Here are two talks from the Agile Alliance’s 2016 conference in Atlanta:
What: Agile2016, July 25 – 29, Atlanta, GA
Intro to Agile Product Innovation, Weds, July 27th
Innovation is a complicated topic. Product folks often focus the discussion externally: how do we build products that customers and buyers find more innovative? Attract more users, out-design the competition, create strategic advantage? Process folks often focus the discussion internally: how do we better understand the true needs and ROI models of our users? Boost quality and delivery speed? Create more joy for our teams?
In this session, we suggested a few different definitions or metrics for innovation. Then we unpacked several approaches to innovation: team-level improvements and internal process changes; feature-level innovation and keeping up with competitors; and entirely new product/market opportunities. We talked a lot about lean UX approaches to mapping customer problems, market experiments, revenue and market share as proxies for innovation. We also deflated a few popular myths about products we love (e.g. iPod).
Intro to Agile Product Management, Monday July 25th
Product owner is a critical role for agile/scrum teams, as a key stakeholder and representative of users, customers or markets. Commercial software companies have a broader role — product manager — responsible for identifying market needs/opportunities, making product-level decisions about offerings/benefits/pricing/packaging/channels/financial goals, and managing sales/customer relationships on behalf of executives. Since products often span multiple scrum teams, some products have a mix of product owners and product managers.
We introduced product owners, mapped product owners against software product managers, and talked through approaches to meet all of the product needs for market success.