A product manager has many responsibilities, yet he or she is does not do everything, is not responsible for everything and does not feature all possible character traits. Here is a list of what a product manager is not:
- A product manager isn’t a techie
- A product manager isn’t a marketer
- A product manager isn’t a product owner
- A product manager isn’t an agile fascist
- A product manager isn’t a data analyst or user researcher
- A product manager isn’t the boss (or la patron)
I might add that the product manager should understand everything the other guys do, even if he does not do it himself. Read the full article for further information.
The Agile Alliance provides a guide to agile practices online for product managers, scrum masters, team members, management and anyone else interested. It is a nice reference that I was not aware of before, but I will surely come back later when it comes to explaining agile methodologies to the team.
A nice reference to the basic Scrum vehicles Epic, User Story, Sprint and Version can be found at Atlassian’s article Epics, stories, versions, and sprints. When having to explain them to new agile developers/managers/product guys, this article might be worth a read.
Daniel Elizalde has some very insightful points on how to avoid product managers’ nightmares. He also mentions: the cures:
- The MVP must fit to the timeframe
- You need to be realistic about your team capabilities
- Include a project manager (yes, although I propose to distinguish between project managers and product managers, a dedicated product/project manager is useful in large development projects)
- Use agile methods to reduce risks
Read the article How to Avoid a Product Manager’s Worst Nightmare here.
I came across a case study of how to estimate and slice stories in a real-world scenario. Everyone knows Adobe, and this is how they do it: Using Vertical Slicing and Estimation to make Business Decisions at Adobe.
The case study presents an actual problem which needs to be solved, and Adobe did not ignore it.