If you're a big fish in a small pond, you're probably one of the leaders in the market space you've defined as your pond. Conversely, if you're a small fish in a big pond, you're probably trying to be too many things to too many people, which dilutes your strengths and takes away any competitive advantage you might have. Which category do you fall into?
Asking your customers for input on future product direction can be a double- edged sword. If you're not asking the right questions, this process can create more headaches than it cures. Here are a few simple tips that should yield more useful customer feedback.
Product planning is nothing less than an exercise in prioritization. There are always a hundred things you need, but it boils down to the ten you can get done. So the question becomes, which ten best help your cause?
Product management positions are among the toughest to fill in the high technology industry due to the broad range of skills and real-world experiences that make for success in any given environment. A successful product manager in one organization doesn't necessarily translate to a successful product manager in your organization because the circumstances may be very different.
The problem with dividing product management into strategic and tactical camps is that most people shy away from the tactical label because it lacks the glamor of a strategist, not to mention all the hard work that goes with it. You can hardly blame them.
Most high technology product companies have a strategic plan that includes goals for revenue growth, new customers, market share and other quantifiable metrics. But a huge disconnect often exists between the strategic plan and product plans. The result is an organization going in many different directions.
Most people manage money with two objectives: protect it, and invest to secure the future. Your product development team is like a financial portfolio. Are you investing to secure the future or spending like a shopaholic?
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