Product management is definitely a marathon, not a sprint. That’s true for the initial period of time it takes to get a new product off the ground, but it’s also true for the years you spend supporting a product that’s in use.
If you work on a product that your organization sells, and that product has wide market appeal your organization will have no problem allowing you to focus on that product and provide you the team and resources to make it happen.
When you work on an internal product, it is often much more difficult to continuously invest in the product to keep it maintained. At the same time, your stakeholders expect your product to be continuously updated and resemble those profit generating products that have a fully dedicated team behind them. Those same stakeholders tend to gripe, sometimes loudly, when those expectations are not met.
Add to that new comer stakeholders who don’t know the history of how the product got to the point it did, but feel free to point out every little problem and inconsistency that they notice when they use the product. It’s easy for them to think absolutely no thought went into the creation and maintenance of the product because they weren’t there when it happened.
Perhaps product management is more of an obstacle course than a marathon…
So how do you go about safely navigating that obstacle course? I’m not entirely sure, so I thought I’d see what others had to say. Here are some resources that provide a few suggestions.
Maintaining a Product After Launch
The product manager still has a large role in maintaining a product after it launches. The folks at Product Manager HQ provide a high-level overview and cover several aspects of the post-launch phase.
After product launches: how to complete the feedback loop
The launch is the start of the marketing journey, not the end goal. You now begin a cycle of listening, learning, iterating and shipping improvements based on real customer feedback instead of assumptions. Greg Davis explains what Intercom does after they launch new products or new features on existing products.
After-Launch App Support: Goes And No-Goes
Dmytro Brovkin shares some recommendations on how to maintain the popularity of your app after you launch it. Those recommendations include:
- Maintain consistency with your product updates
- Be prepared to make many small changes on an ongoing basis
- Stay in touch with your audience
These recommendations apply equally well to internal products.
What are your post-launch product activities?
A product manager’s job doesn’t stop after a new feature is released. You also need to work closely with the non-technical members of the company (customer support, operations, marketing, sales, finance, etc.) to ensure product success.
A few product management practitioners shared their response to the question “what activities take place on your team or across your organization to support the new product or feature?”
How to Satisfy Every Stakeholder In Your Next Website Redesign
At times, redesigning your website can seem like bringing a bill through congress — lots of different opinions and more than a few uninformed ones. Because of its level of visibility, your website redesign plans may attract opinions and instructions from all parts of the organization. So how do you keep all of these stakeholders happy without building a schizophrenic site?
Well, it helps to know what’s behind each person’s perspective and to keep the customer experience at the center of all decisions. Meghan Keaney Anderson takes a look at a few of the most common stakeholders in any website redesign, and examine their motivations, their common complaints, and the thing that’s likely to make them happiest when all is said and done.