creation processcorrectly managed by selecting theright mix of individuals in the multidisciplinary business team?• Were the sales support materi-als (presentations, on-line content,technical data sheets etc.) vettedcorrectly?• Would our technology roadmaps forthe product portfolio be exposed un-der a legal challenge?• Did we develop and monitor criticalsuccess factors for the product inline with the product business plan?As the product manager and championof the product and as the manager ofthe business in its own right, I needed totake immediate action.I was given the appropriate responsi-bilities, accountabilities and command toaccess the appropriate knowledge baseand did I have the authority to make stra-tegic decisions?Second: respond to this competitivethreat as a crisis• Analyze and understand eventswhich might lead to crisis and uncer-tainty in the organization.• Respond with effective coordinationamongst the departments to over-come emergency situations.• Communicate effectively with eachother and try our level best to over-come tough times.
TPMAWhen Product goes SPLAT(from pg 3)• At the time of crisis the managementshould be in regular touch with theemployees, external clients, stakeholders as well as media.Critical Actions Required:1. The creation of a task force thatincluded the most senior peoplewhose decisions comprised the ac-complishments in the developmentand release of the product.2. Analysis of the events which led tothis crisis and the management ofpotential uncertainty in the organiza-tion that could not be allowed.3. A critical assessment of the ProductManagement process.Product Initiation Phase:Did the Product Management, En-gineering and Operations submit ajoint request for a new product thatmet the definition of 3D for gamingapplications?Feasibility Phase:Was the technical evaluation by theEngineering team successful andapproved?Design and Plan Phase:Was the documentation, such as theMRD, Technical Specifications andDesign Specifications, vetted by oth-er groups, including Operations, QA,and Customer Care, in order to gen-erate function specific procedures?Development Phase:Did other functional groups continuepreparatory work for the Testing andIntroduction Phases, including Cus-tomer Care, Training, Vendor andClient management?Testing Phase:Was the decision gate based on theQA Test Results, Operations TestResults, Field Verification, ChangeRequests and Business Needs?Product Launch Phase:Was the coordination of the deploy-ment enabled by Operations withsupporting organizations and pro-cesses to maintain the product?Operation Phase:Was the organization managingthe product, tracking problems andbugs, and responding to customerand media issues regarding theproduct in a timely and cost effec-tive manner?4. Coordination of all departments toovercome the emergency situation.Including the key engineering, qual-ity assurance, purchasing, manu-facturing, technology analysts, mar-keting communications, media andinvestor relations, legal counsel, fi-nance and executive staff that wereresponsible for the creation and de-ployment of the product.5. Management of focal communica-tions with every team member andthe centralization of all content.6. A corporate communication strategythat spoke with one voice and thatdistributed information without biasThe GoalMeeting of three key objectives and cor-porate priorities that were the defininglandscape upon which all company de-cisions were made.1. Our company, mission and brandwere inseparable - we were the in-dustry leader, its greatest supporterand the innovator that others fol-lowed.2. Providing immediate and sustain-able value to our customers andtreating each one with respect de-fined us. This drove continual optimi-zation and best practices throughoutthe organization.3. Integrity mattered.Day 1:Upon notification of the competitor’snegative messaging, a short email wassent to the C-level office. It read, in part“Competitor X has today published infor-mation claiming that our newly launchedproduct’s capabilities do not provide thetechnical definition of 3D visualization. Ateam is being assembled immediately(continued on page 6)SOFTWARESCORECARDWhat’s stopping you from gettingAmazing Software out the door?Find out with themacadamian.comInnovationCompelling DesignUsabilityQualityAgilitySpeedInnovationCompelling DesignUsabilityQualityAgilitySpeed
TPMAReview, Reset, RelaunchMy first sales job ever was standingin the cold, my father at my side,selling Christmas trees for the local CubScout troop. It was a good gig, even if itdidn’t pay and the ends of my toes near-ly froze off by the end of the night.As we would get closer to Christmasthere would always be a few trees thatjust would not sell. Their trunks would bebent or there would be a broken branchor two or a big bare section of the tree.Sooner or later, after many attemptsto find the trees a home, they wouldbe set in the “reject pile”.This is when I was taught by myfather, that there was no suchthing as a dead product. It wasoften just about packaging. Whenthere was a lull in the customertraffic, my father would ask me togo to the “reject pile” and pull out atree so we could see what we coulddo with it. Often those crooked 7 foottrees could be turned into a perfect 4foot tree and a bunch of pine bows fordecorating the mantle.Turning “rejected” products into new rev-enue streams is not always an easy task.It requires a long hard look at all of theelements of the marketing mix to seewhat has gone wrong, and then someinnovative rethinking to set things right.Product needs a Makeover?There are many signs that a currentproduct is a candidate for a relaunch,Sales below target by over 25%When sales are under expectations by5% to 25%, the variations can often beexplained by stagnant market conditionsor slow pick up of the sales organization.This can be considered a normal butslow introduction ramp, and can oftenbe corrected by a simple promotionalpush /campaign.But when sales are more than 30% offtargets for more than 4-6 months, morethan likely you have a candidate for arelaunch.Product failures up 20%Every product has a burn in period in thefield. Installers and users have to gainexperience and if the product is signifi-cantly different or the features are com-plex, there will be field errors and tickets.But, if these tickets continue to climb inoccurrence or severity, you have a prob-lem that needs more than timet o solve.R e - m e m -ber to listen to social mediafeedback here as well. Your PR expertcan help you monitor the ongoing chat-ter of your customers. This can give youtremendous insights into the problemsthey are having with your product. Usesocial media to its advantage. Showyour customers you care and are listen-ing to their concerns. Transparency isvery important here. Remember, even ifthey don’t like your current product, theycan still like doing business with you ifyou treat them with respect and care.Sales force avoiding the product.Sales organizations are often called“coin operated”, which means that if thereis an easy dollar to be made selling thisproduct, then sales people will find outabout it and organically the sales willgrow.When a product begins to get the rep-utation as a hard sell, or a lemon withlots of after sales issues, then the salesforce will know and will avoid the product.Regular post sales polling of the salesforce is the best way to confirm your sus-picions. The challenge is separating outthe noise from the real problems.Marketing challenged finding differ-entiated messagingThis is the earliest sign that your productcould become a future reject.I strongly believe that a good productsells itself. The differentiation is clear,the value to the customer is obvious.Products don’t need to be pushed,they just need to be demo’d orshown to the right prospects.But if your product marketing teamhas a challenge finding a differen-tiated value statement then some-thing is amiss. If a product is beingreleased onto the market it needsto solve a real business problemthat is identifiable and resonateswith the customer. It also needs tosolve this business problem better thanyour competition. The differentiationshould be sustainable and quantifiable.Time for a Relaunch PlanIt’s always difficult to admit your prod-uct launch failed. But the sign of a goodproduct manager is one that comes for-ward early with the relaunch plan in handand aggressively pursues the neededchanges.Back to BasicsUnderstanding what went wrong andhow to fix it is about going back to basics.Rely on your four P analysis.Product issues:• Product software bugs• Product hardware malfunctions• Design / useability issues• Reliabiltiy• If it’s a product reliability issue,then you have to replan the prod-uct roadmap to allow for sufficienttime and resources to fix the prob-lem and completely retest. Not justa simple unit test, but a completeend to end system test to ensure(continued on page 6)Art by: Billy F. Alexander
TPMAReview, Reset, Relaunch (from pg 5)there remain no issues, evensmall ones, when the product isrereleased.Price issues:• Pricing models can lead to a failedproduct in the market• Research competitive pricing• Research buying behaviours andbudgets (capex vs opex for ex-ample)• Consider upfront vs trailing rev-enue models• Consider financing and termsPlace issues:• Consider sales enablement andtraining (perhaps your sales forcewasn’t well enough versed in theproduct)• Consider technical training• Consider user training and docu-mentationPromotion/messaging issues:• Understand the business problemyou are solving• Understand how you solve it bet-ter than your competition• Prove it – build undeniable proofpoints• Rebuild your messaging architec-ture• Conduct your 3 C analysis (Cus-tomer needs, Company Capabili-ties, Competitive positioning)• Look for the messagingwhitespace – find the differenti-ated white space where you canprove your product is better thanthe competition• Consider a relaunch campaignwith a full integrated marketingplan. Events, Analysts, Press, So-cial MediaTrust, Trust, TrustAdmitting to yourself and your manage-ment that you need to relaunch yourproduct is a hard thing to do, but evenmore difficult, but the most necessary isadmitting to your sales channels and tothe customers that you have a problem.Re-Building trust with Customers:A sound communications plan is para-mount to saving the brand, especially ifthis product failure is a headline grabber.• It’s about rebuilding the trust withyour customers and your channel.• You need to be ahead of the storyand set the tone and agenda.• It has to come from the top. Andit has to be volunteered. It can’tcome too late, or only done whenforced into a corner.• If there is product liability involved,your lawyers may be all over you.You need to listen to them, but youneed to do the right thing. It hasto feel like the right thing, it has tolook like the right thing.• You really need a PR professionalon your side to help manage this ifits newsworthyRebuilding trust with channels:Regaining the trust of your channels andrebuilding their faith in the product is thebiggest challenge.There are three T’s of building trust:1. Truth-Know the truth about what wentwrong. Only by knowing thetruth can you have confidencethat the actions taken will cor-rect the problem.2. Transparency-Share the problem and buildan action plan with your chan-nels.-Listen to how this problem af-fected their business. Makesure they feel heard and areunderstood. Help them recov-er even if it hurts.-Letting your channel talk to the de-velopers/designers.-Gain their buy-in to the new vision.Do not sell this plan to them, letthem be part of it, gain their input.3. Time-Like all relationships that havesoured the wounds will take timeto heal. Give them time. Don’t rushout with a new launch until youknow they are back on board.Ready for RelaunchSo you have managed to keep communi-cations open with your customers. Theylike how you have handled the problem.Your channels are now bought into thenew product. They have participated inthe plan, they have seen how you havegone above and beyond to ensure thisnext release is what it needs to be.It’s time to go back out to the market. It’stime to execute that relaunch plan. It’stime to tell them why your new productis better than ever and what you havelearned from the exercise and how it hasmade your product and your companybetter than ever.I think the most important thing to real-ize is that you have many “normal” touchpoints with the customer on a daily basis,but only rarely do you get the amplifica-tion of a relaunch where your customerand channel partners are really payingattention to how you do business.See the relaunch as a brand opportunityto show your customers and channelswhat a great company you are and theywill become more loyal than ever.About the AuthorWayne Seifried has over15 years of product mar-keting, product mgt andsales enablement leader-ship experience at bothfortune 500 and startup companies inthe technology market. He is a frequentspeaker at industry events on Go ToMarket and Product Marketing and En-terprise Communication Trends. Wayneis currently doing private consulting andvolunteering in the innovation commu-nity in Toronto.
. TPMA MentoringProgram - Take IIIThis season’s mentoring program has been off to anamazing start, and will wind down in June. Thank you to all 56participants. We hope you all learned and developedfrom the experience.Though we have not started the thirdprogram yet, we will run the program inSeptember 2013 through to June 2014.To partake in next year’s program, expressyour interest in an email to: email: firstname.lastname@example.org NOTE: NOT a Job Referral Service!TPMATPMA is very pleased to welcome MiaxProject Services back as a CorporateSponsor. Over the years Miax has beena strong supporter of the TPMA, andJinha Chung, CEO of Miax Inc, has beenactively involved in the product manage-ment community.Miax Project Services provides full turn-key project management solutions toclients in high tech. Miax helps clientscomplete projects on time and on bud-get by providing them with professionallytrained project managers, business ana-lysts, and subject matter experts.Our partnership is a great opportunity tostrengthen and grow a relationship be-tween our two organisations. The TPMAand Miax are both committed to helpingproduct managers and their respectivecompanies improve their effectivenessat providing services and bringing cre-ative new product offerings to market.Not only will Miax Project Services spon-sor the TPMA, they will also sponsor To-ronto ProductCamp 2013 in July of thisyear.Welcome back to Miax Project Servicesas a very supportive and well respectedCorporate Sponsor.Visit: www.miax.caand your presence at 2pm is requested.”At 2pm with the entire team assembled,the crisis management plan was pre-sented at the outset and ownership wasassigned. As the product owner, the suc-cess or failure of our corporate responsewas mine and I was empowered with theauthority to do so.Executing unbiased communicationswas paramount. Initiating a response toa crisis within a large organization makesimpossible the ability to monitor everyexecutable. Only known facts could bestated and an acknowledgement that allassumptions had potential for error wasmade. A central communication centrewas simultaneously created.Best practices would be used to createour crisis response plan and all resourc-es were applied to prove our correct un-derstanding of the competitor’s claim.Day 2:With the objective of confirming all con-clusions by day’s end, each companyfunction owner was required to presentfindings and unknowns. Throughout, theproduct management team deferred allresponsibility and assumed the role ofinformation gatherer and disseminator.A cease and desist was drafted, ap-proved and delivered to the competitor.Sales and marketing scouts accumu-lated and catalogued every known in-stance of threat to our company’s brand.Upon conclusion of all presentations andwith executive management present,the company’s position and marketingresponse were defined and approved.Day 3:All accounts and media were personallycontacted and information disprovingthe competitor’s claims was dissemi-nated. In addition, other factual errors bythe competitor were identified for inves-tigation. A team was created to analyzeall competitive specifications, productmarketing and industry recognition.A cease and desist, with this addition-al information, was delivered to thecompetitor and made public.Day 4:An engineering based FAQ where allcompetitor claims were addressed ingranular detail, was posted online anddistributed freely. Additional productmarketing information, including newand independent test reports and edito-rial reviews, were included.A statement was released on the impor-tance of delivering value to every singlecustomer and with integrity and respect.Day 5:All claims by the competitor were re-tracted and clarifications were issued.The competitor`s challenge had beenaddressed successfully.When things go SPLAT, a Product Man-ager must make key decisions. Themost strategic being the need to reaf-firm personal commitment to meet theresponsibilities with which the companyhas entrusted the product team. Suc-cess means making that trust work.When Product goes SPLAT(from pg 4)TPMA Welcomes Miaxas a Corporate Sponsor!About the AuthorAndrew Schmied has 17years of experience leadingcorporate strategy, market-ing and business develop-ment for tech. innovatorsin Asia, North America andEurope. He has launched 25+ awardwinning products and built businessesunits, startups and ecosystems for in-dustry leaders such as ATI Technologies,Advanced Micro Devices and Lucidlogix.
ProductCamp Toronto 2013Lined up. Ready to go. Now we just need that specialspark to start it all off! That spark is YOU!ProductCamp provides a spark of creativity, anopportunity to network with professionals in yourfield, and delivers on some amazing seminars,presentations, and group discussions. Keep up todate, and get involved.When: Saturday July 20th, 2013 - @ 9:00amWhere: Ryerson University, 55 Dundas St. W Ted Rogers School of Mgt, 7thFloorPrice: Your Participation -- $FREE Registration Required: ProductCamp@tpma.caWebsite: ProductCampToronto.wordpress.comTPMAIn a November 2011 Forbes article titled“Think your job is bad, try one of these,”product management was highlightedas the third least liked job. Marketingmanagement was not far behind at thetenth least liked job. Clearly there is con-siderable ambiguity, rapid fire change ofpace and priorities, and high pressureassociated with these roles.With pressures like these, the prospectsof a product that goes SPLAT, and dayto day urgencies - it is easy to see howa cloud of gloom may hang heavily overthe product / marketing managers head.On that thought, it seems a natural fit toinclude a short column on positive psy-chology tips, you can use to keep fromgetting glum about your role. Our first ofthis series addresses writing your 3 posi-tives for your day. Try it, it works!Daily we receive advice on coping withlife’s negative events. However, canwe deliberately enhance the impactof the positive events we experience?Research tells us that we tend not torespond to these “good things” in waysthat maximize their positive influence onour lives. Instead, we often ruminate onthe “bad things” almost skimming pastthe good ones. Paying attention to thegood things that happen in our lives andcareer can actually help improve yourmental and physical health, strengthenyour resilience and help you find moreHappiness with 3 PositivesAbout the AuthorKristina Dragnea is aMasters candidate incounseling psychology,with the aim of licensingas a psychologist. Sheis experienced in mind-fulness-based methodsof cognitive behavioraltherapy and positive psychotherapy.Contact: email@example.com solutions to problems.A simple way of gaining awareness ofthe positive events you experience, andstrengthening the impact they have onyou is to write them down each day.Write down three positive occurrences aday to start and once you get comfort-able with this practice you may find yourlist expanding, giving your own positiveoutlook a boost. By default, this will alsohelp you reduce your focus on the nega-tive events in career and life. Empiricalresearch has shown writing down justthree positive occurrences each day willshift your focus to the positive eventsand improve the overall sense of happi-ness you feel. In fact people who docu-mented positive moments were shownto be 21% happier and 31% less likelyto be depressed than those who did not.Check out works by Barbara Fredrick-son on positivity, and Mihaly Csikszent-mihalyi on flow for further information.Wisdom from the CrowdQuotes directly from YOUQuestion: What is the most impor-tant thing you learned from a fail-ure or disaster in one of your prod-ucts/companies?"You should expect over the career thatyou will fail in a project, and the impor-tant thing is learn from that failure andnot repeat the same mistakes"--- Michael Campbell"In technology and software you can’texpect to use yesterday’s strategies fortomorrow’s problems. You have to havethe courage to kill your own ideas, ifneed be." --- Deepak Bhangu“One of the most important things Ilearned is to keep to timelines and set-ting expectations from what is beingplanned to what can be delivered”--- Anson Kokkat“A failure can mean a lot of things andteaches you to do things the right way”--- Patty Pallisco“If we are building a big platform alwaysmake sure to keep milestones manage-able by dividing the big deliverable intoset of small deliverables, keeping theteam morale high each time we cross amilestone.Every journey begins with that one smallstep and is a set of multiple small steps” --- Niki Coons“Focus on the time to market and launchthe product meeting the basic needs ofthe customers and accept that there willbe ongoing improvements made basedon customer feedback. Nothing can beperfect in the first go.”--- Tara dos Remedios“If you don’t take risk you can’t learn”--- Sandeep Gupta
TPMAMANY product recalls have splashedacross the news in recent memory.• In 2007, Menu Foods recalled60 million plus cans of pet foodwhen a contaminant was foundoriginating from the manufactur-ing facility in China, resulting inpets falling ill and millions in re-call costs.• Bridgestone/Firestone tire treadseparation issue resulted inthe recall of 6.5 million tires in2000.• 1982 Tylenol scare: attributedto product tampering and re-sulted in seven deaths and awholesale change in productpackaging.It does not matter if your product is man-ufactured or coded within your control,outside of your immediate influence,or otherwise. If a catastrophic defectinjures, causes property damage or fi-nancial losses, it is critical that your in-surance broker understands your mech-anisms help protect you in these events.A broker will work to ensure you are cov-ered if a deficiency is found.General Liability InsuranceCommercial General Liability (CGL) isthe portion of your business insurancethat responds to injury or damage tothird parties resulting from your actions,the actions of your employees, or the ac-tions of your product(s).Third parties are those who are not em-ployed by the firm making your product.These can be your direct customer, oryour customer’s customer, or the gener-al public if your product is resold as partof other products and/or services.Product’s Liability InsuranceThe CGL includes a component calledProducts Liability Insurance. In essence,this is the section that outlines the cov-erage provided to defend and/or pay fordamages your product causes in the wayof injury or property damage or losses tothird parties (i.e. code defects).This section defends and compensatesSo Things have gone awry ...for claims for which a company may beheld legally liable resulting from the alle-gation against the product. However, thisis not a warranty or guarantee of yourproduct’s abilities.Injury & Property DamageWhat your product is or does has a bear-ing on the extent of risk it poses to theend user(s). As you can likely imagine,bodily injury claims can range from theinnocuous -- chipped teeth (foreign ob-ject in a food product) or burnt hands(poor fitting lids or cups) -- to the cata-strophic -- death (safety products, fires/explosions, or misuse of pharmaceuti-cals). Property damage losses can in-clude fire (faulty wiring) or crashes (un-der engineered product).Many claims are not foreseeable. Tostart, identify the intended end-user.Your knowledge of your demographiclets you map out worst case scenariosthat could come from the product’s use.Insurer ReachYour insurance company is there to pro-tect you in the event of third party injurydamage or loss, and needs to be whereyour product is or will be going. How-ever, not all insurance companies areprepared nor able to support you if youlaunch abroad. Some countries requirelocal policies as a global insurance pro-gram is not recognized by the local regu-lators.By understanding your business, yourbroker can ensure you are properly cov-ered by carriers capable of matchingyour global reach today and in the future.Recall InsuranceYou have found a problem with yourproduct that may result in third party inju-ry, damage or losses. As the Good Cor-porate Citizen, you advise your buyersthat there is a problem and that the prod-uct needs to be immediately taken out ofcirculation and repaired or replaced.Recalls are most commonly associatedwith automobiles. However, there aremany examples of product recalls involv-ing food products (for human or animalconsumption), toys, and software up-dates. Recalls may not have anything todo with how your product was designed– it could be a result from a supplier of apart or sub-assembly.There can be significant costs associat-ed with confirming which batch of prod-ucts manufactured are subject to therecall. This includes communicating therecall notice through public media chan-nels; and inspection, disposal, transpor-tation costs you and/or your vendors in-cur once you have gathered up all of therecalled products.Limits to BuyThere are a number of ways to deter-mine how much insurance you need. In-dustry peers may be able to advise youas to what is appropriate. Your insurancebroker can benchmark your companyagainst similar clients and make sug-gestions. However, you may be requiredto provide specific limits based on yourcontracts with suppliers or end-user(s).You will need to balance how much in-surance you can afford to purchase, howmuch you want, and your view of the riskyour product potentially poses.Getting an OpinionAn insurance broker familiar with yourindustry is critical because the brokerwill help define the coverage your com-pany needs based on experience. It isimportant that the broker has the samegeographic reach that your product hasand represents insurance companiesthat will provide the necessary supportshould you need the insurance firm’s de-fense.The right partner now means peace ofmind as your product debuts to nationalor international acclaim.About the AuthorLou Fisch CIP CRM isPartner & Vice Presidentat HKMB HUB Interna-tional, Canada’s largestinsurance brokerage. Hewelcomes all of your in-surance inquiries at 416-597-4009 or firstname.lastname@example.org .