Create Personas with the Help of the Engineers

TL; DR: Create Personas with the Help of the Engineers

Creating valuable software requires knowing the customer—we all agree on that, right? The first question that then comes to mind is how to support this product discovery process in a meaningful manner in an agile environment? And the second question follows swiftly: who shall participate in the process—designers and business analysts or the engineers, too?

Read on and learn why personas are useful for product discovery purposes, how to create personas, and why the complete team—including the engineers—needs to participate in their creation.

Create Personas with the Help of the Engineers — Age of Product

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Product Discovery Anti-Patterns Leading to Failure

TL;DR: Product Discovery Anti-Patterns

Scrum has proven to be an effective product delivery framework for digital products like applications or apps. However, Scrum is equally suited to build the wrong product efficiently as its Achilles heel has always been the product discovery part. What product discovery part, you may think now. And this is precisely the point: The product owner miraculously identifies what is the best way to proceed as a team by gating and prioritizing the product backlog. How that is supposed to happen is nowhere described in the Scrum Guide. Consequently, when everyone is for himself, product discovery anti-patterns emerge.

From sunk costs, HIPPO-ism, my-budget-my-features to self-fulfilling prophecies — learn more about the numerous product discovery anti-patterns that can manifest themselves when you try to fill Scrum’s product discovery void.

Age of Product: Product Discovery Anti-Patterns Leading to Failure

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70 Scrum Master Theses

TL;DR: The Scrum Master Theses

The following 70 scrum master theses describe the role of the scrum master from a holistic product creation perspective.

The scrum master theses cover the role of the scrum master from product discovery to product delivery in hands-on practical manner. On the one side, they address typical scrum ceremonies such as sprint planning, sprint review, and the retrospective. On the other hand, the scrum master theses also cover, for example, the relationship with the product owner, they deal with agile metrics, and how to kick-off an agile transition, thus moving beyond the original scrum guide.

Scrum Master Theses – Age of Product

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App Prototyping with Absolute Beginners – Agile Experiments

TL;DR: App Prototyping with Absolute Beginners

Yes, even absolute beginners can prototype an app. And learn a lot about product management, product design and user experience along the way. It is a low-cost exercise that will significantly improve communication within your organization.

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Ebookmakr Failure: The Fallacy of Knowing What to Build – The Post Mortem

Executive Summary – Lessons Learned from Ebookmakr’s Failure:

  1. Love the problem more than your solution.
  2. Don’t push too far your dreams of China in your hand.
  3. Use prototyping tools such as Marvel when running user interviews. (More here: Four Lessons Learned From Making Customer Value Your Priority.)
  4. Be careful with the selection process for user interviews: You might end up picking those that will support your vision – it’s a self-fulfilling prophecy trap.
  5. Beware of false positives in user interviews.
  6. Never start writing a single line of code before an appropriate number of customers signed up. (For clarification: Customers are paying users.)
  7. Never spend money on developing a prototype when you’re not working full-time on growing the user-base and increasing customer value.
  8. Be patient and give your product the time it needs.
  9. Always make branded t-shirts and wear them later regularly to preserve the recollection of the disaster. (See below.)
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Four Lessons Learned From Making Customer Value Your Priority

TL;DR: Four Lessons Learned From Making Customer Value Your Priority

Building a valuable, usable and feasible product does not happen overnight. These are my four core learnings from focusing on customer value, looking back at the projects I have been pursuing over the years.

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