EOL Cookbook

gravestone

When it’s time to retire a commercial product or service, here’s an approach:
1. Get a list of all of that product’s users, if we know them.
2. Pick an end-of-support date and an announcement date.
3. Think hard about technical migration choices…

Read more
 

Webcast with John Peltier

John Peltier is a seasoned product manager out of Atlanta, and does a periodic  webcast with guest product folks posted on his Product Owner Vision blog.  He generously included me in an interview posted on12 December.  We recorded a half hour discussion covering: How Product Camps can increase awareness among senior and executive level product management How product managers can help engineering organizations to understand what product managers do outside of engineering to help ensure the success of a product Options for a product manager to advance in the field Listen to the entire session here.

Read more
 

Does Your Product Suck?

It’s been a tough week on the technical front, with a variety of products failing to perform their core functions for me. Which prompts a somewhat emotional question for those of us who oversee products (or services) for a living: Does your product suck? Does it #fail to do the one thing that customers buy it for? Here’s some background (a/k/a my tale of woe)… First, the dishwasher Our brand-new home has a brand-new kitchen, stacked with brand-new appliances. That includes a shiny, top-of-the-line Bosch dishwasher with dozens of settings and options and modes. What it lacks, unfortunately, is a reliable way to turn it on – to start the wash cycle. Of course, there is a START button, and…

Read more
 

Grocers and Chefs: Software Service Models

This article captured an April 2007 talk I did at SVPMA.  The original slide deck is here. I’m talking with more and more with companies considering a shift from traditional licensing models to hosted software-as-a-service (SaaS). It’s important to recognize the radical changes such a move may force within your entire company.  This column serves up a metaphor for the mental and organizational adjustments needed to move from a “product” model to a service business.

Read more
 

Avoiding the Post-Course Correction

As early as 1961, Soviet and American space scientists planned for mid-course corrections: those tiny bursts of rocket power designed to keep spacecraft on their trajectories to the Moon, Mars and beyond.  With such long voyages, mid-course corrections are crucial to keeping space flights on track with the minimum of effort – and reserving fuel for later adjustments. The high-tech opposite of this is something I’ve come to think of as the “post-course correction.”  This is the panicky “oops” moment when your startup realizes – much too late – that its core strategy and assumptions are flawed.  In space terms, you’ve missed the moon and don’t have enough resources left for dramatic course changes.  There’s still air in the cabin…

Read more
 

Insider Thinking

Product managers and other product champions spend a lot of their time driving internal processes and decisions — the daily incremental struggle for progress on pricing, packaging, release schedules, upgrade policies and other bits of the production puzzle. This relentless motivation is indispensable, the tech equivalent of keeping the trains running on time. PMs should also be spending time with customers, refreshing their sense of needs and marketplaces.

Read more
 

The Strategic Secret Shopper

what are your competitors saying?

Read more
 

Mo’ Beta

setting reasonable expectations

Read more
 

So Your Product Wants to Be a Service…

deskbell

not so easy

Read more