Before financial software provider Aquila Heywood transformed how it approaches prioritisation, it had a backlog that was more than 20 years long and its projects took about seven years to release. Product Director Holly Donohue was part of the team that changed how the business approaches its work, so that it now sees value being realised in a few months. As she says, there’s still some way to go – but in this conversation, she shares some of the lessons learned on the journey so far.
Quotes of the Episode
The challenge with the matrix is… the illusion of it being a science, when actually it still needs to be a bit of an art and still needs the human conversation.
Technical debt is like your basement is flooding – but if you don’t turn that tap off, you’re wasting your time.
Listen if you’d like to learn more about:
- Saying no – and how to do it
- The importance of communication and measurement
- Transforming your processes
- Balancing work on defects/debt and strategic work
- Prioritisation strategies
The Product Experience is hosted by Lily Smith and Randy Silver.
Lily enjoys working as a consultant product manager with early stage and growing startups and as a mentor to other product managers. Lily has spent 13 years in the tech industry working mainly with startups in the SaaS and mobile space. She has worked on a diverse range of products – leading the product teams through discovery, prototyping, testing and delivery. Lily also founded ProductTank in Bristol, the Product Managers’ meetup with regular events and talks on Product now with 800+ members and growing. This year Lily will be launching ProductCamp in Bristol and she joins the MTP team as co-host of The Product Experience podcast.
A recovering music journalist and editor, Randy has been working as an interactive producer and product manager across the US and UK for nearly 20 years. After launching Amazon’s music stores in the US and UK, Randy has worked with museums and arts groups, online education, media & entertainment, retail and financial services. He’s held Head of Product roles at HSBC and Sainsbury’s, where he also directed their 100+-person product community. He’s also spoken at Mind the Product Engage (Hamburg), at a number of ProductTanks (London, Zurich, Manchester, Birmingham, Bristol, Oxford, & Brighton… so far!) and at conferences across the US and Europe.
Our theme music is from Hamburg-based Pau, featuring ProductTank Hamburg’s own Arne Kittler on bass. Listen to more on their Facebook page
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