Tag Archives: project management

10 points for those who are transitioning from project to product environments

Here are 10 key points to help those who are transitioning from projects to products

1) In projects, we deliver to one client, where as products get delivered to a market segment.

2) Inorder to build great products, we need people of the highest technical capabilities, where as in projects, the technical capabilities of people may not be the highest. This difference is very clear when we compare product companies to project delivery organizations.

3) Product teams, very often have to deal with millions of lines of legacy code, if they are working in very large established products. In startups, the challenges are different.

4)  In project based organizations, very often the teams may be following waterfall model for software development, where as most of the product companies have either transitioned or transitioning to agile.

5) In waterfall models, the predominant managerial style is command and control, and at the same time the desired managerial style in product based organizations is that of a servant leader. Some product companies promote ‘manager as a host’ styles, where everyone else is trated as a guest, and the manager ensures that they are comfortable. A variant of servant leadership.

6) Since the quality of engineering talent is the best in product companies, it is absurd to tell tell them how to do things. Explain the scope of work, and give them the freedom to choose the best approach to accomplish it. It is a kind of leading from behind, whereas in project based organizations, the predominant style is leading from the front.

7) In product companies, the requirements evolve over a peiod of time. Requirements are allowed to grow. In project based organizations, the focus is on freezing the requirements.

8) In majority of the product based organizations, test automation is in a higly matured state. Without test automation it is very difficult to achieve the desired quality levels, especially with voluminous code base.

9) In project based organizations, it is very difficult to justify the investment on test automation, becuase projects are unique and very often sigle time assignments. The predominant testing style is manual testing.

10) In product teams, the manager is only as good as his team. In project based organizations, the managers tend to position them as better than the rest.

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From outsourcing hub to product development hub

WordPress disqualified my earlier blog with more than 1000 followers and nearly 300000 visits. This was due to violation of their policies. To the best of my knowledge, it was unintentional. Everything is for good. That gives me an opportunity to blog afresh, and this time more focused towards management excellence starting at a personal level and then moving to team and organization.

Sincere management rethinking is required to move from the status of followers to leaders, especially when the third world is becoming the hub of product development. This calls for rapid innovation based on serious introspection of the current statuesque based on compliance and conformance.  Individuals and teams need the space to take some risks and cut loose. It is risky, and one can fail. The systems must be conducive for risk taking. Questions must be asked about the validity of our conventional processes, which will not hold good for the new era. Fast failures and learning must be promoted. I know that this is not easy, and at the same time, without these the transformation from project space to product space will be incomplete.

threebirdsflying

I did not study well when I was in the university, and ever since I got my Bachelor’s degree, I was continuously studying books and learning from my on the job experiences. Some of the books when I read them last, was slightly ahead of their time, at least for this part of the world (India). Another possibility is the fact that I was not matured enough to understand the meaning between the lines when I read them first. Now, after three decades of work as team member, manager, profit centre head, freelancer, entrepreuner, agile practirioner, project management trainer, consultant, husband and father, I think I am ready to probe the inner meaning of the print.  So I have started going through them once again, with a research mindset, and I check the applicability of the concepts in the present day. I will be sharing my journey through the pages of the books in my personal library and the thoughts it triggers through this blog of mine.

Abrachan

abrachan.work@gmail.com

0091 9895372115

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