October 7, 2022

Hans Carlson on Product Discovery and Opportunity Solution Trees

Ben Corbett

Hans Carlson on Product Discovery and Opportunity Solution Trees

New mobile apps to keep an eye on

Auctor purus, aliquet risus tincidunt erat nulla sed quam blandit mattis id gravida elementum, amet id libero nibh urna nisi sit sed. Velit enim at purus arcu sed ac. Viverra maecenas id netus euismod phasellus et tempus rutrum tellus nisi, amet porttitor facilisis aenean faucibus eu nec pellentesque id. Volutpat, pellentesque cursus sit at ut a imperdiet duis turpis duis ultrices gravida at aenean amet mattis sed aliquam augue nisl cras suscipit.

  1. Commodo scelerisque convallis placerat venenatis et enim ullamcorper eros.
  2. Proin cursus tellus iaculis arcu quam egestas enim volutpat suspendisse
  3. Sit enim porttitor vehicula consequat urna, eleifend tincidunt vulputate turpis

What new social media mobile apps are available in 2022?

At elit elementum consectetur interdum venenatis et id vestibulum id imperdiet elit urna sed vulputate bibendum aliquam. Tristique lectus tellus amet, mauris lorem venenatis vulputate morbi condimentum felis et lobortis urna amet odio leo tincidunt semper sed bibendum metus, malesuada scelerisque laoreet risus duis.

Sit enim porttitor vehicula consequat urna, eleifend tincidunt vulputate turpis

Use new social media apps as marketing funnels

Ullamcorper pellentesque a ultrices maecenas fermentum neque eget. Habitant cum esat ornare sed. Tristique semper est diam mattis elit. Viverra adipiscing vulputate nibh neque at. Adipiscing tempus id sed arcu accumsan ullamcorper dignissim pulvinar ullamcorper urna, habitasse. Lectus scelerisque euismod risus tristique nullam elementum diam libero sit sed diam rhoncus, accumsan proin amet eu nunc vel turpis eu orci sit fames.

  • Eget velit tristique magna convallis orci pellentesque amet non aenean diam
  • Duis vitae a cras morbi  volutpat et nunc at accumsan ullamcorper enim
  • Neque, amet urna lacus tempor, dolor lorem pulvinar quis lacus adipiscing
  • Cursus aliquam pharetra amet vehicula elit lectus vivamus orci morbi sollicitudin
“Sit enim porttitor vehicula consequat urna, eleifend tincidunt vulputate turpis, dignissim pulvinar ullamcorper”
Try out Twitter Spaces or Clubhouse on iPhone

Nisi in sem ipsum fermentum massa quisque cursus risus sociis sit massa suspendisse. Neque vulputate sed purus, dui sit diam praesent ullamcorper at in non dignissim iaculis velit nibh eu vitae. Bibendum euismod ipsum euismod urna vestibulum ut ligula. In faucibus egestas  dui integer tempor feugiat lorem venenatis sollicitudin quis ultrices cras feugiat iaculis eget.

Try out Twitter Spaces or Clubhouse on iPhone

Id ac imperdiet est eget justo viverra nunc faucibus tempus tempus porttitor commodo sodales sed tellus eu donec enim. Lectus eu viverra ullamcorper ultricies et lacinia nisl ut at aliquet lacus blandit dui arcu at in id amet orci egestas commodo sagittis in. Vel risus magna nibh elementum pellentesque feugiat netus sit donec tellus nunc gravida feugiat nullam dignissim rutrum lacus felis morbi nisi interdum tincidunt. Vestibulum pellentesque cursus magna pulvinar est at quis nisi nam et sed in hac quis vulputate vitae in et sit. Interdum etiam nulla lorem lorem feugiat cursus etiam massa facilisi ut.

Hans Carlson is a Product Manager at MATCHi,  an online booking and administration platform for racquet sports. Today we discussed product discovery, and how to build an opportunity solution tree based on existing product research and company objectives.

Ben: Thanks for joining us Hans! to kick things off, tell me about your current role?

Hans: I’m currently a Product Manager at MATCHi. MATCHi is an online booking and administration platform for racquet sports. We have several product teams at the company, I am responsible for the core team, which is the booking engine and main experience for our customers. I’ve been working in product management for 6 years and prior to this, I worked in a number of different consulting and BD roles.

Ben: Can you expand a bit more on your day-to-day work? What does product discovery look like for you as a PM?

Hans: At the core of product discovery, it is all about learning from customers. It is about learning about customer pain points, understanding their problems and needs and how we might deliver solutions to meet them. A big part of it understandably is about gaining alignment with the team and the wider organisation. So we all have a shared understanding of what those pain points are, so we can make better decisions.

Ben: You mentioned alignment. What does that look like in reality?

Hans: It is a tough one. Naturally, everyone wants to solve problems and we all have great ideas about what to build quickly so we can solve them. But discovery to me is a lot more about truly understanding the important problems that customers have and falling in love with a problem, not a solution. Boiling down the specific customer problem and understanding the “why” is the most important thing when it comes to aligning with stakeholders, as it makes for better conversations when we are talking about the outcomes that we are trying to achieve.

Ben: You mentioned problems, outcomes, ideas and solutions. How do these all relate to your product discovery work?

Hans: I really like the strategic part of product management. Outcomes are the best starting point when trying to better understand what customers want to achieve and how we as a company can be successful. From here, you can find opportunities or challenges that customers are trying to overcome and you can then land on a structured way of thinking about where solutions and ideas arrive from there. Those solutions relate to opportunities and outcomes.

Ben: How do you work with other others in your team? How do designers and engineers fit within discovery?

Hans: It is always hard to get this working really well without the concept of a product trio (design, product and engineering). If there is an understanding that it is structured in this way, then it means discovery work becomes part of the daily or weekly routine. This is an important step and breaks through the idea that our only roles are related to execution.

Ben: You mentioned structuring your discovery work. Can you tell me a bit more about how you do this with opportunity solution trees?

Hans: We had a lot of growth at the end of last year. We went from one product team to six, after splitting our product organisation into several different product teams. Part of this was having a CPO that was very much on board and in favour of empowered product teams. That was a great starting point for us to do something new, which is how I first came across and used an opportunity solution tree.

We had a number of solutions we were already delivering on. So we took this as a learning experience to ‘work backwards’ from here to track back to our team’s objectives. It isn’t an ideal way to do it, however, looking back it gave us a great experience to come together as a team and learn how to structure it.  Once we moved on from those objectives we were able to start a new tree and could do so with a shared understanding and experience of how to structure our discovery work together.

It was successful because we had the opportunity to learn. We weren’t starting from a blank page so it was helpful to use the work we had ahead of us to think about framing opportunities and aligning on objectives.

Ben: How do you think about learning and experimentation?

Hans: We are trying to change the mentality of purely building and delivering, by having a bit more of a focus on learning and experimentation. We try to take the time to conduct very small experiments, often with sales and customer success and try to get into the mental space of learning. Having the time to really focus on learning and experimenting while balancing delivery is a tough thing to get right.

Ben: You also mentioned empowered product teams. what does that look like in terms of product discovery activities?

Hans: To me, the idea of an empowered product team is that we are empowered in the sense that we own the problem space and solution space of our product. This doesn’t mean we have complete freedom to do whatever we want. It obviously needs to be aligned with the company’s strategy, goals and vision, but we own this area and we take responsibility to learn as much as possible to actually solve problems in that space. We went from a product team of five to thirty, so we really want to keep challenging ourselves to be proactive instead of reactive in this area.