Product Thinking
Answering Questions About Product Strategy Audits, Offering Professional Services, and Staying or Leaving a Product Job
March 8, 2023
In this Dear Melissa segment, Melissa Perri answers subscribers’ questions about how to do a product strategy audit, offering professional services to one-off clients, and how to choose whether to stay on at the company in a new capacity. Q: What steps, processes and resources would you recommend for conducting a product strategy audit? I'm considering a new role in product strategy, and I think the best place to start is a comprehensive review of the current strategy to the extent that it exists and how our product plans align with it.  A: That is the best place to do a product strategy audit, but you have to hit it from two sides. This is what I do when I go in to do a product strategy audit. Q: One of our clients requires a custom SSO integration with a good amount of complexity. The client is expecting us to deliver it as professional services. They are paying for it, so they want a clear Gantt chart project plan and a project manager that can deliver on time, on scope, and on budget. I don't have technical project managers on my team, only product managers who are more discovery oriented and are used to building products, not as a service. I don't have enough professional service work to hire a project manager to be fully dedicated to this kind of work. …Any tips on how to handle this situation in the short term? While we can't hire someone specific for this role, how should we share roles and responsibilities between product tech and customer service? A: I feel like there's some underlying problems that I'm picking out of this that are not just related to roles and responsibilities. Here’s how I would deal with this issue. Q: I'm a team lead in a three person business intelligence team for a small company. We're currently undergoing a merger into a much larger enterprise with over 8000 staff. I'm seeing indicators that the product people in the larger enterprise have little interest involving me in product discovery and strategy, which areas of the previous environment that I really enjoyed. One stated they judge me as one of their technical people, which I interpret as they don't see a place for me in product discovery and direction. I believe I need to decide if I want to be a purely technical resource or find another job where I'm more welcome at the product discovery and strategy table. Are you able to give me any advice on navigating this situation?  A: I'm slightly mad that all of these product managers are completely dismissing you, and you are a fantastic resource. This is crazy. So here's the thing. Business intelligence is a critical skill. They might not understand what you actually do. So let's start with that… Resources Melissa Perri on LinkedIn | Twitter MelissaPerri.com | CPO Accelerator
In this Dear Melissa segment, Melissa Perri answers subscribers’ questions about how to do a product strategy audit, offering professional services to one-off clients, and how to choose whether to stay on at the company in a new capacity. Q: What steps, processes and resources would you recommend for conducting a product strategy audit? I'm considering a new role in product strategy, and I think the best place to start is a comprehensive review of the current strategy to the extent that it exists and how our product plans align with it.  A: That is the best place to do a product strategy audit, but you have to hit it from two sides. This is what I do when I go in to do a product strategy audit. Q: One of our clients requires a custom SSO integration with a good amount of complexity. The client is expecting us to deliver it as professional services. They are paying for it, so they want a clear Gantt chart project plan and a project manager that can deliver on time, on scope, and on budget. I don't have technical project managers on my team, only product managers who are more discovery oriented and are used to building products, not as a service. I don't have enough professional service work to hire a project manager to be fully dedicated to this kind of work. …Any tips on how to handle this situation in the short term? While we can't hire someone specific for this role, how should we share roles and responsibilities between product tech and customer service? A: I feel like there's some underlying problems that I'm picking out of this that are not just related to roles and responsibilities. Here’s how I would deal with this issue. Q: I'm a team lead in a three person business intelligence team for a small company. We're currently undergoing a merger into a much larger enterprise with over 8000 staff. I'm seeing indicators that the product people in the larger enterprise have little interest involving me in product discovery and strategy, which areas of the previous environment that I really enjoyed. One stated they judge me as one of their technical people, which I interpret as they don't see a place for me in product discovery and direction. I believe I need to decide if I want to be a purely technical resource or find another job where I'm more welcome at the product discovery and strategy table. Are you able to give me any advice on navigating this situation?  A: I'm slightly mad that all of these product managers are completely dismissing you, and you are a fantastic resource. This is crazy. So here's the thing. Business intelligence is a critical skill. They might not understand what you actually do. So let's start with that… Resources Melissa Perri on LinkedIn | Twitter MelissaPerri.com | CPO Accelerator

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