Daily Archive: March 1, 2005

What is Product Management?

I just came across an interesting article that discusses the Product Management role.  As you can see from this post it’s quite topical, so I have commented on some extracts below.

What is Product Management?

Most people accept that “product management” is a term used to describe the sum of diverse activities performed in the interest of delivering a particular product to market. Such a broad definition, used by many companies today, is the root of much grief because it dilutes the professional focus necessary to achieve successful results and allows virtually any product-related task to be assigned to the product manager.

I agree that this definition is too broad,  I believe we address it in my company by assigning project managers to do the delivery management and focusing on ensuring that the lifecycle management activities can be achieved effectively, rather than trying to do them all ourselves! 

The overall perceived obstacle that the typical product manager encounters is the pervasive lack of professional focus. One can be adequate at many things, but it is difficult to excel at many. Many product managers therefore view themselves as trapped in a never-ending juggling routine. Having too many tasks to juggle eventually …


I am currently considering my career options.  After a year working part time I believe I have a very sound understanding of the opportunities and constraints associated with Adult Onset Still Disease and its affect on work. 

Very briefly the good:

  • I have a lot of time for learning and maintaining my expertise (in addition to my formal working day) and for thinking and reviewing
  • This equips me well for advisory and planning roles
  • I work an extended day from home
  • I need to do a lot of low intensity exercise, which also allows me to make phone calls and listen to technical briefings/conferences etc

and just as briefly the bad:

  • I need to work mainly from home
  • I only work between 4 and 6 hours a day
  • I am most suited to longer term work, because of the day to day variability of the conditions
  • I am better working in a supporting rather than leadership role

I have three main options that I am considering with my company:

  • Working within a Product Management team, which is primarily concerned with managing the products and services we provide to customers through their lifecycle.  This means making sure that we correctly …

Service-oriented Architecture: A Field Guide to Integrating XML and Web Services

Not a particularly challenging book on this subject.  It starts with the basics and never really gets to the guts of developing SOA applications.  However it does a good job of explaining the basics of the standards and key concepts, although it does over use very simple diagrams.  I know a picture tells a thousand words, but in this case some of the pictures could be explained in 10 words without too much difficulty. 

That said I found it very useful and particularly liked the concept maps, that showed how all of the various standards/services related to each other.

If you want a more ambitious book then Enterprise Service Bus by David Chappel, looks promising: