The competitive advantage of BPMA sponsored groups

An Agile Product Open meetup recap

By Lisa Sieverts – The BPMA sponsors many different groups that provide practical educational and workshop type events. These events empower our membership with the knowledge and skills necessary to improve their current work or further advance their careers in product management. Product management is one of those disciplines that simply requires continuous education to stay sharp.

The Agile Product Open meetup is one such group that is dedicated to advancing the principles and practices of product management. It’s a collaborative forum for leveraging Agile to discover and deliver better products, sooner.

On Thursday, April 27th, 35 intrepid Agile Product Open evangelists met at the iZotope offices in Cambridge, MA.

Meeting picture

After a warm welcome by Dan Sokoloff and Ellen Gottesdiener, announcements regarding jobs and jobs seekers and delicious pizza from Cappy’s, attendees went to work.

The theme for the evening was “Agile Product Roadmaps”. Using a modified Open Space, attendees set the agenda with topics they had passion and energy around. Topics were proposed by a “convener” and the agenda filled up with a total of nine topics (four or five concurrently), for two 35 minute rounds of deep conversation.

Each attendee participated in topics that they were interested in, operating using the “Law of Mobility” (go elsewhere if you aren’t getting value or contributing value to the conversation).

Topics included:

  • My First Roadmap
  • Differences Between Product Managers and Product Owners
  • Roadmaps vs, Committed Features
  • Roadmaps ‘smells’
  • What’s the Right Level for Roadmap “Chunks”
  • Kill the Roadmap
  • Roadmaps for external v internal projects
  • Getting ‘why’ Into Your Roadmap
  • Putting UX in the Roadmap.

Groups engaged in open discussions about the topic, taking note of interesting thoughts and engaging one another for different perspectives.

At the end of the discussions the entire group reconvened and reviewed the notes from each discussion group. This meetup lays the groundwork for future APO events, which will be capped by an all-day Open Space later this year.

Sponsors for this event included the Agile Alliance and iZotope.

The Agile Product Open website will tell you more about past and upcoming events. Join the APO Meetup to get notifications about upcoming meetups. You can view a full set of photos from the Agile Product Roadmapping here.

Next Meetup: Wednesday, June 28th at Slalom 181 Newbury St., Floor 6, Boston, MA 02116, registration is open at Eventbrite.

Save the date for the All-Day Fall APO Conference: Saturday September 16th at Suffolk University, 120 Tremont Street, Boston, MA

Thanks to everyone who participated!

Lisa Sieverts picture

With 20 years of experience, Lisa Sieverts specializes in sharing the tools and techniques of Agile project management. She owns Facilitated Change, an independent consulting firm in Harrisville, NH. She also teaches at the graduate level for the Harvard Extension School.


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