Product Management Terms You Should Get To Know
May 16, 2018
May 16, 2018
One of the biggest killers in any industry is jargon and acronyms that require you to be an expert in the space to follow a conversation or read about the topic. As a product manager, you need to be aware of the terminology you are using within your product and support tools to ensure you are speaking the language of your customer and making it easy to translate your technical terms into more user friendly terms. Luckily at Product HQ our product is built for product managers so the terms we use should align with terms many product managers are used to hearing however as we also work with a number of tech founders and startups who have less experience in product management and diving in head first we need to be aware of what terms we use and how easy we make it to ramp up on our terminology.
Within your platforms and support guides you should always maintain a glossary of terms which can be reinforced as help or hover tips on fields, more detailed explanations in instructions and more written out guides on your support site. For Product HQ, here are the terms we use and how we apply them within our product.
Discovery: Within Product HQ, discovery is the phase where you can research different avenues to generate ideas. Ideas for a product comes from all different kids of sources such as support tickets, competitor analysis, business and product vision objectives and even product usage information. Within Product HQ you can review a variety of sources to create your own ideas for your product based on the information you provide.
Objectives: Your Objectives can range from smaller goals such as increasing the usage of a given feature to larger long term objectives such as increasing your paid conversion or decreasing churn. Objectives can be both business and product strategy based to help you guide your decision making on what you are building and ensure the features that align with your objectives get weighted so they stand out in a crowd.
Ideas: Ideas are suggestions from customers, team members and any stakeholder on ways to make the product better. These can be created from a variety of sources and each idea can be categorized into an area to help you bucket your product and see ideas for a given bucket. You can choose to promote an idea into a feature, combine the idea with an existing feature or if the idea is not aligned with your product strategy, you can choose to dismiss the idea and close the feedback loop with the customer.
Features: These are enhancements or updates to your product that you feel you should move forward with at some point in the future. Features are confirmed ideas that align with your product strategy. You can bucket features into windows that you hope to implement, park a feature for the future or add a feature to an upcoming release on your product roadmap. Within a feature, you can also add requirements to better define what the feature is and the specific changes needed to implement the change.
Releases: A Release is a group of Features that have been put together to make up a logical group of work for your team to implement based on the start and end dates you defined within your release. Releases can have milestones to help define key dates that you want to track about the release such as development complete date, testing dates and release date.
The list above is a great example of glossary that as a product manager I may take for granted the terminology however the terms may be used differently in different settings so it is always a great idea to level set your terms for your product and how you are applying them within your product platform.