Thursday, March 29, 2012

The Customer's voice - it's out there

As an excited Product Manager with the team that put together the first construction sprint of a greenfield product, I booked a meeting room and invited other Agile teams and stakeholders to the demo. No sooner did an excited team member demo the features that we started getting feedback and comments.

The screen has too much white space - why can you not use the real estate.
I don't think that companies store photos of their contacts.
Displaying each record in a tile - is pretty but occupies space - grid is so much better
How do I read the tiles, top to down, right to left or a mix - its confusing
Don't you plan on including sorting or filtering?
I can't see how an organization can work on a complaint without performing a series of steps

So what do I do next as an Agile Product Manager, update the product backlog to incorporate all of the feedback? Not just yet. The discovery of this set of feedback calls for validation by the target customer and customer representatives. At the end of the validation activities, my target customers or representatives may well provide the same feedback, and that's when I update the product backlog to reflect the value that the customer is expecting from the product.

For a greenfield product, my best bet would be folks that fit the user profile on which the product is modeled. Another set could be customer representatives, folks who have been on the field listening to customers - like sales engineers and solution consultants.

The voice that determines the product backlog is out there, it's up to the Product Manager to reach out and listen.

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