Posts on Product Management/Ownership

Agile Soul Mates Jamming in Florida by Mary Gorman

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When you see Agile business analysis and product management as a topic for multi-day, deep conversions, you’ve entered the world of Agile Open Jam.

For the second year in a row, the Agile Open Jam on “Business Analysis and Product Management in Agile” was a big hit at the Building Business Capability conference.

This is the second Agile Open Jam EBG has hosted (last year, Ellen hosted), and we were jazzed yet again by the enthusiasm, sharing, and energy the Open Jam generated. Dozens and dozens of folks participated—proposing provocative topics, diving into deep conversations, and networking with kindred spirits.

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Product Management Agile Open Jam: A Successful Launch

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I recently returned from co-hosting the first Product Management Agile Open Jam. What a great experience! Our goal was to “inspire and ignite” the product management community—and from the energy in the space, I’d say we succeeded. To get a glimpse into what it was like, check out these scenes from the 2014 Product Management Festival (PMF) Agile Open Jam in Zurich.

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Agile Product Management Open Jam

I’m excited about my involvement in the first ever Agile Open Jam specifically for product managers. This unconference within a conference is part of September’s Product Management Festival in Zurich and is sponsored by the Agile Alliance. The announcement below, posted by the Product Management Festival team, highlights the event:

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9 Things Every Product Manager Should Know about Being an Agile Product Owner

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Congratulations. You’re now an agile “product owner,” the champion for your product. No biggie–you just have ultimate accountability for the health and well-being of your product. You “own” the product vision, deeply and emphatically understanding customer needs, keeping pulse of changing stakeholder values, and making continual decisions on what to build (or not), and when. This is a tall order.

Maybe you came into this work from being a product manager, having been in marketing, customer service, finance, business analysis, engineering, sales, or some other business or technical area. Or perhaps you came into being a product owner directly from one of those roles. You likely understand the aptitudes and aptitudes of a great product manager.

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5 Ways to Recognize a Great Product Manager

1aIf you’ve been a product manager for a few years, you already know what I’m about to say. Product management is a hard job. The most successful product managers share these traits:

  • They are well versed in their products
  • They stay attuned to their customers
  • They can lead and communicate a vision equally well with engineering teams and the c-suite crowd
  • They have a knack for sifting through and prioritizing multiple (and often competing) wants and needs

If that’s not enough, the best product managers also share a very unique attitude: they are empathic and curious, while balancing a ruthless drive for specificity with a poetic tolerance for ambiguity.

To help make the point that product management is a tough but rewarding job, I wanted to share some factors to look for in a great product manager.

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Focus on Value: 4 Factors Every Team Should Consider

1Most of our clients share the same goal: deliver value. Yet often we find that these same clients cannot define what value looks like for their companies, or determine how to use value to inform project decisions.

We’ve identified 4 key factors to help your team bring value into focus:

  • Involve the Right People
  • Define Value Transparently
  • Look Toward the Short Term
  • Have the Vision to Change

Involve the Right People

Defining a product’s desired result, before building it, is fundamental to that product’s success. To do this successfully, you need to identify all of the key stakeholders from the customer, business, and technology realms. These stakeholders need to work together, as collaborating product partners, to envision the product, define goals, and specify measurable objectives, thereby creating a high-level view of the desired product outcomes. Having these key markers will ensure that the team is always building the most valuable thing.

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“Discover to Deliver Explained” Video

d2dvideoWe’re excited to announce the release of “Discover to Deliver Explained.” This two-minute video provides an animated overview of the key concepts in our book Discover To Deliver: Agile Product Planning and Analysis.

You asked for a short synopsis of Discover to Deliver concepts that you could share with others. This video offers a quick, easy-to-follow explanation of the 7 Product Dimensions, product partners, the structured conversation, and the Now-, Pre- and Big-View, as they relate to agile requirements.

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Jelling at Open Jam – Agile Analysis, Product Management

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We’re launching something new at next week’s Building Business Capability Conference (BBC): An Open Jam on Agile Analysis and Product Management. Whether you are new to agile or have been on your agile journey for a while, this Open Jam offers you a chance to exchange experiences, explore new ideas, and share struggles with like-minded colleagues. The best part? You don’t have to miss the regularly scheduled sessions to attend and you suggest and participate in the topics that interest you. Let me explain.

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Insights and Takeaways: Agile Topics at Project World/World Congress for Business Analysis

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For the past several years, I have had the privilege of chairing the Agile Summit portion of the Project World/World Congress for Business Analysts. I hope you were able to join us last month in Orlando. We had a tremendous turnout and enjoyed our time learning and networking with each other.

Since then, I’ve had several requests for a summary of my half-day tutorial with Ainsley Nies, “An Agile Approach to Project and Products” as well as the Agile Summit presentation “Got Value? A Practical, Sustainable Value Model for Making Agile Product Decisions” and the track session I gave: “It’s the Goal, Not the Role: The Work of Agile Project Management and Business Analysis.” I wrote up a quick synopsis of all three, along with some suggestions that you can try in your next planning or retrospective session.

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