Product managers are responsible for delivering game-changing products with strong product-market fit that will ultimately help grow the business. To be successful, every product decision requires buy-in from key stakeholders at the speed of business.
In a recent webinar, Brian Tran, Usertesting’s Director of Product Management, shared creative ways and unique insights into how he leverages the UserTesting platform for product discovery and validation to make informed decisions swiftly and confidently.
We had a great Q&A session with Brian and included some of our favorite questions below. You can also watch the on-demand webinar here. Enjoy!
What’s essential for earlier-stage products versus more mature products?
That’s a great question because the challenges that you face at earlier stages versus later stages are different. With earlier stage products, really what you're trying to find is product-market fit.
It's really the dynamic of where you are as a company during the earlier stage that plays a significant role. If you're a really, really early-stage company where—maybe it's three people—you're just so busy doing other things that you might forget to connect back with the customer. The solution here is to embed quick ways for every member within your company to continue to talk to customers and still keep up with rapid growth.
For later-stage companies, where you've got a mature, revenue-generating product, the challenge is continually being disruptive or self-disruptive before some other early-stage startup or company disrupts you.
For me, the best way to do this is by connecting back to your customers to understand, end-to-end, the other needs your customers might have—even outside the scope of the products you currently have.
What are the biggest challenges to getting everyone on the team to be customer-focused?
The biggest challenge is getting other folks in your organization easy, consistent access to customers. Whether they're a product manager, designer, engineer, marketer, or any other role, people care about the products that they're building.
The sooner you’re able to get your teams immersed in customer feedback the better. By sharing a video of someone struggling when using your product or customer testimony that harps on how painful a certain thing is, you’ll see a change in your team’s demeanor and desire to talk to customers almost immediately.
Was there a process for getting buy-in from stakeholders when bringing on the jobs-to-be-done methodology?
There's definitely a lot of evangelism that comes into that, and you can't necessarily convince everybody all at once. One of the things that we did was identify within our team and our organization the key evangelists who really believe in the jobs-to-be-done framework and want to try it out. Then we have them go and actually try it out, show the results, and explain the benefits from that experiment.
Action is much more important than theory when it comes to implementing a new framework or methodology. Just like how you build a product, iterate and learn the process that works best for your business.
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