#10 The Quarterly Product Strategy Meeting: Combining Strategies for Success

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Sep 01, 2023

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#10 The Quarterly Product Strategy Meeting: Combining Strategies for Success

In today's fast-paced business world, having a well-defined product strategy is crucial for success. Companies like Netflix and BMW have implemented effective strategies that have propelled them to the forefront of their respective industries. While their approaches may differ, there are common points that can be gleaned from their experiences.

One key aspect that both Netflix and BMW emphasize is the importance of alignment within teams. Netflix, in particular, believes in the concept of being "highly aligned and loosely coupled." This means that each team understands the overall product strategy and how their contributions fit into the company's success. At BMW, they take into consideration the diverse needs of their customers when designing their products, ensuring that they improve the lives of their customers.

Another shared principle is the idea of providing context rather than control. Netflix believes in empowering their teams to make decisions without heavy-handed processes, instead providing them with the necessary context through strategy. Similarly, BMW focuses on responsibility, appreciation, transparency, trust, and openness in their core values, allowing for a culture of responsibility and recognition of stakeholders.

To effectively communicate and reinforce their strategies, both companies utilize regular meetings. Netflix started with monthly product strategy meetings for each swimlane and eventually evolved into a Quarterly Product Strategy meeting. This meeting became a mechanism for the Netflix culture, enabling teams to stay aligned and informed. BMW, on the other hand, has a clear mission statement and vision that guides their actions and decision-making processes.

So, how can you apply these lessons to your own company? Here are three actionable pieces of advice:

  • 1. Foster alignment within your teams: Ensure that every member of your team understands the overall product strategy and how their work contributes to the company's success. Regularly communicate this strategy and provide opportunities for team members to share insights that are relevant to everyone.
  • 2. Provide context, not control: Trust your teams to make decisions by providing them with the necessary context through strategy. Avoid heavy-handed processes and rules that stifle creativity and innovation. Instead, empower your teams to take ownership of their work.
  • 3. Regularly review and refine your strategy: Just as Netflix uses Net Promoter Score surveys to improve their quarterly strategy meetings, regularly assess the effectiveness of your own strategy. Seek feedback from your team members and identify areas for improvement. Continuously refine and adapt your strategy to stay ahead of the competition.

In conclusion, a well-defined product strategy is essential for success in today's competitive business landscape. By aligning teams, providing context, and regularly reviewing and refining your strategy, you can accelerate both results and learning. Take inspiration from companies like Netflix and BMW, and adapt their approaches to suit your own organization. Remember, the key is to keep your strategy "front and center" and ensure that it guides your actions and decision-making processes.

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