Measuring success through innovation

Photo: Baron von Flickrhoffen
The time required to meet most project deadlines is usually underestimated. There are ways to fight that like padding estimates and shifting resources, but deadlines are meant to be missed. And there are always new challenges and opportunities that popup midstream that you’ll never be able to predict. #

  1. *groan*

    No, actually, product managers shouldn’t be graded on adding features.

    The problem with that sort of approach is that you’ve got feature laden applications and services that never really get the sort of development they should. As a real, live fer’instance, yesterday I was talking with one producer about how he could add a new feature to the platform. I asked him what his goal was. He told me. I then pointed out that his platform JUST LAUNCHED a feature that did exactly what he wanted to do, required less maintainence, and if promoted and tweaked properly, could revolutionize the industry.

    What producers should be measured by is the level of impact their efforts made on the product. Innovation is one aspect, product improvement and reliability another, increased traffic and “stickiness” a third.

    People don’t really need a WiFi-enabled, 3.2 megapixel toaster. They want a tasty bagel in the morning.

  2. Why not let the customers and the market decide?

    This reminds me of the challenge of putting measures on developers — does lines of code equal good code? Not very often. Pay-for-feature has same issue (bloat as JR points) and I can imagine the debate now over what ‘is’ a feature.

    Shouldn’t the value of the features selected and resultant roadmap be traced back to the overall success of the company (revenues, share, customer loyalty) or, if granularity is needed, also have the customers who requested and rate the feature implementation relative to their needs.