Opening Up Product Management: Involving Different Product Teams

June 6, 2014

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Product Management sits at the intersection of customer, technology and business. The product manager’s role is a continual balancing act between each of these areas, which means involving the right people, in the right ways, at the right times.

In this post, we take you through how you can bring together different product managers into a coordinated product strategy using good processes and ProdPad tools.

 

Organize your product landscape into portfolios

How product management is structured differs from business to business. But even those without diverse product offerings are likely to break product management into a series of different areas. If you have more than one product manager, organizing this effectively becomes even more important. Define distinct products and – if necessary – portfolios for groups of those products. This gives different product managers a key area of focus where they can update existing product materials, and review all potential and upcoming developments for the products they own. Uniting these in a consistent format in ProdPad keeps everyone working to the same processes, and moving in the same direction.

 

Coordinate product streams under a master roadmap 

If you have different products, and even different product management teams, that doesn’t mean that you’re running separate businesses. All of product management should be pulling together to achieve a single product vision, and be agreed generally on how they’re going to get there. On top of separate products and portfolios, creating a master roadmap that sets the direction of each product stream is key to turning your product vision into viable, meaningful products that work together. 

 

Give structure to the backlog with tags and filters 

A product backlog can easily become a huge mess when not managed efficiently, particularly when you have more than one product manager capturing and pruning potential ideas. ProdPad enables Product Managers to retain order over a backlog of any size with advanced tags and filters. Ideas can be categorized based on anything from product, to user persona, to an idea’s specific author. Product Managers can drill down to the ideas that are relevant to their own products, without losing visibility of what’s happening across different product portfolios and ultimately the big picture.

 

Allow every Product Manager to follow relevant ideas

Although different product managers might be responsible for specific products, it is inevitable that other new developments or ideas will be of interest to them too. In-built collaboration and granular notifications allow every Product Manager to stay in the loop. In ProdPad, an idea author can be set for any idea to ensure that product managers receive updates on any changes to their own canvases. However they can also opt in to follow any additional ideas, regardless of which products these are related to. ProdPad allows different team members to discuss the viability and progress of product ideas via comments and mentions, in an organized system where everything is logged and searchable.

 

If you’d like to find out more about how ProdPad can be used across a large or complex product management team, sign up for a free 14 day trial here.

Next week, discover how ProdPad can help you to open up product management to your executive team.

Janna Bastow is co-founder of ProdPad, software that helps product managers plan and deliver better products. Janna also organizes ProductTank events around the world, including Mind The Product, a global community of product managers. She likes to inspire great product conversations by asking: “What problem are you trying to solve?”

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