More segments from the Q&A session I had with Adrian Jank — and shedding some light onto just exactly what makes Adrian truly The Best Product Person of 2013.
What makes The Best Product Person person of 2013 tick?
> What trends do you see in product management? positive trends?
I think the biggest positive trend in product management is the Lean movement over the last 3-4 years. It’s really put the customer in focus and made product development a more collaborative process. Because of lean I think product management and developer roles are starting to brush up against that of great designers. Great design is often rooted in deep research, and as product management has evolved we have gotten more and more involved in the research process. Our involvement naturally makes the research process more collaborative with developers and others in the process.
Negative Trends: In a way its starting to make some companies think they can cannibalize product management by assigning it across the roles of a tech lead and UX lead. While I think you can get away with this for some period of time, eventually an organization is going to reach a point where the execution of a strategy starts to fail. It will happen because the dev team ran into problems and kills the functionality without really understanding the value lost, or poorly executed UI will be released because the designer didn’t spend enough time in the design phase–“Any flaws in the design can be addressed in the next iteration!”– and the customer gets mad.
> How do you see product management evolving over the next 5 years?
People who understand the psychology of the customer are going to be better positioned to create long term value for larger and larger companies. As this happens, more and more product managers are going to be tapped for CEO positions. While we may not have some of the deep financial knowledge, we do understand how to move metrics, and we understand that if you move the right qualitative metrics, customers, and their spending will follow.
Nominate TBPP 2014 Today!
Thank you to everyone who participated, nominated, interviewed, AND passed on the word! The nomination period for The Best Product Person of 2014 has begun! The individual who first nominates TBPP is also awarded! Nominate your pick for The Best Product Person right now!
Over the next few weeks I will share more of my interview with other great participants from The Best Product Person of 2013!
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