We’re another month into 2022, a month that saw Mind the Product run a successful focus week on roadmapping, and a leadership panel on navigating difficult relationships. Here’s a recap of our most-read articles from February.
How to get the most value out of your product roadmap
This article, written by Paul van den Broek, Product Manager at Dutch software company Coosto, runs through what a roadmap is and – just as importantly – what it isn’t. It’s not a list of features or a deadline management tool, rather an instrument to align, prioritise, track progress, and communicate your product development and strategy over time, aligned with your business goals.
Paul then looks at different ways roadmaps may be set up depending on the company and phase of the product and at how you can use your roadmap to support making product decisions based on value. He emphasises that the roadmap is a living artefact and a valuable asset. It should be considered to be a shared source of truth about the direction of product development and therefore the way you communicate about it is fundamental.
Roadmaps: break the rules without breaking the principles
Mind the Product’s Managing Director Emily Tate digs into the dates/no dates roadmap debate in this article. She offers some advice on how to both keep your roadmap date-free by stealth and when to cave in to inevitable pressure and give a roadmap item a date. As Emily says: “It is easy to break the common rules of roadmapping, especially when it makes your executives happy. It is very difficult to do it well, and to not let it take you down the path to becoming a feature factory. But if you really understand the problems you’re trying to solve in a flexible roadmap, you can find ways to achieve your goals without adhering to the ‘perfect’ format.”
Product manager zero: How to be number one
In this post, we talk to a number of product managers to find out what it’s like to be the first product hire in a business and what skills and qualities you need to possess.
Being PM Zero can be overwhelming – like drinking from the fire hose – say our contributors, so a calm and structured approach needs to be combined with a willingness to help out whenever and wherever you’re needed. They offer some useful advice on dos and don’ts to help make the role a success.
3 ways product managers’ roles have evolved – and where they’re headed next
Over the last few years, advances in technology, changing supply chains and evolving customer expectations have all wrought big changes to the way product managers do their jobs. This article from Maziar Adl, Co-founder and CTO of Gocious, looks at these past changes and looks forward to how the role will almost certainly change in the future.
Effective communication with software engineers
Simon Munoz says that learning to communicate effectively with your engineering team is undoubtedly one of the skills that you will get the most out of in your career as a product manager. He offers no less than 11 strategic pieces of advice to help you improve your working relationship with software engineers, much of which could also be successfully applied to other functions in the business.