|Ahhhh roadmaps… if you have heard me speak, you know that I believe your roadmap is your most important document. I have probably written that in the archives somewhere too. It should be reviewed weekly, maybe you change it maybe you do not. You should carry it with you at all times and you should know it cold. That being said, is it spelled roadmap or road map? Stupid spell check.
One of the most important aspects of your roadmap is your product vision. Your vision is one of the pillars in your strategy along with your mission statement and value network. Often people will confuse mission and vision statements. Your vision statement will focus on the future and your mission statement will focus on the present. You absolutely need to own both the vision and mission for your product. Even the agilists will tell you, the product manager, to own this.
Joel Spolsky reprinted an article by Jim Highsmith. Scary, but this article originally appeared in August 2001, almost 8 years ago. Despite that, I think it is very relevant to where we are today. The article offers a simple vision framework from Geoffrey Moore’s book Crossing the Chasm. It follows the form:
You will likely adjust your vision over-time as markets evolve but I think this gives you a great framework for developing an easy to understand and communicate vision. Developing your vision is one of those writing exercises that is a REALLY important task that will require you to put the time in to get it right. You need to define your vision and mission statements, champion them and constantly test them on various audiences.
Does anyone have another framework or an example of vision statements that they like better than Moore’s?
Image Source: dreadfullyposh.com
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