Product management feels like teaching

Within Library Technology & Digital Strategies and especially Library Technology Services in the Libraries at UF, we’ve been implementing optimized (for us!) agile, including product management since 2020. Part of doing this work is, as always, communicating new ways or working and ensuring folks understand and can use processes to be able to request support for solutions, just as well as for the team to evaluate requests and deliver solutions. We’ve implemented new processes, including a business case briefing and review, and have been talking about product management for years, and now I’ve been asked to share more on this with a local presentation. Not sure if this is useful for others, but my slides are online. These are pretty informal, being for an informal presentation to support a conversation, so covering terms and context and local examples.

In working on this, I felt like product management is a bit like teaching. I always think like a teacher, so it’s unsurprising when I equate more things to teaching. For product management (and agile, and more), the strategic orientation to outputs and outcomes reminds me of teaching, with the goal being learning, and the path for how we get there being both planned and always evolving process in any class or learning/teaching experience.