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John Cutler
here's a little thread on roadmaps and roadmapping 1/8 Roadmaps are almost *never* enough as standalone artifacts. There is no possible way one "thing" can communicate so much nuance: assumptions, risk, vision, "the bet", nesting, etc.
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John Cutler 3 Dec 18
Replying to @johncutlefish
2/8 The need for a "solid roadmap that everyone understands" (without additional conversation/context) is a race to the bottom on some level. You'll succeed, but almost by definition everyone will be missing *something*.
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John Cutler 3 Dec 18
Replying to @johncutlefish
3/8 PMs know this...go low level, people will ask you to go high. Go high, they say get more specific. Get solution based, people will ask for "the problem". The problem... "we need specificity". It is a never ending cycle.
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John Cutler 3 Dec 18
Replying to @johncutlefish
4/8 Feature-based roadmaps are often used because "everyone in the organization needs to know what's coming!" Fair point. But what if I told you that this need causes premature convergence which impacts outcomes? The trick is to converge at the last responsible moment.
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John Cutler 3 Dec 18
Replying to @johncutlefish
5/8 I always tell the story about the salesperson who said "I used to want to sell the roadmap. But now I sell what we've done in the last 12 months, and the outcomes we create". Food for thought...
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John Cutler 3 Dec 18
Replying to @johncutlefish
6/8 So... I always ask teams, "do you present the roadmap regularly, field questions, share supplemental material?" Do you revise the format based on feedback in those meetings? And do you do this up/down the org?
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John Cutler 3 Dec 18
Replying to @johncutlefish
7/8. I also urge PMs to keep a rolling 6-12 month RM in place at all times, with progressive decomposition (big lofty one-liners are OK for anything 2+ months out). Why? Repeat conversations....no "i'm pulling together the 2019 roadmap as we speak".
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John Cutler 3 Dec 18
Replying to @johncutlefish
8/8. In short, roadmaps rarely stand alone. Teams use them to communicate and get feedback. And then revise. You almost always need multiple versions to accommodate different audiences. There's no magic format.
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Bruce McTague 3 Dec 18
Replying to @johncutlefish
not exactly product management, but have you read Jason Fox "How to Lead a Quest." seems like you would not only like it but pick out a couple things to compliment what you already say & think.
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John Cutler 3 Dec 18
Replying to @BruceMctague
I haven’t! Looks compelling.
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Bartek Nowak 3 Dec 18
Replying to @johncutlefish
Thank you for this thread .
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