Having a clear long-term vision is crucial for any organization to guide decision-making, but translating that vision into business goals, metrics, and product roadmaps requires a well-thought-out strategy that balances and aligns four key pillars: performance measurement and goal setting, team structures and empowerment, rewards and incentives, and corporate culture. This course will take Chief Product Officers and their direct reports into how they can close the gap between long term vision and big ideas and unleashing product design that delights customers and stakeholders.
A big picture, clear, long-term vision for any organization (start up or incumbent organization) is crucial for guiding all decision-making. However, translating that vision into overarching business goals, metrics and derived product road maps requires dedicated effort and a well-thought-out strategy. Company performance is either hindered or enabled by a set of connected systems, policies and behaviors that will either accelerate towards the vision or create significant resistance or worse.
One effective way to align an organization’s operations with its vision is by implementing a an organizational architecture template that centers around what we call the four key pillars: performance measurement and setting goals, team structures, org charts and empowerment, rewards and incentives, and corporate culture. These pillars are grounded in a micro-economic understanding of human behavior and are essential for fostering long-term growth and performance. It is important that they are all balanced and work together in harmony. Product development that’s faithful to the vision and big ideas will either be met with four pillars that enable successful new products to thrive or damage your brand with all stakeholders like Wells Fargo did.
One example of a leader who successfully applied this approach is CEO Satya Nadella of Microsoft. By focusing on these four pillars, he was able to transform the company into one of the most valuable in the world. Too often leaders simply change an element of culture or a piece of performance evaluation and there is a breakdown. Satya reset Microsoft’s business model through a go to market strategy as he optimized the four pillars. Once in place, Microsoft began to unleash an effective product strategy that now rivals Apple’s and routinely encourages product plans that are bold with outstanding user experiences.
When starting to map out a strategy to bring your company closer to its vision, it’s important not to jump straight into planning and execution. Instead, it’s crucial to first develop a deep understanding of your target customers, as well as a strong connection to your company’s values. For product management to thrive all four pillars must work in accord with one another.
Only with this understanding and connection can you create a framework that is aligned with the vision statement and big ideas that must get done—- and that the team can buy into and rally around.
It’s important to be mindful of the relationships between the different components of the framework, as well as how they interact with each other. The corporate culture, for example, needs to be aligned with the incentives and rewards systems, which in turn must support the team structures and goals. Every piece of the framework must be grounded in customer needs and in sync to ensure that it is functioning properly and bringing the organization closer to its vision. Prioritization comes when the four pillars reinforce one another.
Product teams and sales teams seek to be motivated by a thoughtful structure like the 4 pillars that unleashes product differentiation and delights the target audience.
- Understand what must be featured and down-selected onto strategic goals/strategic plans/ or strategy maps including: company goals, customer needs, values, metrics (KPis or OKRs), business strategy, initiatives, big ideas, differentiation strategy) and more.
- Drill down into each of the four pillars and how they must reinforce one another. What are the timeless principles you should employ when considering: 1) performance measurement, setting goals, 2) establishing team structures, org charts and empowerment, 3) rewards, punishments and incentives, and corporate culture (norms, values, behaviors and assumptions).
- Understand the power of incentives to inspire your product teams.
- Bring the vision into focus by identifying clear, actionable milestones that align with the strategy and move towards achieving the vision in a tangible way, with time-bound stretch goals set over the next 1, 3-5, and 10 years (for existing, adjacent and new markets).
- Motivating product leaders by establishing clear objectives and key results (OKRs) for the next year and quarter, ensuring they are meaningful and focused, with key results that balance output, outcome, quality, and learning for sustainable progress.
- Activate the cascading OKRs throughout the organization by considering the teaming strategy that best fits the company’s structure, customer value streams, and product/service architecture, with decision-rights and decentralization mapped to accountability and “do and review cycles.”
- How to message and communicate the four pillars and their connection to your strategy to all stakeholders.
- How chief product officers and their product managers can establish healthy “do and review cycles” that drive transparency and accountability.
- Drive consistent behaviors of the teams by understanding and managing the rewards and punishments pillar, with a “fail fast and learn fast” orientation celebrated and not discouraged in the compensation and rewards system.
- Lectures 0
- Quizzes 0
- Duration 4 weeks
- Skill level All levels
- Language English
- Students 0
- Assessments Yes