We're gearing up for our first survey to product managers. The topic for this round is product management tools: What do you use? What do you find most effective?
The results should be very interesting. I can offer a lot of advice about tools, having done a lot of experimentation over the years. However valuable my own hard-won experience (a lot of trial and error) might be, it's even more useful to get a view across the technology industry. Frequent challenges, best practices, and trends will be a lot more visible from high above Silicon Valley and beyond.
What's in it for you to join the survey? You get a copy of the research paper based on the survey data, gratis, with our heartfelt thanks for contributing.
If you're interested in participating in any of our product management surveys, just drop me a line.
A colleague, Ray Wang, has loads of fascinating statistics in his recent data overview, "The State Of Enterprise Software Adoption: 2007 To 2008." A staggering number of companies have developed and maintain custom applications.
Ray's piece is written for the market researcher, but like all good research, it has much broader implications. Perhaps you won't be surprised when I say, "Including product managers!"
The statistic says that a lot of demand exists that technology vendors are not meeting. Custom development is a last resort--and I should know, since I've done it myself.
Twice in my career, I've pushed to create custom requirements management (RM) applications. In the last case, I wrote it myself in PHP and MySQL. (Never fear, it's a laughably rudimentary application, functionality-wise, so the friend and colleague who inherited it wasn't left with an unmaintainable mess.)