Focusing on product advancement instead of the development team performance

Even though cycle time is a good metric about team’s peformance, as I described in my previous post, all stories and features that a team is delivering should be validated by the Product Owner (or Product Owner team) once they are in production. This validation should check if the stories and features just delivered made the product advance in the way it was expected.

But what is this product advancement thing? Well, it depends on your product’s context. Better yet: it depends on your key performance indicators (a.k.a. KPIs). A product is advancing if it is improving its KPIs. As an example, if your KPIs are pageviews and number of subscribers, then your product advanced only if the delivered stories and features increased your pageviews and number of subscribers. This post describes a very good way to define your KPIs. This book is also a very good reading about how to define your product’s advancement metrics.

My point is that many companies are more concerned with their teams’ capacity: how many story points a team can deliver or how long is a team’s cycle time. But they should be more concerned with their products’ advancement! A team’s capacity is only a mean for achieving something greater: product advancement. And product advancement is achieved only if the right stories and features are being prioritized.

What do you think? Makes sense?


5 Responses to “Focusing on product advancement instead of the development team performance”

  1. Beau Says:

    Your point is valueble for me. Thanks!

    My blog:
    DSL Vergleich

  2. Innovation Says:

    Product Development…

    Focusing on product advancement instead of the development team performance « Tiago Motta Jorge's Professional Blog…

    • tiagomjorge Says:


      I really meant “product advancement”, in the sense that we should focus on improving our product so that we can reach our goals, using our KPIs as a guide. We should always advance and not just develop a product, because if we just develop, we can start walking on circles. 😉


  3. Gabriel Kepner Says:

    Thank you for a great post.

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