Product Managers: Why Making Drastic Changes to UI is User-Unfriendly

confused boyThis seems to be a hot trend nowadays at many software companies: Drastically changing the user interface (UI).

In fact, this happened recently to several of the cloud software applications we use internally at our company.

There are many reasons why companies do such major changes: Modernizing the UI, making it prettier, making it more social, making it look more like Facebook/Google+/etc.

While most of these goals are well-intentioned, I believe a lot of the companies are forgetting one important thing… [Read more…]

Product Management & Agile Development: A Real-Life Cautionary Tale (and a Free eBook)

ben-franklin-3I’m writing this post spurred by 2 things:

  1. A real-life story I heard from the VP of Product Management at a large tech company in California. He gave me approval to share his story, as long as I anonymized it & avoided any details specific to his industry. Many thanks to him for the approval.
  2. A very insightful blog post by Jeff Lash of Sirius Decisions & my ensuing Twitter conversations with Jeff, Roger Cauvin, and others.

“Experience keeps a dear school, but fools will learn in no other.” – Benjamin Franklin

As some of you know, I regularly speak with Product Management executives at mid-to-large companies as a part of my job at Accompa.

About 7 weeks ago, I had a very interesting conversation with the VP of Product Management at a large tech company in California. Let us call him Steve (not his real name, I’m anonymizing it per his request).

Steve’s story is a cautionary tale for Product Management (PM) teams everywhere. While I’ve heard “lighter” versions of this story before, this story is very stark & so is good to learn from. Without further ado, here’s the story… [Read more…]

Death of Product Managers and Business Analysts?

M. Twain stampLe sigh!

This past Sunday, I had an interesting debate with a friend of my mine whom I’ll refer to as “Peter” in this article. Mainly because that is his real name.

Peter is the VP of R&D for a cloud-software company in southern California.

He told me (and I’m paraphrasing):

Product Managers and Business Analysts are dying roles, because with Agile/Scrum there is no need for these roles any more. Soon these roles will be eliminated from most of the software companies.”

This statement annoyed the heck out of me. Hence the sigh at the beginning of this post.

Peter and I had a lively (but short) debate, we had to cut it short because we both have day jobs – which seep into weekends! I told him I will make a couple of blog posts to explain my take on this.

So, here is the first one for you, Peter! As I explained in [Read more…]

Software for PM Frameworks like Pragmatic Marketing Framework ™

A question our team sometimes gets from our prospective customers is:

Can Accompa software help me implement Pragmatic Marketing Framework™?

I will provide the answer to this question in this blog post.

[Read more…]

What is MRD? Market Requirements Document

I’m making a quick post today to define the term MRD – Market Requirements Document. I’m often asked about it, now I can just point everyone to this blog post!

Definition of MRD: Market Requirements Document

MRD is a document that is usually written by a Product Marketing Manager or a Product Manager. This document defines the high-level market requirements for a product or project. (See Types of Software Requirements for a list of various types of requirements).

[Read more…]