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Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Trait that creates a success manager – VI

Trait – build what customer like and not just what you prefer

A typical business challenge that a product manager is expected answer is “What will make my product most desirable by its target customers?”
Answer to this question is simple. solve customer problem, and they will love it. A straight question, with a simple answer yet we don’t get there.

Why do we struggle to offer customer what they value? Probably we as product owners at times get lost in our desires & dreams of our product so much that we forget that our prime responsibility is to build what customer will value. Bring value to your customer, either by helping him earn more or by saving his cost. Usability aspects like look and feel, easy to install, fast application etc are default requirements, you cannot sell your product just on these points

Build your product on values, categorize each feature that you add in one of the two categories mentioned below, and if it does not fit in either than drop it happily, there is always next time for those features;

1.    Features that increase revenue, this includes aspects like newer revenue opportunity, increase in usage, selling supplementary services, cross selling etc
2.    Features that save cost, this includes simplifying SOPs, improving productivity, reducing or eliminating third party license fee, saving on infrastructure / manpower etc

A success manager will always be focused on adding features that falls in one of the mentioned two categories. As @annua rightly mentioned in her May blog @productmantra “are you going feature crazy?” adding feature is not equal to improving product, it is important for you keep your product simple & lightweight and refrain from adding what you can live without.


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