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Why Prioritization Will Make or Break Your Product

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“People think focus means saying yes to the thing you’ve got to focus on. But that’s not what it means at all. It means saying no to the hundred other good ideas.” — Steve Jobs, Apple

Product prioritization is what keeps most of our product management community up at night.

Ultimately, our aim is to build successful products that solve our user’s problems.

All while trying to answer three seemingly simple questions: What to build, when and why.

But make no mistake, prioritization is much more than coming up with a list of features or initiatives and assigning it to a roadmap.

It’s a constant process of finding the right combination of features and initiatives to allocate your limited resources to solve a significant problem, aiming to turn revenue.

That’s why embarking on this journey will involve saying “NO” to an avalanche of great ideas, and defending your decisions from agendas, and opinions.

Sourcing the right insights will play a key role, and leveraging them alongside a quantitative or qualitative prioritization framework will allow you to make data-informed decisions. Prioritization without data is a collection of opinions.

A good prioritization framework and decision making process sets a clear route towards your goals, allowing your team to create an effective roadmap that leads to market fit, while aligning with your company goals.

Prioritization process vs gut-feeling decisions

One thing is for sure: making decisions based on gut feeling and subjective preferences (or misinterpreted KPIs) from other managers will definitely not help you build a product that delights your users, nor will it overfill your company’s bank account.

A prioritization process isn’t complete unless you have covered these four pillars.

There is a clear pattern among successful products.

They have a strong foundation based on a defined prioritization process that always includes and iterates on four pillars. Therefore, we will cover why managing insights, defining a prioritization strategy based on the product, executing prioritization and roadmapping our decisions are essential.

There is a clear pattern to be followed in order to build a powerful prioritization process. It always includes and iterates on four pillars that we will cover extensively.

These are: Managing insights, defining a prioritization strategy, executing Prioritization ("what to build") and Roadmapping ("when to build it).

After reading this book, you’ll have gained a full understanding and you’ll be able to build products your users actually want and are willing to pay for.

Get our Mastering Prioritization eBook

Learn how to prioritize by making it a simple process, to build products that stand out. Learn more about how to source insight, choose the right prioritization framework and much more.

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