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Meet the Productboard team behind the transformation: Engagement manager

Meet the Productboard team behind the transformation: Engagement manager

Productboard’s global Professional Services team talks transformation 

We’re here to answer some of your most pressing questions! As a team, the most frequently asked questions we get are “tell us what your other customers do?” or “what’s a best practice that you see?”

We’ll be sharing that and more over the next few weeks — starting with Engagement Manager Denae Foster.

Meet Denae Foster, Engagement Manager

Meet the Productboard Professional Services Team

Can you describe your role for us?

Your engagement manager at Productboard is an extension of your team that works closely managing the implementation journey. Think governance, documentation, risk management, change management and your ultimate support system throughout the transformation.

How does your role support a change program?

Speaking of change, we know that change is the only constant in life and change is hard no matter what it is or where it lands in your organization. My role as an engagement manager is to be a change advocate for your organization; or, even better, support you in uncovering who your internal change champions are. I am here to communicate the “what’s in it for me” — the future state vision — and address various stakeholders throughout the implementation journey. Change is an ongoing process and I am actively involved in understanding the appetite for change and creating a program to meet you where you are with the help of our Productboard Change Framework.

What advice would you give a customer undergoing a transformation?

Embrace change, fail forward, and communicate. The first step to any transformation is identifying what change is needed and taking the action. If you can rally a team of change champions behind the transformation, your ideal state vision can come to life.

Secondly, fail forward. When you notice something isn’t working — potentially the champions involved are becoming adverse or you need extra time configuring your prioritization methodology — acknowledge where the challenge lies, and pivot.

Lastly, communicate. Transformations don’t happen in silos and many stakeholders are going to be impacted in a positive way. The best way to stay focused and give stakeholders visibility is communication. Throughout your transformation your engagement manager will provide a strong communications plan that will inform, inspire and engage your team.

What are some of the best practices you have seen among the many customers that you’ve worked with?

One of my favorite approaches in a change program is the tactic of appointing various levels of change champions. When we work with organizations on their product transformation a best practice is to include a variety of maturity levels and a variety of sentiments. What exactly do we mean here? Here is a great example of appointing the champions for your implementation journey.

The first recommendation is to select a product team member that is embracing change and identified as a potential power user. The second recommendation is to appoint a product team member that is change adverse and lacks the appetite for change related to your product process. Diversifying your program team will allow various levels of team members to be accounted for. We often see that various levels of maturity being in one room working together generates some really positive business results for the product organization.

Favorite PB functionality?

Roadmap sharing and embedding – what isn’t there to love about being able to increase visibility amongst stakeholders with roadmaps that are dynamic? As an engagement manager we are all about collaboration and transparency across teams while catering to differing stakeholder needs. Now, roadmaps can live in an internal space such as their company wiki and stakeholders can self-serve all the information they need!

Fun Fact?

I once was an avid marathon runner! Marathoning was a hobby, but I loved it and was able to partake in some of the most iconic races, including completing the Boston Marathon twice.

Get in touch with the Professional Services Team here! 

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