Retrospectives: Key to Product Planning

A regularly scheduled product retrospective is an important part of the product manager’s job. As we close out the calendar year, it’s a good time to complete this work.

What’s the best way to to it?  Some take a “rear-view-only” pragmatic approach: report on release delivery, revenue and units sold. Here are our best tips for a more strategic, forward-looking approach.

1. Review the four P’s for each product in your product line.  You’re looking for KPI variance to plan, but beyond that you’re looking for changes in the market and in competitive actions that point to new threats and opportunities.

2. Update your product strategy as needed for the next time period (year, half-year or quarter).  This is the fo

Product manager's job: retrospective and product planning

rward-looking part – map the opportunities you uncovered in your KPI and 4P analysis, and build them into your product strategy.

3. Communicate the results to the product team and executives.  Since we’re at calendar year end, it’s a good idea to communicate your findings and recommendations and get any necessary executive approval or input on your plans before the January sales meeting.

If you’d like a more detailed set of guidelines for this process, just email us for your own copy of “Pivotal PM’s Mastering the Product Retrospective.”

Also, you can get more help with your yearly product planning – join our next Product Management Intensive™ course to build key product life cycle skills or register for a convenient, interactive Distance Learning course. See Pivotal PM’s product management training options here.

Posted in General / Opinion, Pivot Point Newsletter, Product Management Tips  |  Leave a comment

Leave a reply

%d bloggers like this: