How to Make the Process of Prioritizing a Backlog Advantageous?

Can the process of prioritizing a product backlog be easy and agreeable? I guess every product manager dreams about it.

How to optimize prioritization and be able to persuade stakeholders of the validity of a pre-prioritised backlog? After all, how to drive consensus?

Derek Morrison from shared his own strategy on how to use a special process to not only prioritize the product backlog but to aid in building unity among stakeholders and win their confidence and trust. The following points represent his process:

  • We agreed on the goal for the next quarter (to build our user base as opposed to driving revenue.)
  • We went through the backlog and as a group agreed on the category of every item: user engagement, revenue, audience, acquisition, and so on.
  • By common consent, a champion was assigned to represent each backlog item (there were Heads of marketing, Head of Product, Ad Operations, techs, Team Lead and the MD/General Manager of the business unit).
  • The champion would then give an elevator pitch on the importance of their backlog item followed by a brief Q&A cum discussion.
  • We would then vote on how the item would best fulfill the goal we all agreed on. Each score is then entered into the spreadsheet.
  • When we get to the end of the backlog click ‘sort’ and hey presto we have a prioritized backlog.

What happened? Everyone participated, there was total transparency and all meeting members bought into the goal for the coming quarter.

The author summarized that the quality of the prioritization is directly related to the product manager’s ability to keep everyone on track and focus on the agreed goal.

How can Kanban Benefit Your Planning in 2019?

It’s not a secret that Kanban perfectly creates an accurate and easy to understand picture of your work. It helps to understand which tasks are on track, which are stuck and where bottlenecks are occurring.

What is Prioritization About?

Prioritization is a very common challenge faced by product managers of all experience levels. Some people take a very light approach, making decisions based on their own experience and data about the direction of the…