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Posted by Mike Gilpin on April 24, 2012
In my blog post yesterday, I asked whether you should be running your software organization as a business that delivers products. Today I will explore what it means for you to take this approach.
As Forrester has pointed out in past research, to move forward in a product-centric way, you must establish a number of capabilities in your organization in a product-centric operating model:
I used to make a living doing product management and running product management organizations, as did a number of people at Forrester. My perspective on product management is somewhat distinct because I started out on the product engineering side, leading product development organizations. But between my first ISV and my second, I saw the contrast between weak, ineffective product management and strong, effective product management. When strong product management is in balance with an effective engineering group, well aligned, it’s a beautiful thing to see. The weak option? You don’t want to know – it was too painful to remember.
Product management is new to many enterprise software development organizations, but there are a lot of people out there who know how to do it. One of the places I used to find strong product manager talent was GE – it pretty much invented product management, although some might disagree. Getting into the finer points of doing great product management would be beyond the scope of a blog post, but when you have it, here are some of the things that will go right – or at least better – in your ability to deliver great software:
So are you struggling with issues like these? Are you trying to live in the age of the customer while delivering software in the old way? Then maybe it’s time for you to move toward a product-centric operating model, at least for those parts of your business that work that way (the core, not the context). Forrester can help you figure this out, and we can help you implement your operating model. We have been delivering workshops for clients to help them understand how to do this, and we can do it for you. If you’re a Forrester client, just submit an inquiry in the normal way, and ask for me – I’ll connect you with the right people on our team.
But even if you don’t ask for our help, if this post resonates with you, it’s time to get product-centric!
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