In a previous post I discussed the famous amazon “press release backwards” technique for product teams - designed for customer-facing “product” teams — teams that create a product or service to be consumed by either B2C or B2B customers, the technique is in my opinion a valuable exercise that forces teams to consider the value of the thing they’re making for their intended audience BEFORE they start working on it.
Indeed, the idea behind this process is that if the teams can’t tell a super compelling story about the product, then the concepts they’re considering are too complicated or probably not worth the effort developing. It also forces the team to start with empathy for the customer rather than a set of features. It forces the team to understand the purpose of the work they’re doing rather than just the building and delivery aspects.
A few suggestions to enhance the technique
Obviously there isn’t a “one size fits all” for product development teams, and while working on a hard digital transformation effort for a global non-tech company, I found that the following had to be addressed:
Suggestion 1: More focus on key outcomes, which are the measurable changes in customer behavior that tell us we’ve delivered something of value, designed and implemented it well and that it solves a real need for a real customer.
Suggestion 2: Add in the FAQs a discussion of the collaboration challenges the team needs to overcome – for example projects usually don’t see the light of day without direct contact from legal, marketing, brand, risk, compliance and multiple other teams.
As a result, here are a few additions to the “Amazon press release backwards” famous template for product teams to consider when working on new initiatives and products – let me know what you think!
Let me know what you think!
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My name's phil mora and I blog about the things I love: fitness, hacking work, tech and anything holistic.
Head of Digital Product
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