Start Up Series 101 - Building a Solid Foundation

5th, June 2023

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As a product manager, I am often asked about my job responsibilities. The answer is not always straightforward, as the role of a product manager varies depending on the company and context. However, there is one thing that is consistent across all product managers: the roadmap. Whether we manage it or contribute to it, the roadmap is essential to our work. A roadmap helps product managers plan not only outcomes but also the milestones needed to achieve them. However, managing a single roadmap with multiple product managers can quickly become messy. In this article, we will explore how to effectively manage a single roadmap with multiple product managers. But first lets discuss the roadmap and itself importance in a nutshell…


Roadmap-Timeline A roadmap has a lot of important purposes, but it is important to focus on the ones that align with the overall objectives of the company it is being designed for. While companies create roadmaps for various reasons, it is essential to always keep in mind the primary goal of a roadmap. The following are some of the objectives that a roadmap should prioritize:

  • The Company’s Vision (Outcome): The roadmap should start with the company's vision. What does the company want to achieve in the long term? Once the vision is clear, the roadmap can be used to break down the vision into smaller, more manageable objectives.
  • Outcome Broken Down (Tasks): Once the company's vision is broken down into smaller objectives, the roadmap can be used to identify the tasks that need to be completed in order to achieve each objective. The tasks should be specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound.
  • Single Line of Communication: The roadmap should be a single line of communication for the company. It should be a place where everyone can go to see what the company is working on, why they are working on it, and when they expect to be finished.
  • Progress Report: The roadmap should also be used to track progress. The company should regularly review the roadmap to see how they are doing against their goals. If they are not on track, they need to make adjustments.
  • Flexibility and Adaptability: While a roadmap provides a structured plan, it also allows for flexibility and adaptability. Startups often need to pivot or change direction based on feedback or market conditions, and a roadmap can help guide those changes.

Product managers need to make use of a prioritization framework. Frameworks for product prioritizing are a set of rules for choosing what to work on next. By considering numerous aspects such as user wants, corporate objectives, technical viability, effort, and possible impact, prioritization frameworks are intended to assist teams in making better decisions. These frameworks help product managers prioritize tasks, streamline cross-functional team procedures, and develop backlogs.


Product managers have access to a wide range of prioritizing frameworks, each with its own set of standards and procedures for determining scores or weights. It's crucial to rank features and Products according to their potential influence and level of work. Product managers can utilize a variety of prioritization frameworks to aid in making these choices. Below is a well-known example, while this might not always be the choice as other prioritization framework such as MOSCOW as shaped and help alot of startups, it definitely helps mangers:

RICE Framework


RICE is a type of scoring method for prioritizing. It is used to prioritize features based on their potential impact. It considers four attributes: "RICE stands for Reach, Impact, Confidence, and Effort."

Reach - How many users will this impact across a given time period?

Impact — How much will this impact each users as it related to our chosen goal?

Confidence — How confident am I in the reach, impact, and effort estimates?

Effort — How long will this take to implement?

The RICE framework has some advantages and also, disadvantages. Some advantages are stated below:

  • Reach is taken into account: The RICE framework also considers the amount of people who would be impacted by a feature. This aids the team in comprehending how a feature might affect the user base. Features with a high reach score may be more useful to prioritize because they will have an impact on more users.
  • RICE Framework focuses on impact: The RICE framework bases feature prioritization on potential impact, so features with a significant potential impact are given more priority. The team will be focusing on features that will have the biggest influence on the end product and the company as a whole if this is the case.
  • RICE Framework indicates confidence: the level of certainty the team has in the estimations—through a confidence score that is part of the RICE Framework. This is crucial because it aids the team in comprehending the degree of danger connected to each feature. Since they are more likely to be accurate, features with a higher confidence score are more desirable for priority.
  • Factors in effort: The RICE framework takes each feature's implementation effort into account. This aids the group in understanding the trade-off between effort and possible impact. The features that are most desirable for priority frequently have low effort scores with high effect scores.


When developing a roadmap with several product managers (PMs), difficulties may occur because of conflicting agendas, a lack of resources, a breakdown in communication, a lack of accountability, and complexity. To make sure that everyone is contributing effectively and efficiently to the company's aims and objectives, it is crucial to solve these difficulties.

Challenges you might encounter include:

  • Differing Priorities: It might be difficult to decide which features or activities should be included in the roadmap when there are several product managers participating, depending on their product vision, market feedback, or user research. It can be challenging to strike a balance between everyone's priorities and guarantee that the most crucial tasks are completed first.
  • Resource Distribution: With numerous product managers, there may be conflicting demands for scarce resources like the budget, design resources, and development resources. Allocating these resources in a fair manner that meets everyone's interests can be difficult.
  • Communication problems: There is a greater chance of misunderstandings or communication problems when there are numerous PMs involved. Keeping everyone up to date on changes and additions to the roadmap and making sure they are all aware of their responsibilities can be difficult.
  • Accountability: It might be difficult to hold each product manager responsible for their unique contributions to the roadmap when there are several product managers participating. As the amount of work increases in complexity, it can be challenging to make sure that everyone is meeting their deadlines and producing high-quality work.
  • Managing a roadmap with multiple product managers can be challenging as we’ve seen above. Some other challenges include divergent priorities, poor communication, and a lack of alignment. In the following sections, we will discuss ways to mitigate these challenges, such as clarifying roles and responsibilities, encouraging open communication, and establishing and agreeing on shared objectives and priorities.


Designing an effective roadmap that drives the success of a product or Product requires the establishment of specific goals and objectives. To ensure that everyone is working towards a single objective, the team needs clear goals and objectives to provide them with direction and focus.

It's crucial to first determine the primary results that the plan should achieve in order to set clear goals and objectives. This can entail raising sales, enhancing client pleasure, or introducing a fresh service or feature. Goals that are precise and measurable can be made once the outcomes have been determined. The objective can be to grow sales by a given percentage within a certain period of time, for instance, if the outcome is to raise income.


For efficient teamwork and Product management, each product manager (PM) must be given specific duties and ownership. It guarantees that each PM is aware of their own areas of concentration and accountability by clearly delineating roles and duties. This promotes effective decision-making, prevents effort duplication, and increases a team's sense of responsibility and accountability.

According to each PM's skills, strengths, and interests, certain tasks, initiatives, or product areas are assigned to them as duties. This guarantees that each PM has a distinct scope of work and can give their full attention to the responsibilities they have been given.


In order to promote productive teamwork and guarantee that everyone in the team is aware of what others are doing, a communication plan must be created. A communication plan specifies the routes and frequency of communication, as well as how information will be communicated and who has to be involved.

The communication plan should include:

  • Communication Channels: The communication plan should identify the different channels that will be used to communicate with stakeholders. This could include email, phone calls, meetings, social media, or a combination of these.
  • Meeting Schedule: The communication plan should also include a schedule of meetings that will be held with stakeholders. This will help to ensure that everyone is on the same page and that there is no confusion about what is happening.
  • Reporting Mechanisms: The communication plan should also include a system for reporting on progress. This could involve creating status reports, sending out regular updates, or holding periodic meetings to discuss progress.
  • Documentation and Sharing Platforms: The communication plan should also identify the documentation and sharing platforms that will be used to store and share information. This could include a Product management tool, a document repository, or a social media platform.
  • Stakeholder Communication: The communication plan should also include a strategy for communicating with stakeholders. This could involve identifying key stakeholders, understanding their needs, and developing a communication plan that meets those needs.


Maintaining the roadmap and achieving successful Product execution depend on the use of Product management tools. These applications offer a centralized setting for organizing, scheduling, and keeping track of Product-related tasks and activities.

The use of Product management software for roadmap management has the following major advantages:

  • Task Management: Product management software can help you to track and manage tasks, ensuring that they are completed on time and within budget. This can be done by creating tasks, assigning them to team members, and setting deadlines.
  • Collaboration and Communication: Product management software can help you to collaborate with team members and communicate with stakeholders. This can be done by creating discussions, sharing files, and sending messages.
  • Timeline and Gantt Charts: Product management software can help you to visualize your roadmap and track your progress. This can be done by creating timelines and Gantt charts.
  • Resource Management: Product management software can help you to manage your resources, ensuring that you have the right people, tools, and materials to complete your Products. This can be done by creating resource lists and tracking resource usage.
  • Progress Tracking and Reporting: Product management software can help you to track your progress and report on your results. This can be done by creating reports that show your team's progress, budget, and resource usage.


For creativity, productivity, and successful outcomes, it is essential to promote collaboration between product managers (PMs) and their teams. Here are some essential tactics for encouraging cooperation:

  • Create a Collaborative Culture: Promote a collaborative culture inside the company by highlighting the value of teamwork, honest communication, and information sharing. Encourage team members and Product managers to actively collaborate, share ideas, and solicit feedback.
  • Encourage PMs to work closely with stakeholders from many functional fields, including as engineering, design, marketing, and customer service. Encourage collaboration across teams by facilitating cross-functional meetings, workshops, or brainstorming sessions.
  • Alignment and Clarity of Objectives: Ensure that PMs and their teams are aware of the overarching objectives. Create a common vision and match team and individual objectives to the overall organizational plan. This encourages collaboration for shared goals and generates a sense of purpose.
  • Effective communication methods: To encourage collaboration, offer PMs and their teams efficient communication methods. This can include team meetings on a regular basis, instant messaging services, Product management tools, and online collaboration areas. To guarantee that everyone is informed and participates in decision-making processes, promote open and transparent communication.
  • Promote Knowledge Sharing: Give PMs and teams chances to exchange information about best practices and lessons learned. Internal presentations, workshops, or knowledge-sharing sessions can be used to accomplish this. PMs should be encouraged to promote information sharing both within and outside of their teams.
  • Foster a sense of teamwork and success by recognizing and applauding one another's efforts. Recognize the efforts of both individuals and groups in achieving common objectives. Encourage a friendly, trusting, and collaborative work climate that promotes teamwork.


Any Product or organization must establish a feedback loop for continual improvement in order to develop and succeed. It entails setting up a structured procedure for gathering input, processing it, and acting to implement iterative improvements. Here are the essential stages to creating a successful feedback loop:

Determine the channels through which input will be gathered by defining them. Surveys, suggestion boxes, private conversations, online feedback forms, and regular team meetings can all be used for this. Feedback is important, so actively seek it out from team members, clients, users, and other relevant parties. To ensure diversity, promote open and honest dialogue and offer a variety of channels for feedback.

Review and Analyze input: Carefully go over and evaluate the input you've gotten. Look for recurring difficulties, common themes, and patterns. Prioritize areas for improvement, develop actionable plans, implement changes, monitor and evaluate and close the loop.


Tracking progress, attaining important objectives, and celebrating milestones along the way are important aspects of any Product or journey. To keep motivation and momentum going, it entails setting measurable goals, periodically evaluating performance, and setting aside time to recognize and celebrate big accomplishments.

In conclusion, managing a roadmap with multiple product managers in a startup can be challenging. However, by following the strategies discussed above, startup companies can overcome challenges and work towards achieving their long-term vision.

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Olushola M.

A successful product manager with experience in fintech, social selling and also creating amazing products that meet user needs and drive acquisition and retention strategies