November 30

How to scale (4 of 5) – architecture

In my previous posts, I have talked about how start-ups scale, how to structure products teams and how to scale process.   Jez Humble suggests that architecture and culture are critical to scaling. On architecture Jez argues for: Build systems that are designed to be deployed easily into multiple environments, can detect and tolerate failures in […]

November 30

Leadership hack – the role of Product Owner

In my previous leadership post, I discussed the role of the Chief Product Officer. In this post, I want to focus on product leadership at the team level.  There is much discussion over the what a product owner or product manager does, and if there are differences between the two.    While there are many […]

November 28

Leadership hack – what does a Chief Product Officer do?

In this post, I want to share my thoughts on what a Chief Product Officer/Head of Product does.  Recently I moderated a ScaleUp Heros panel discussion in the role of  Head of Product (you can find it on LinkedIn, Medium and  Facebook).  The host Ryan Foland and exceptional panellists John Connolly, Courtney Wylie and Ben Kim explored product […]

November 22

How to scale (3 of 5) – Agile (process)

In the earlier posts, I explored how successful companies scale, and ways to structure product teams.   In this post, I look at execution – how to get code shipped. Modern software development (Agile) differs from historic approaches (waterfall).   Agile is a commonly used term but is often embellished and miss-understood.  It is important to separate […]

November 16

How to scale (2 of 5) – Product team structure

Welcome to the second part of my ‘How to scale’ series (you can find part 1 here). One of the first objectives when thinking about structuring your product teams is to ensure that Product is separated from Core engineering.  The core engineering team can then focus on creating architecture that can scale, and services that can […]

November 15

What you could learn from ‘Building successful communities of practice’ by Emily Webber (2016, 70 pages)

Emily argues that to be a resilient and happy organisation you must invest in the learning and development of its people as a whole.  In her book, she argues that communities of practice are the best way to encourage learning and development. “Communities of practice are groups of people who share a concern or passion […]

November 09

How to scale (1 of 5) – the journey from garage band to Glastonbury

“Software ends up being shaped by the structure of the organisation that develops it” Conway’s Law One of the most animated discussions I often have with founders, CEOs and other product leaders is how to structure product teams when a company grows.  While I think this is incredibly important (as Conway noted) I feel it misses […]

November 02

Beginners guide to crypto

Bitcoin, crypto and distributed ledger technology (DLT) are hot topics.  Very simply there are all just a form of a database which stores data in a very secure way.  They do this using in a fundamentally different way to historical databases.  The two main differences are: Where the data is stored How the data is […]

November 01

Product leadership part 3 – leadership

Leadership is a highly ambiguous and contested topic.  If you want to explore leadership, and how it’s meaning has changed over time, see here.  Briefly, in a dynamic environment with highly skilled people (i.e., at Monese), leaders need to support and guide their followers, rather than tell them what to do.  However, leaders need to ensure that people are […]

November 01

Product leadership part 2 – getting things done

“Actual productivity = potential productivity – coordination & motivation loss” Rich Kalgradd However, productivity is not the most important factor in team or company success.  Like running a race, you will not win by running the fastest in the wrong direction.  If you have chosen the right direction, .e., made a good decision about what […]

November 01

Product leadership part 1 – making great decisions

Product Leaders (PL) need to ensure that teams are building the most valuable experiences for customers and the company.  To do this, you need to find the right problem and then find a pragmatic solution.  Whether the solution should be executed, will depend on whether it is more or less valuable than your other options. Finding […]

November 01

What does a product leader do?

Product leaders delight customers in hard-to-copy, margin-enhancing ways.  Gibson Biddle, VP Product Netflix   In my experience product leaders (PL, may also be called product owner or managers) lead the teams that build amazing experiences for customers.  PL’s understand existing and target customers, the companies strategic context and then translate this into a prioritised list of […]

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