Product and Program Management
Product Management

This workshop covers Agile product management from Product Visioning to Agile Roadmapping to Release Planning including Epic and user story creation, Minimum Viable Increment creation, backlog creation and grooming, and iteration planning. The workshop provides participants with an opportunity to gain experience with these activities using one of your real projects facilitated by an experienced Agile Coach.

The workshop can be used as the initial work to prepare for starting a new Agile team or project or it can be used to learn new Agile techniques while taking a fresh look at an in-flight project. The workshop can also be used with a project that is being considered but not yet funded to flesh out the vision and create estimates that can help with the funding decision.

Depending on the nature and scope of the project, the artifacts produced during the workshop may be sufficient to create a backlog that could be used to actually start an Agile project. If you are planning to use the deliverables from this workshop to start an Agile project, additional backlog grooming and planning may be required. The next steps are up to you. You can either engage an Agile Coach or use the experience gained in the workshop to continue the process on your own.

Who Should Attend

Everyone involved in the Agile Team involved in the training:

  • Management
  • Product managers, product owners, business analysts
  • Designers
  • Developers
  • Testers
  • DBA’s
  • Technical writers
  • Project manager, scrum master

Pre-requisite: Any 2-day introduction to Agile such as Agile Whole Team Training

Workshop Outline

Building products incrementally – a key difference in Agile product management is building products incrementally, whether we deliver incrementally or not. Getting the value of Agile succeeds or fails on this point. This section sets the groundwork for the rest of the workshop.

Product visioning – A product vision sets the direction and guides the Scrum team. It is the overarching goal everyone must share – Product Owner, Scrum Master, team, management, customers and other stakeholders. Creating a compelling product vision involves a number of activities including: product segmentation, creation of lightweight personas and use case scenarios, writing Epics, determining Minimum Viable Increments (MVIs), and user story mapping.

Product segmentation – a product can be broken up into multiple segments which aids in the creation of Epics, User stories, and MVIs. A useful framework for this is Geoffrey Moore’s classic “bowling pin” strategy.

Personas and Use Cases – in preparation for user story mapping, participants will create “empathy maps” which are a fast way to create lightweight personas, and sketch out a few use case scenarios.

User story mapping – this is a useful technique for elaborating a product vision in the form of Epics and user stories originally created by Jeff Patton. Backlog creation, backlog grooming, iteration planning – performing the necessary prioritization, estimation, story writing, and Epic/story splitting to create an iteration worth of ready stories.

Agile Roadmapping – Agile roadmapping and release planning go hand-in-hand. An Agile roadmap is like a traditional roadmap in that it sets expectations for what is coming next and at what time, but it is composed of Epics and MVIs in the form of a high-level backlog. This topic also covers how customer/stakeholder interaction changes to best leverage an Agile roadmap.

Release planning – the release plan sets the timeline for the next few releases using a high level content plan which is a flexible framework for iteration planning. Includes planning for release activities.

Product and Program Management

Product Management

This course covers the broader subject of product management within an Agile context. In some organizations, the product management work will be done by one or more product owners. In others, it will be done by a combination of product managers and product owners working together. It depends entirely on the number of customers and whether they are primarily external or internal.

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Agile Product Lifecycle

This course focuses on the tandem play of Product Management and Program Management; and their interplay with the Product Lifecycle. As we grow beyond the focus on delivery teams, we must learn to use Agile for the Product Planning and Delivery effort also. This is not often taught or even understood and so some of the concepts here can be truly transformative.

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