Prioritization in a huge part of a product team’s job. When it comes to developing a new product or improving a current one, the options can seem nearly unlimited. The choice to scratch one idea and move forward on another can have a big impact on product success so this responsibility is not only overwhelming but high stakes as well. Priority Matrix helps product managers and their teams work together to weigh their options and make make the right prioritization decisions.
Value Synthesis in Product Management
Priority Matrix is built around the concept of a 2×2 matrix. Not only will this two by two matrix help you prioritize down the road. The format is also optimal for a critical first step, synthesizing a products value proposition. When the value proposition is being synthesized a lot of friction and confusion can occur. Many different stakeholders will have many different ideas about what features and value the product should give. However, if the product does everything it will be an unweildy and innefective product. The Value synthesis matrix is a place where stakeholders can wrie down needs and document supporting evidence. From these many needs, product managers will be able to determine the direction for the product.
Weighing Value Alignment over Effort
Once the product value propositions has been determined it features in all of the ensuing decisions that a product management team makes. The Value Alignment//Effort framework helps product managers take lots of ideas anbd categorize them based on how well they align with the value proposition.
Quadrant One, High Value Alignment, Low Effort: Options that strongly advance the products value proposition and will not take very much effort. These are easy wins that the product team should definitely take advantage of.
Quadrant Two, High Value Alignment, High Effort: While these options would also greatly advance the product to fulfill its value proposition, they involve much effort. They may still be worthwhile options. However, more carefully planning must be taken.
Quadrant Three, Low Value Alignment, Low Effort: These options are tempting as they are quick things that can be done and will likely make the team feel productive. However the are not compatible with the value proposition and should be avoided.
Quadrant Four, Low Value Alignment, High Effort: These options should defenitely not be chosen. Not only will they involve a lot of work, they will not do much for the value proposition.
Prioritizing Business Functions
Because product management involves collaborative effort across diverse teams, there can be disagreement regarding resources and priority of these different stakeholders. The Integrated Product Team Template helps product leaders make and share choices around what teams will be prioritized when it comes to resources. Depending on the product, success will take more or less effort from each function. By listing out the effort needed from each team, based on the value proposition, product managers can diffuse any tension from competing demands on resources from different disciplines.