Richard-Banfield

23 / The Product Leader’s Path To High Performance

Description

As a community, have we gotten better at product leadership? The answer depends on who we ask and what we use to measure  performance.

In this episode of the Product Momentum Podcast, Sean and Paul pose the question to Richard Banfield, VP of Design Transformation at InVision. “A lot depends how much you are able to distance yourself from the day-to-day work and take a bigger picture viewpoint,” he responds. “If you’re in the weeds every day, it’s hard to believe that we’re making progress because those daily challenges haven’t necessarily gone away. But if you take a step back and look at the entire industry, you can see we’ve got better at a bunch of things.”

Richard’s Recommended Reading

Loonshots: How To Nurture the Crazy Ideas That Win Wars, Cure Diseases, and Transform Industries, by Safi Bahcall.


About Richard

Richard’s curiosity for product design and leadership has led to four books on these topics. As well as being co-author of Design Sprint and Product Leadership, Richard also authored Design Leadership and Enterprise Design Sprints.

When he’s not writing, speaking or teaching, he is VP of Design Transformation at InVision.

Previously, Richard was the CEO of Fresh Tilled Soil, an international product design agency. Over the past two decades, he’s delivered design and product work for hundreds of companies like Intel, GE Healthcare, Tripadvisor, Walgreens, FedEx, LendingTree, Time Warner Cable, BWIN, Ritz-Carlton, Harvard University, MIT, Hubspot, Intralinks, and Vertica. Prior to running Fresh Tilled Soil, he was a founding partner of Acceleration (now a WPP company).

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roman-pichler

22 / Combining Empathy with Tech

Description

For today’s product leaders, it’s not enough to have technical proficiency or apply the right techniques. These skills are necessary to be sure – vital even – but no longer sufficient by themselves. Effective product leaders deliver even more. To make and implement effective strategy decisions, product leaders need buy-in from key stakeholders. In a role that brings great responsibility but little direct authority, product managers need to build rapport throughout their ecosystem. With rapport comes the trust required to influence the many people in our domain and involve them in delivering solutions for customers.

In this episode of the Product Momentum Podcast, product management expert and leadership consultant Roman Pichler joins Sean and Paul for a behind-the-scenes deep dive into the role the softer skills – specifically, empathy – play in effective software product management. Empathy, Roman says, means recognizing that the human aspect of our job is really at the core of it – no longer just a ‘nice to have.’ Empathy is the capacity we have to understand each other’s feelings and needs, perspectives, and interests.

Roman’s Recommended Reading

The Build Trap: How Effective Product Management Creates Real Value, by Melissa Perri.

Making Strategy: Mapping Our Strategic Success, by Colin Eden and Fran Ackermann.


About Roman

Roman Pichler is a product management expert specialized in digital products. He has more than 15 years experience in teaching product managers and product owners, advising product leaders, and helping companies build successful product management organizations.​ 

​Roman is the author of four books, including the newly released How To Lead In Product Management, as well as Strategize: Product Strategy and Product Roadmap Practices for the Digital Age, Agile Product Management with Scrum, and Scrum. He is a prolific blogger, with more than 140 posts available on his popular blog for product professionals.​ 

​As the founder and director of Pichler Consulting, Roman looks after the company’s offerings. This keeps his product management practice fresh and allows him to experiment with new ideas. Roman is based in Wendover, near London, in the United Kingdom. 

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johanna-rothman

21 / A Pragmatic Approach to Product Management

Description

Imagine a colleague asks you to describe the software product manager role. Where would you begin? So few of us actually studied this stuff in college. How can we hope to explain it when we’re not even sure we’re doing it right? We deliver MVPs for MVAs. We set goals using OKRs and KPIs. And we apply a host of methodologies to build all this incredible software. But in the midst of all the jargon, it’s easy to lose sight of our greater purpose.

In this episode of the Product Momentum Podcast, Sean and Paul chat with Johanna Rothman. Also known as the “Pragmatic Manager,” Johanna helps product leaders identify problems, recognize opportunities, and remove obstacles in their development process. Though she has authored more than a dozen books on digital product management, Johanna sees software not as the end goal – but as the means by which we achieve that greater purpose – inspiring our teams to improve the world around us.

Read our blog post.

Johanna’s Recommended Reading:

The Asshole Survival Guide: How To Deal with People Who Treat You Like Dirt, by Robert I. Sutton.

Scaling Up Excellence: Getting to More Without Settling for Less, by Robert I. Sutton and Huggy Rao.


About Johanna

Johanna Rothman, known as the “Pragmatic Manager,” provides frank advice for your tough problems. She helps leaders and teams see and solve their problems, resolve risks, and manage their product development.

Johanna was the Agile 2009 conference chair and was the co-chair of the first edition of the Agile Practice Guide. Johanna is the author of 17 books that range from hiring, to project management, program management, project portfolio management, and management. Her most recent books are From Chaos to Successful Distributed Agile Teams (with Mark Kilby) and Create Your Successful Agile Project: Collaborate, Measure, Estimate, Deliver.

Check out Johanna’s Managing Product Development blog on her website, where you can also catch up with her e-mail newsletter and gather more information about her books. She has also contributed many columns and articles across the web, including at createadaptablelife.com and projectmanagement.com.

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Fin-Goulding

20 / Flow: Visualize the Possibilities

Description

It’s ironic that companies comprised of teams that have embraced Agile methodologies can at the same time find themselves in search of organizational agility. With all the best intentions, proponents of Agile dutifully adhere to its prescribed set of principles, but then we suddenly find ourselves constrained by the same demons we had sought to escape. We seem to have lost our ability to experiment and learn, to adapt and grow, and to be resilient and flexible in the face of ambiguity.

In this 20th episode of the Product Momentum Podcast, Fin Goulding joins Sean and Paul as together they explore an increasing demand for a more business agile way of working. Through the evolving lens of Flow, Fin shares his insights based on a rich career as a C-level executive in large organizations, prolific author, and expert in the field of business and technical agility. Soft-spoken yet firm, he reminds us that “…[a]gile is really a thing that you are; it’s not something that you buy.” Flow, he adds, helps us move away from a very rigid methodology into something that’s more of a philosophy, a way of being.

Have a listen to find out how.

Recommended Resources

Project to Product: How to Survive and Thrive in the Age of Digital Disruption with the Flow Framework, by Mik Kersten.

Unlearn: Let Go of Past Success to Achieve Extraordinary Results, by Barry O’Reilly.

Flow: A Handbook for Change Makers, by Fin Goulding and Haydn Shaughnessy.

12 Steps to Flow, by Fin Goulding and Haydn Shaughnessy.


About Fin

Fin Goulding has become an expert in Business and Technical agility, having worked as a CIO and/or CTO in several major organizations such as Aviva, Paddy Power, lastminute.comtravelocity.com, SabreHSBC, RBS and Visa.

He has consistently been named as one of the top global CIOs and is recognized as one of the most experienced enterprise agile leaders in the world today.

Fin has been pioneering new ways of working using visualization techniques and agile practices in all areas of business in order to help organizations achieve digital transformation through cultural transformation. He has a unique perspective having worked in startups, .coms, and large-scale companies and now as Founder & CTO in his own startup called the Flow Academy.

Fin is in demand as a coach for CEOs, COOs, CIOs and CTOs and as a keynote speaker and panelist. He is constantly improving and evolving business agility practices and principles through real-world expertise.

He has co-authored two of the best-selling books on business agility: Flow: A Handbook for Change Makers, and 12 Steps to Flow

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miguel-cardona

19 / The Significance of Contributive Design

Description

As organizations move inexorably to a team-based, agile methodology, how do individual contributors effectively demonstrate what they’re working on or what they’ve accomplished? If performance is measured based solely on the team’s deliverables, how do team leaders appropriately acknowledge each member’s contribution or target their professional development? Enter the notion of contributive design, in which involvement of the individual is made clear. Contributive design fosters an environment in which team members collaborate as one, but also where they’re not necessarily dependent on others for their own outcomes.

In this episode of ITX’s Product Momentum Podcast, hosts Sean and Paul welcome Miguel Cardona, professor of design, artist, and keynote speaker at ITX’s 2nd annual ITX UX 2019: Beyond the Pixels design conference. Miguel introduces us to the notion of contributive design and its far-reaching impact – not only in the classroom, where contributive tools help him evaluate the performance of project teams while isolating the contributions of each student. Contributive design applies with equal significance in the workplace as we consider the modular nature of teams, design systems, and the user experience.

Read our blog post.

Recommended Resources

Writings and Notes from Andrew Duckworth, including “One Thing Per Page.”

Design Is Storytelling, by Ellen Lupton.

Algortihms of Oppression: How Search Engines Reinforce Racism, by Safiya Umoja Noble.

fertilegroundroc.org, an exploration of race and placemaking in Rochester, NY. In collaboration with cultural anthropologist and University of Rochester Professor Kathryn Mariner, Fertile Ground sprouts from three existing intellectual traditions: theories of space and place, urban ethnography and history, and feminist and Black geographies.


About Miguel

Miguel Cardona is an Assistant Professor at the Rochester Institute of Technology in the New Media Design (BFA) and Visual Communications Design (MFA) programs. His classes focus on user experience and interaction design for digital experiences and products. Students from these programs are highly marketable and go on to design at companies like Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Marvel, Lyft, Amazon, Nike, and numerous other high-profile product and creative agencies all over the world.

Most recently, Miguel was a foundation hire and lead designer for imgix, a San Francisco-based company that provides web developers the ability to resize and optimize images in real-time. Previously, he co-founded the Rochester, NY-based design and technology studio, Dwaiter Design. Miguel has more than 15 years’ experience designing and developing digital products, e-learning experiences, motion graphics, advertising, and interactive games for not-for-profit, educational, and B2B institutions. He was once mildly internet-famous for illustrating on coffee cups.

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Christina-Wodtke

18 / Simple Steps to Achieve High Performance

Description

We’ve been working together in teams forever, right? After all, humans are social creatures. So it only makes sense that we would come together, organize around common objectives, and apply our energies and intellect to solve problems and deliver outcomes that move our world forward. If that is so, why do so many organizations simultaneously implement dubious structures and practices that conflict with their pursuit of high-performing teams?

In this episode, Sean and Paul catch up with Christina Wodtke – professor, speaker, and author of Radical Focus – to discuss techniques that help organizations create and sustain high-performing teams. Christina has admittedly made a career out of stating the unstated, exposing the proverbial elephant in the room. Whether it’s questioning the value of meetings and status reports or how companies conduct their hiring practices and performance reviews, Christina unabashedly critiques the ways in which those same organizations treat their most important asset – and in the same breath offers remedies that address them.

Recommended Resources

The Culture Map, by Erin Meyer.

The Fearless Organization, by Amy C. Edmondson.

The Team That Managed Itself, by Christina Wodtke. [New Release!]


About Christina

Christina Wodtke trains companies to move from insight to execution as principal of her firm, Wodtke Consulting. She has led redesigns and initial product offerings for such companies as LinkedIn, Myspace, Zynga, Yahoo!, Hot Studio, and eGreetings. Christina has founded two consulting startups, a product startup, and Boxes and Arrows, an online magazine of design; and she co-founded the Information Architecture Institute.

She’s the author of 101 Theses on Design, Information Architecture: Blueprints for the Web, and her new book about OKRs, Radical Focus. Christina currently teaches the next generation of entrepreneurs at California College of the Arts and Stanford Continuing Education. She speaks everywhere from conferences to universities to boardrooms, and opines across the internet, but most often on eleganthack.com.

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kim-goodwin

17 / Human-Centered Design

Description

Product people get excited about solving problems that make users’ lives better. On that we can all agree. It’s the approach we choose to achieve that goal where differences arise. Sometimes the differences are more clear – Agile vs. Waterfall, for example. On other occasions, the difference is less obvious. Take user-centered vs. human-centered design. On their face, they seem synonymous; after all, users are human. But as we’ll hear, the difference between them is more than a mere distinction.

In this episode, hosts Sean and podcast newcomer Paul Gebel welcome Kim Goodwin, author, consultant, and a featured keynote speaker at ITX’s 2nd annual ITX UX 2019: Beyond the Pixels design conference. Kim discusses the power of human-centered design, in which product people must draw ever closer to those most familiar with the problems they face every day. It is they, she says, who hold the key to their solutions. If we are to create products that solve those problems, we need to think in terms of meeting human needs.

Read our blog post.

Recommended Resources

Designing for the Digital Age: How to Create Human-Centered Products and Services, by Kim Goodwin.

Ruined By Design: How Designers Destroyed the World, and What We Can Do About It, by Mike Monteiro.


About Kim

Kim Goodwin is the best-selling author of Designing for the Digital Age. She has spent more than 20 years in UX, both consulting and in-house. Kim helps organizations build their internal design capabilities through coaching and organizational change management.

Previously, Kim was VP of Design & General Manager at Cooper, a leading design and strategy agency in San Francisco. During her 12 years there, she led an integrated practice of interaction, visual, and industrial designers, as well as the development of the acclaimed Cooper design curriculum. As VP of Product and User Experience at PatientsLikeMe, Kim guided designers and product managers in combining a patient support network with a medical research platform.

Kim has led design and research projects in healthcare, aviation, retail, communication, financial services, consumer, enterprise, automotive, IT, and other industries. She speaks and teaches regularly at UX conferences around the world. Although Kim is based near San Francisco, she is often in another time zone, whether she’s herding cats in a conference room or photographing wildlife in places with no Internet access.

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jeff-gothelf

16 / Developing Organizational Agility

Description

Imagine a world in which we drop the labels that segregate us as Lean. As Agile. As Waterfall. As Design Thinkers. Instead, imagine a world where we build the kinds of organizations and cultures that encourage and reward learning and customer centricity, that incentivize teams to deeply understand their customers, and that ensure that we’re always delivering value on their behalf. Let that sink in.

In this episode, hosts Sean and Joe chat with Jeff Gothelf – author, coach, consultant, and a featured keynote speaker at ITX’s 2nd annual ITXUX2019: Beyond the Pixels design conference. The world Jeff hopes for may not be the one he predicts will come to pass. But it is a world that allows us to freely pick and choose the components and methodologies that work best within our respective organization.

Read our blog post.

Recommended Resources

Josh Ellman, Mind the Product.

Barry O’Reilly, Unlearn.

Sense & Respond Press, Jeff Gothelf, Josh Seiden, and Vicky Olsen, series editors.


About Jeff

Jeff Gothelf helps organizations build better products and executives build the cultures that build better products. He is the co-author of the award-winning book, Lean UX, and the Harvard Business Review Press book, Sense & Respond. Starting off as a software designer, Jeff now works as a coach, consultant, and keynote speaker helping companies bridge the gaps between business agility, digital transformation, product management and human-centered design.
 
Most recently, Jeff co-founded Sense & Respond Press, a publishing house for practical business books for busy executives.

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dan-olsen

15 / Test Assumptions to Achieve Product-Market Fit

Description

Software product development is hard enough. It’s harder still when our investment of resources is based on a set of untested assumptions. The probability that we perfectly address each of the hundreds or thousands (millions?) of assumptions, hypotheses, and decisions is super low. Once we get comfortable with the idea that many of our assumptions are wrong, we can embrace the uncertainty and engage the anxiety that comes from it.

In this episode, Sean and Joe chat with Dan Olsen, Silicon Valley-based consultant, author, speaker, and proponent of the Lean Startup approach to software product development. Dan reminds us that the surest way to eliminate anxiety is to confront its causes. Articulate your hypotheses and test them. Whatever the outcome, the evidence you gather from user testing will boost your confidence as your anxiety fades.

Recommended Resources

Whether through his consulting work, speaking engagements, or monthly Lean UX Meetup, Dan enjoys building communities of learners. He recommends checking out the following thought leaders and their work:

Make Time, by Jake Knapp.

UX for Lean Startups, by Laura Klein.

Interviewing Users, by Steve Portigal.


About Dan

Dan Olsen is an entrepreneur, consultant, author, speaker, and expert in product management and Lean Startup. At Olsen Solutions, he works with CEOs and product leaders to help them build great products and strong product teams, often as interim VP of Product.

Dan has worked with a range of businesses, from small, early-stage startups to large public companies, on a wide variety of web and mobile products. His clients include Facebook, Box, MicrosoftYouSendIt (now HighTail), Epocrates, Medallia, XING, Financial Engines, and One Medical Group.

Prior to consulting, Dan worked at Intuit, where he led the Quicken product team to record sales and profit. Dan began his career designing nuclear-powered submarines in the United States Navy. 

Dan earned a BS in electrical engineering from Northwestern University and an MBA from Stanford University. He also earned a master’s degree in industrial engineering from Virginia Tech, where he studied the Lean manufacturing principles that inspired Lean Startup. 

Dan wrote the bestseller The Lean Product Playbook. He lives in Silicon Valley, where he hosts the monthly Lean Product & Lean UX Meetup. Dan enjoys sharing ideas and comparing notes with as many people as he can.  

 

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