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Chapter 8: People

What to Expect

ExPD success requires the adoption of a new mindset for product developers, and the role of people should not be underestimated. In any
organization, people shape an enterprise, comprise management, structure teams, and form a culture (Figure 8.1). Each of these roles will be explored further in this chapter.

We begin this chapter with an overview of how enterprises have evolved to the current state of increased complexity and how speed and adaptability have become critical for survival in today’s environment. We will also review whether it is possible for an enterprise to be
entrepreneurial, along with the pros and cons of internal incubators and the importance of fostering a learning organization.

This chapter also addresses the critical role of management in effective decision-making and intentional change. We will review management methods that support ExPD, including decentralized decision-making and management by exception. We will also draw from important military techniques, including mission-type orders and the entrepreneurial approach of leading by asking questions.

In the team section, we discuss the importance of cross-functional partners and building trust. We conclude this section by considering the appropriate team members that comprise an ExPD team.

Finally, we look at culture, which is often invisible yet affects all interactions and represents one of the most significant challenges. We discuss it last because culture tends to exist at the intersection of management, teams, and processes. We will address issues related to culture: risk-taking, mistakes, and the stigma of failure.

In each area, we will review practices and methodologies that enable adaptability for ExPD (Figure 8.2).

Sample Content:

Download PDF Learning from Failure

image sample content from learn and adapt chapter 8 people
image sample content from learn and adapt chapter 8 people

Related Resources:

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Other Resources:

Daniel H. Kim, The Link between Individual and Organizational Learning,” Sloan Management Review (Fall 1993): 43 (Requires Subscription)

General Stanley McChrystal with Tantum Collins, David Silverman, and Chris Fussell, Team of Teams: New Rules of Engagement for a Complex World (New York: Penguin, 2015).

Robert Kelley and Janet Caplan, “How Bell Labs Creates Star Performers,” Harvard Business Review, October 7, 2014. (Subscription Required)

Glossary of product development terms


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