Platform-lever Mistakes

7 Common Mistakes About Platform-Levers

What’s not a Product-lever in Product Line Strategy When teaching product line strategy, I hear managers argue about what is and isn’t a platform-lever. To aid the discussion I offer two quick tests.  The first test is whether the factor in question can cut across cross multiple products. The second test is whether the factor […]

Jon-to-be-done

Jobs-to-be-Done and Product Line Strategy

Jobs-to-be-Done and Product Line Strategy Jobs Theory suggests people don’t buy products and services. Instead, the theory says people “hire” products and services to achieve an outcome – a job done. Recognizing how customers “hire” products helps marketers to better understand buyer decisions and choices. The “Job” ties direct to outcome measures[1]. And these measures […]

What is a Product Line Roadmap?

How Product Line Roadmaps Differ From Product Roadmaps And Why You Need Both A product line roadmap is a timeline graphic that communicates how a team intends to carry out a product line strategy. It shows milestones and key relationships between strategy parts. At least one platform-lever[1] is central to most product line strategies. Teams […]

Informing Innovation through Product Line Strategizing and Roadmapping

Innovation can drive business growth. It’s a key to every organization’s well-being. But many companies carry out innovation haphazardly. They’re more likely to count on serendipity, not strategic thinking, to drive gains from innovation. Unfortunately, management teams have little clarity on why, how, or when to advance product offerings. No wonder Harvard Professor Clayton Christensen […]

Good Portfolio Management Includes Front-end Work

If you’re interested in NPD and R&D portfolio management, here is an important insight: Most Portfolio Management presentations discuss only development projects. They do not show, analyze, or rationalize front-end work. Anyone new to product development might assume Portfolio Management should only be about products under development. But if that’s all, then portfolio management misses its greatest opportunity for […]

The Misdirected Guidance of “Portfolio Balance”

I have a simple message for everyone involved in product development. This message is especially important for PMOs. These are the manager’s responsible for analyzing project portfolios. They calculate resources and priorities to determine who should work on which projects. “Portfolio Balance” is misguided. The problem is no one knows what the “balance” should be. […]

Fighting Evil Complexity Costs

Smart Product Line Strategies & Roadmaps Accounting can be as thrilling as getting teeth pulled. Cost accounting, however, is a skill product developers must get their arms around. This is the black art of calculating how much products cost to develop, make and sell. I call it a black art not because of the easily […]