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Skip to 0 minutes and 4 seconds The way we build strong, durable products that are desirable for the customer and profitable for the company has changed quite a lot just in the last few years. And this week, we’re going to focus on seven key methods that are extremely practical and they will help you build better products. We’re going to start out by kind of framing this against the type of product management role that you’re in right now so you can think about how to apply these and where to focus based on your particular role.

Skip to 0 minutes and 32 seconds Then, this venture design framework is something that I use to frame a lot of these methodology things around and, I think, it will just help you understand when and where to apply some of these things and how they fit together because they very much do. And we’re going to look at seven theories. First, we’re going to look at agile, which you’re probably familiar with, and increasingly, agile is a workhorse for applied innovation which makes it very valuable to the Product Manager.

Skip to 0 minutes and 56 seconds It is a great way to, not only get software built, but layer in a disciplined approach to design and discovery about the customer, to testing propositions through Lean Startup, as well as transitioning those things forward into small batch iterations where you can make sure that what you’re building is actually mattering to the customer. We’re going to look at applications of design thinking around both how you explore new ideas and continue to stay abreast of what problems really matter to your customer and then also how you translate those things into vivid actionable discussable inputs with your development team.

Skip to 1 minute and 35 seconds We’re going to talk about the hook framework which is a way to explore and build habits around your product so that as the user is using your product they’re building habits and you’re changing the way that they work or the way that they play around your product and you’re understanding how the customer really is behaving and not just how you think they should behave based on your propositions. We’re going to look at Lean Startup and how we run experiments to test for value before we over-invest in software that nobody wants. This will put you in the hot seat but it will help you build much better product.

Skip to 2 minutes and 9 seconds Your development team’s going to love you because you’re going to create a lot less waste and a lot less extra features. We’re going to look at how we create really great story, user stories, from those things and organize them into story maps to create a shared view of what we’re trying to achieve for the customer and use prototypes, both to talk about the way we might approach an appropriate and usable interface for the customer, and, as if that wasn’t enough, we’re going to show you how to move those prototypes into early stage usability testing so you iterate on that before you even start building software, leaving yourself time to experiment and make sure you iterate to the right interface patterns for your user.

Skip to 2 minutes and 49 seconds And, we’re going to look at how this applies to consumer products and the marketing process through the use of qualitative and quantitative pairings against a user funnel. And, we’re going to look at how we manage these things with big customers in case you are currently, or you will be in in the future, that product team where you’re selling to large customers and you’re selling on kind of an account by account basis. So that, we’re going to look at how these matter to you, how to execute these methods, and then how to apply them across both consumer and business products.

Ready for week 2

In this video, Alex introduces seven key methods for building better products, following his Venture Design Framework. Are you familiar with any of these processes?

-Agile -Design Thinking -Hook Framework -Lean Startup -Story Mapping -Prototyping

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This video is from the free online course:

Digital Product Management

Darden School of Business, University of Virginia