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I understand that these problems can emerge in a variety of situations:

  • There is a specific goal set by management, then the current situation has to be evaluated and decide what needs to be changed or improved to achieve that goal
  • Vision has to be achieved
  • Certain KPIs need to be improved
  • Specific team operational problems
  • Achieve or improve market-fit
  • ...

But besides obvious things, how do you evaluate if something is really a problem? What if something is decided to be changed but then it turns out that that change causes wrong consequences in other areas of the product domain?

What are the tools that the PM has in order to understand the product ecosystem for these purposes? When it comes to comprehending the current situation, how does he/she decide what are the next goals?

For example, in a situation where the product is doing really well:

  • Has product-market-fit
  • Sales, Management, Customers ... everybody is happy

What would the goals of a PM manager be apart from at least maintaining this success? How does he/she decide what would be the next step for the product? Is there always a next step?

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  • Change management procedures. Changes should be evaluated by relevant stakeholders. For "understanding the product ecosystem", that sounds like a product management question, which is not part of project management; that said much of the processes in the initiation phase of project management might be helpful.. – MCW Feb 5 at 18:40
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In a globally competitive marketplace there is no place for complacency

With technology providing a global reach from any corner of the globe, you don't know where your next competitor is going to emerge.

Is there always a next step?

Yes, there is. Are you growing? Even if the answer is yes, you could be growing faster. Are you gaining market share? Even if the answer is yes, you could aim for a larger piece of the pie. Can you expand your product's addressable market?

How does your product quality compare with the rest of the industry? How does your product cost compare with the rest of the industry? How does your customer satisfaction compare with the rest of the industry? If you are making your customers happy, can you delight them? Your problem should be prioritizing from a host of such ideas, not "I am happy to be cruising along".

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In my first superficial reading of this, I'd identify several of these issues as being executive concerns. They're the ones on the bridge, they're the ones that the customer's executives are going to call.

So – in my humble – "product managers" are the folks that these executives are naturally going to turn to, to "actually execute" their high-level concerns. "Vision? KPIs?" You actually might not be in the best position to know. So, I'd be hesitant to "speak for any of them." Since all of you are actually striving to achieve the same objectives, I think that what I'd do next is to simply ... ask them. Yes, definitely, be actively involved – tell them what you think and why. Your perspective, also, is important ... and it might well be one that "they don't have."

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