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Prioritize the Right Ideas With a Transparent Product Management Process

November 10, 2020

2 minute read

Prioritization has always been a difficult topic for product managers to tackle. I came across a question on this topic a little while ago, and thought I’d share with you all how I recommended this PM tackle it. Who knows, it might help you learn how to prioritize too!

First off, they absolutely nailed it in thinking this is the wrong approach. Building a product isn’t about running an internal democracy and working on the most popular items your team thinks you should be working on. At the end of the day, you aren’t building things for yourselves, you’re building things for a market.

With that said, before you just say “no,” it’s important to take a step back and understand where this is coming from. Usually situations like these stem from your team wanting more visibility over what is happening. It is a symptom of the major problem your team is having: lack of transparency.

So the real question is:

How can you make the product management process more transparent for your team?

This is what product tools like ProdPad were designed for. ProdPad acts as a single space where your entire team can access all the information about what it takes to get an idea from inception to implementation. By providing visibility to that process, alongside your product roadmap, your team will have a clear understanding of how you prioritize and make decisions. 

Your team can also ask questions and jump into discussions, help you validate ideas with customer feedback, and keep an eye on how things are moving forward and impacting your objectives.

Prioritize product ideas by looking at the linked customer feedback and improve your prioritization process
Prioritize product ideas by looking at the linked customer feedback

Once you have this increased level of visibility for everyone, it’s likely there will be less focus on the voting aspect of things.

How do you keep your internal product management processes transparent for your entire team? Comment below and let us know. 👇

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November 10, 2020 5:19 pm

I love that this was the advice you shared – spot on! It speaks to one of the reasons I started building ProdPad in the first place: I needed to provide more transparency into my product management decisions, or else feel the pressure from sales and execs as to why certain ideas were selected over others. Once I had a working prototype of ProdPad and was able to show the workings behind why some ideas were making it on to the roadmap and others weren’t, the internal pressures were instantly dissolved and replaced with a more collaborative way of working.

December 3, 2020 9:41 pm

I always strive for our team to possess a shared understanding of what our options are and why we choose the ones we do. We are Trello ninjas – we sync a number of boards and cards and have a bunch of power-ups to emulate things like user impact score. We don’t vote, but we do discuss at length (sometimes ad nauseam) and almost always come to a consensus.