Why would you want to focus on creating a Product and Business Development Super Team?
I had drinks with a fellow NYC Product Leader this week (will see the details in a post next week about that) where we stumbled on the topic of how the mindset of a product leader is well aligned with that of business developers. This has been a topic of interest to me recently as I’ve worked closely with a number of talented BD folks in my Venture.
Teaming up with the BD folks in my Venture I’ve observed lots of overlap in terms of figuring out how to bring product value to our prospective customers. I have found that while they are more focused on how to structure the business arrangements and contracts, I can assist in parallel in how the current features and offerings can be used and what is needed to close more business.
As the product person interested in learning about the needs of our clients – having this type of partnership is a great way to quickly attain a meaningful and prioritized backlog. Because I am seeing the end user reactions and discussions about the actual “value” of features, I am able to build a roadmap tied to actual dollars. Further, this relationship allows the trust between the prospect and BD leader to develop based on hearing out their needs and building he product they hope to pay for.
What about the overlap of the roles? Product Leader Ben Shan has stated, “Basically, in any given organization, these roles can overlap in some areas or the roles could work very closely together.” That has also been my experience and is a great way to get market accepting product sooner than later.