124: Unconventional Perspectives On Product Roadmaps

124: Unconventional Perspectives on Product Roadmaps

Product Roadmaps – can’t live with ’em, can’t live without ’em

Facts about roadmaps

  • They are predicting the future
    • As Neils Bohr said, “Prediction is hard, especially about the future.”
  • A roadmap is interpreted as a commitment
    • This is a cognitive bias of your audience
    • You must manage it
  • The audience doesn’t really want to know what you are working on anyway
    • They want to know any of a bunch of other things
    • They think that learning what you are working on will give them that

In this episode I share some perspectives about product roadmaps that, while true, are unconventional.

Putting the ideas in this episode into practice

  1. Recognize that roadmaps aren’t for communication, they are for persuasion and influence
    • So you need to use your tools for persuasion and influence tools, like storytelling, pacing, putting yourself in the audience’s shoes
  2. Understand that your biggest constituency is your audience’s subconscious, not their rational brain
  3. Keep in mind what they need from you, not what you have to tell them
  4. Don’t be a completist. It’s easy to be that way, but it’s a mistake, because no one cares
    • And your audience’s brains are resisting new information anyway.
    • Instead, tell stories about the selected items you’re sharing.

Product Management Grad School

I have room for up to two new clients for my Product Manager Grad School starting in December or January.

Every day you’re faced with challenges that test your confidence, your product management skills, and your problem solving and persuasion abilities

My PM Grad School program is a combination of 1) an individualized training curriculum tailored to your needs and 2) one-on-one coaching.

Clients say:

  • ”It’s tactical, pragmatic skills that I can start using right away,”
  • “You taught me overarching, key methods, and frameworks that I can apply to virtually every aspect of product management. In particular, storytelling became a powerful skill set.”
  • And “I became a lot more confident – and felt like ‘This isn’t so scary!’”

Confidence, skill building, frameworks and mental models – you get all of it in the PM Grad School program.

Reach out to me for more info about the program at pmgradschool@nilsdavis.com or on LinkedIn.