Product Voices

Product Voices, hosted by JJ Rorie

People who work in product management are on a constant learning journey. Markets are dynamic. Customer needs are transient. Technologies evolve. The ways in which we work changes. We must learn and adapt along the way. Product Voices is a forum to share practical, real-world stories about how to learn and grow in important areas in product management. Learn from the best voices in product management. read less
TechnologyTechnology

Episodes

Product Operations - with Melissa Perri & Denise Tilles
Nov 27 2023
Product Operations - with Melissa Perri & Denise Tilles
Melissa Perri and Denise Tilles, authors of Product Operations: How Successful Companies Build Better Products at Scale, discuss the concept of product operations and why it is crucial for product teams and organizations. Product operations is the enablement function of product management, providing data and insights for strategic decision-making and ensuring alignment within the product development lifecycle. As organizations scale, product operations become increasingly important in managing complexity, prioritizing strategies, fostering transparency, and facilitating collaboration across departments.Melissa and Denise decided to write the book on product operations after realizing the need for a resource for product managers and stakeholders. Their goal was to share their framework, which revolves around three pillars: business and data insights, customer and market insights, and process and governance. They wanted to get ahead of the growing trend of product operations and provide a structure for enabling product teams.We dive deeper into each of these topics, starting with business and data insights. This pillar focuses on extracting information from current systems and analyzing it through a product lens. Many companies focus on financial metrics in board meetings but fail to analyze the data in a way that benefits product development. By implementing cohort analysis and utilizing internal information from financial, sales, product development, and HR systems, leaders can make data-driven product decisions and effectively monitor product strategies and performance. To bridge the gap between business skills and technology skills in product management, financial acumen classes for product managers have been introduced.Next, we discuss customer and market insights, which provide qualitative and anecdotal perspectives from users. Product operations help set up the infrastructure for research and enable teams to conduct repeatable research by building tools and finding ways to engage users. Product managers should maintain a strong understanding of market insights to stay connected with customers.We then share a real-life case study on streamlining user research processes and discuss the importance of process and practice in the context of product operations. Establishing clear guidelines and consistency in working approaches helps product managers focus on strategic work rather than getting caught up in unnecessary tasks. Product operations, when done right, brings efficiency and consistency without adding bureaucratic processes.We emphasize the need for transparency and tracking in companies and explain that product operations can be implemented gradually, starting with one pillar and then expanding to others as priorities shift. It is crucial to showcase successful case studies and demonstrate the potential benefits of product operations to gain buy-in from the organization. The decision to start a product operations team depends on factors such as the number of product managers, scaling plans, and the need for structure and efficiency in managing data and processes.We conclude by advising listeners to start somewhere and focus on the pillar that provides the most value. The book mentioned earlier serves as a valuable resource, offering advice, insights, frameworks, and case studies for anyone interested in product operations.Overall, this conversation provides a comprehensive overview of product operations and its importance in organizations, offering practical insights and guidance for implementation.
Navigating the Landscape of Product Consulting
Nov 8 2023
Navigating the Landscape of Product Consulting
Get ready for a deep dive into the world of product consulting with our special guest, the seasoned consultant, entrepreneur, and leader, Mary Beth Snodgrass. Buckle in as we traverse the terrain of product consulting and its growing popularity, tackling topics from managing product challenges to exploring the gig economy. Mary Beth takes us inside her collective, the PAC, shedding light on their unique, results-oriented approach to advising product teams on strategy and diversity.Stepping further into the sphere, we delve into the competencies of a product leader, the specific hurdles faced by women in tech, and the power of collective intelligence in driving product. Mary Beth discusses the importance of real-world learning and how product consultants can augment organizations. Pondering over the role of advisory boards and proper scoping in product consulting, we unravel the myriad ways consultants add value and how to determine the best fit for your organization.In the grand finale, Mary Beth illuminates the path to setting up a consulting practice. From the financial aspects and risk profiles to the art of building your brand, she provides sage advice for budding consultants. We also turn our focus to the crucial role of business development in product consulting, touching on sales best practices and strategies for assessing your strengths. So, if you're ready to discover the depth and breadth of opportunities in product consulting, don't miss this enlightening conversation.