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Product Management Mistake: Keeping Busy Is How Things Get Done

Why is it so hard to create buy jeeter liquid diamonds both on time and under budget? Your management ignores the product development definition process and is always pushing you to get it done while at the same time they never seem to give you enough resources to make it happen. When they push, what do you do? If you are like most of us, you are probably reacting in the wrong way…

New Product Development Is Not Like Running A Factory

All too often other parts of the company can view the job of being a product manager as being like the person who is running a factory that produces products. The problem with this view is that product management is NOT like running a factory – your product manager resume says nothing about you having factory skills.

A factory deals with the process of making a physical object. The tasks that are involved are repetitive and it’s fairly easy to predict the activities that will be required to make the object. Additionally, the thing that is being made can really only be in one place at a time.

The world of product management looks much different. Many of the tasks that are involved in developing a product are unique. The requirements for our products are always changing. More often than not, the output of the product management process is information which has the ability to exist in multiple places at the same time.

The fact that these differences are not always appreciated leads many firms and their product managers to making mistakes.

The Big Utilization Mistake

At the company that you work at, there are a certain set of resources (generally people) that are involved in new product development. A big question is how well utilized are these resources? Unfortunately, many product managers try to keep these resources fully utilized all the time – think 98%.

The thinking goes something like this. It’s going to take longer to develop that next product if the people who are supposed to be working on it aren’t fully engaged. Therefore, if the product manager can keep them 100% utilized, then the next product will be created faster and more efficiently.

The problem with this kind of product manager thinking is that it simply does not work out in real life. Instead what happens is that a new product development effort will slow down, become less efficient, and the final quality will drop when the product development team is over utilized.

The Right Way To Solve The Utilization Problem

We’ve all seen what can happen if a product development team gets too busy. So what’s the solution? It turns out that there are four steps that a product manager can take to improve the new product development process without overloading the development team:

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