Friday, March 19, 2010

April 6 Meet: Barbara Nelson, Pragmatic Marketing

Barbara Nelson's talk is entitled "The Role of Product Management When Development Goes Agile." With more than 20 years of experience in the software industry, Barbara Nelson is an evangelist for market-driven products and has been an instructor for Pragmatic Marketing since 2000.

Prior to joining Pragmatic Marketing, Barbara served in product management and marketing positions for an enterprise accounting and finance software company, launching several products following the Pragmatic Marketing Framework. As vice president of product marketing, she worked closely with product managers, marketers and developers, showing the value of using market facts over opinions. She attributes her success to actively listening to the market, building products people want to buy.

Pragmatic Marketing's "Framework" is claimed to be the worldwide standard for successful product management. It defines the roles and responsibilities for 60,000 product management and marketing professionals at 5,000 companies in 23 countries.

If you are unfamiliar with the training and certification Pragmatic Marketing offers, this is an excellent opportunity to gain information.

The meeting is Tuesday, April 6, 2010, 6:00 PM

Kelley Blue Book
Aston Martin Conference Room
217 Technology
Irvine, CA 92618

Food will again be provided starting at 5:30 courtesy of Technisource.

The meeting will be posted as a LinkedIn event. Please RSVP there so we have a headcount for meeting preparation.

You can download this single sheet flyer. Print and hand out to invite others or post locally.

You can connect with Barbara:


Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Product Camp SoCal 2/28, My Notes

LFP*: Just my personal takeaways, no institutional ownership implied or intended.

On resume: It's not really about you. Lead with benefits for prospective employer. Research / Interviewing: ask "why is this requirement critical NOW?" The first answers you hear may not be the root cause of the opportunity. Present yourself as the solution to the root cause.

On sticking your foot in the door: To find a company email format, ie "", search * To find a title at a company, search "title" + companyname.

On creating your personal value proposition: are you a Vitamin or Painkiller? People buy vitamins with discretionary funds and buy painkillers in good times and bad. Catchy. "Better" is nice, "Significantly better" is differentiating. How do you do that vitamin to painkiller transform again?

On wireframes: Visio is fast and painless compared to other graphics-ware. Avoid re-invention: Search web for custom Visio stencils which may apply to your situation. (Personally, Visio has been my first graphics choice since the mid 90's. Still using 5.0. Suppose I should upgrade to the MS version?

On your career as a product: Everyone should roadmap their career. Nice thought. However, do you know anyone who's career followed a roadmap? My take: opportunity presents out of nowhere and not all that often. Recognize opportunity and be more ready to jump than not. Sometimes things will go badly. Pick yourself up. . . .

On voting with stickydots: I suspect this makes attendees "pile on" to ensure first tier offerings go early and they can get home. No objective research behind this conclusion whatever. On the "meetup:" well worth my time. Advise you plan to attend next time. "Un-conference:" right. This reveals organization by marketing types (am one so I can recognize)

On anthropology and marketing: a complete mind-blower. The title may not have been voter friendly. By all means keep offering this session until I get some ideas I can apply without professional assistance.

On Pragmatic Marketing and Agile: Be certain your proposed software addresses problems the customer is looking to solve. What you (your CEO, whatever) think is (final-successwise) beside the point. Poorly thought-through user stories will crash on an Agile team. Agile teams move fast; they will run you out of ideas if you haven't done your homework and do not have real customers from which to solicit further detail. "Thought Leadership" is the best two-word complex process description I've seen in a long time. Pragmatic owns product marketing and sells it one seminar at a time. Best business model ISIALT.

On social media: Sprinkles. Quantcast. Filterbox. Radian6. Actually, she said Radian7, but the fact check department couldn't find it. Wow, Virginia, you can quantify the impact of social media.

happy to be here, thanks

David Sheriff

*legal fine print

Monday, March 1, 2010

Update on Thursday's Meeting

There will be food provided at 5:30, thanks to Technisource, who is sponsoring sandwiches and drinks for our group. Technisource provides job seekers with multiple employment options, while delivering a wide range of IT staffing and technology solutions to help clients maximize their technology investments.

Correction on the parking - please note that there are some spaces that are “Reserved” and that reserved spaces are enforced 24x7 (as opposed to the reserved parking section which is only in force until 5:00 pm). Also, the entrance is off South Coast Drive, not off Fairview Road, as mentioned.