Saksham Jain

12:30 PM, 14th Apr 2018

How do I prioritize the features as a product manager?

Prioritization means doing the things that are most important first.

With my experience, prioritization is one of the most complex skill to adapt. And deciding on what to do and when is a critical part of the role of product management.

At TapChief, we have a notion of a product team where engineers and marketers closely work together & understand each other functioning. With this experience of collaborating with dynamic teams & launching multiple features, I am able to set some ground rules for myself & my team which helps us make better prioritization decisions.

Set clear End Goals

Goals works with strategy to help everyone understand the big picture. So before I start technically building a product, I set end goals which most of the time would be:

  • Improve financial metrics like Revenue and Burn cost.
  • Increase platform engagement (DAU, MAU) or user experience.

Understand Cost vs Opportunity

You have got ton of features & bug fixes to roll out. But being a PM you knows that the most difficult part of your job is determining which things deserve the team’s time, money, and energy.

I tend to make my decisions easy using a Cost vs Opportunity quadrant. Depending on my situation I choose my quadrant but ensure that I stick to it and don’t mess things by hopping b/w quadrants.

Another model that some highly effective PMs refer as a simple tool for prioritization is RICE Model: Reach, Impact, Confidence & Effort. I found this article really helpful to understand this:

RICE: Simple prioritization for product managers - Inside Intercom

Get Organized & prevent time wasting

Before anyone can prioritize, they must first organize. I consider its very important for any PM to keep this attitude as it really helps you to shut the confusion and remove cluttering which is a major time waster.

For this I get a big help with Project Management Tools like G Suite, JIRA, Asana or Trello. They are great to identify parts of a project and determine timelines from start to finish, allowing better planning on all parts.

Dealing with Conflicting Priorities

We face multiple demands on our time every day. In these situations, how should priorities be determined? Each project seems to be important, and wants attention, but a few strategic questions can provide a more accurate priority and timeframe.

Q. Is this product or feature bring closer to our goals?

Q. How many customers/users does this product affect?

Q. Take different opinions from diverse teams & reliable external resources?


To sums up I loved what Brandon Chu has to say in his article Ruthless Prioritization - The BlackBox of Product Management:

All high functioning teams must prioritize. Not once a month, not once a week  but rigorously, and ruthlessly.

Want to know more about the experience of product building? Click Here for direct conversation.

Push pixels...
Shovel coal into server...
Create mockups...
Defend the wall...
Draft storyboard...
Disrupt an industry...
Achieve profitability...
Become a unicorn...
Become Batman...