The problem with ‘roadmap first’ teams
Ariel Verber

What’s particularly important here for me is the value that comes from focusing on user outcomes over technical implementation milestones. Focusing on outcomes gives teams the freedom to creatively solve problems, and allows them to work to the point when the problem is really solved, rather than just plugging away at a prescribed solution.

It’s really easy to talk to users, leadership, sales, etc. in order to get suggestions for “what to build next”, but that process doesn’t lead to a product team truly feeling like they have ownership of a solution. Rather, working to achieve outcomes that key stakeholders have agreed represent success, teams can develop their own ideas of how to achieve that success and can truly own their success or failure.

It’s important to tell a team that they’re both responsible for the success or failure of their product, according to agreed upon metrics, but to give them the freedom to iterate on a solution that truly solves the problem. Without that freedom, you’re left with a field of non-optimal solutions that have been unenthusiastically executed on by teams that neither understood the impact of nor measured that solution’s success and usability.

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