Prioritization tends to give some of us allusion to the “3 pigs joke”. The one when you release 3 pigs into the rival high school’s yard and you number them 1,2, and 4. Just when you think you’ve covered all the bases, there’s always just one…more…thing. Prioritization tends to give some of us allusion to the “3 pigs joke”. The one when you release 3 pigs into the rival high school’s yard and you number them 1,2, and 4. Just when you think you’ve covered all the bases, there’s always just one…more…thing.

Managing your priorities certainly has its challenges: you are trying to make a clear-cut plan, however, you don’t know for certain if it’s the right move or strategy to make. One thing every Product Manager has endeavored in his job is to be what we like to call a “Process Nazi”. The need for ranked priorities, paired with a drilled-down plan, often results in obsessing over the features of the product and the processes that come along with it.
Here are a few tips to better prioritize:

No obsession over the process

Every PM draws a somewhat “perfect” process that he abides by throughout the product journey. Unfortunately, this is a slippery slope leading straight to the overabundance of that obsession.

Value assessment vs. estimated effort

We often look at priority in terms of urgency and not value, when, most of the time, the added value is the most critical of our outcomes. Product managers look forward to accomplishing what needs to be done. Whereas, one would always tend to be more efficient in reaching the most value at as little cost as can be.

Another point is, that effort gets overlooked when we prioritize giving us that “overly ambitious flare” to every decision we make when we set unrealistic goals. That does not mean that PMs are always prioritizing urgent over value adding. But sometimes, they look at problem-solving and we think that the first appearing problem is the first to be solved. One way to fight that assumption is to simply make a problem-solution correlation to every task you tackle.

Adapt vs. Adopt

When we try to depict priorities, we always lean towards a clear plan to follow; something that shows that we’re organized and strategic. That’s why we set a ranking for things to do and we think that this ranking will draw our guidelines when it comes to developing the product. We often think that being flexible is being able to change when the circumstances dictate it. But adapting is empowered by embracing the new priorities and creating new ways to handle and manage the product in an effective manner.

[Related]: Prioritize, especially when everything is a priority

“This is top priority”: PMs keep saying that whenever they want to hack the growth of a ticket that has been bothering them for too long.Product management is something made to enjoy and embrace; minus the headaches and the sleepless nights. However, unless you make this experience seamless and smoothened out, it may be more of a pain in the butt than a fun endeavor. Join us to make your experience as exciting as possible. And leave us a comment about your recent prioritization strategies.Stay tuned for our next posts and see you soon.

Categories: Product Management

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