Three Key Factors to Feature Prioritization

Three Key Factors to Feature Prioritization

Three Key Factors to Feature Prioritization

Product managers usually work on various aspects of a product at any given time. In any large organization, multiple stakeholders typically make decisions about the product. The biggest challenge is prioritizing various requests and ensuring you meet deadlines. The best way to approach this problem is by building tiny habits that guarantee good results over time. It is important to remember that your product will not change overnight. It is a marathon and not a sprint. In my experience as a product owner, I use the following three essential habits to prioritize multiple requests to improve my product. 

Factor 1: A formula to prioritize product updates/bugs

Yes, you can break down aspects of product management logically. Building this formula will save you time and even plan your sprints faster. You can efficiently tackle low-hanging fruits and complete larger tasks smoothly. One of my managers helped me build this formula. There are three main questions I ask every time there is a request to enhance a product I am working on

1: Does it affect customer acquisition?

If your product helps your customers, your primary focus should be reaching more people. If the request/bug affects your customer acquisition, it should be a high-priority task. Customer acquisition also means more money coming in through your product. 

2: Does it affect current customers?

Your current customers keep you afloat, so it is imperative to keep them happy. They help you grow your user base by spreading the word. Unhappy customers, to some extent, affect your customer acquisition. If the request/bug affects your current customers, it is a high-priority task. 

3: Does it affect the customer’s happy path?

A customer’s 'happy path' is when a user can sign up for your product, make any necessary payments, and start using your product without issues. It's the ideal user journey without any obstacles. If the request/bug affects any of these three steps, it is a high-priority task. 

There is no single formula for all products. Still, the above three questions should help you identify your product's high-priority tasks. 

Factor 2: Open Communication with your team and stakeholders

In product management, “no news” and “more news” are two sides of the same coin. If you don’t hear anything about your product from your stakeholders, it is good and means things are working as expected. However, gathering more information not only helps your team work more efficiently on new enhancements, but also fosters a sense of connection and collaboration. Always engage with your stakeholders; let them know if there are things you need to pause because of other conflicting tasks. Regularly outline your team’s priorities with them; this helps them understand how to work with you to achieve their goals. Set up meetings to prioritize, select and deselect upcoming tasks. When there are conflicting priorities for your tasks, request the stakeholders to work among themselves. Remember to give suggestions and help them understand how their priority can affect your product. 

Factor 3: Keep a list of low-hanging fruits/wins during downtime.

Every team has some downtime, whether waiting for a feature launch or right after a busy sprint. An excellent way to make the most of this downtime and keep your team engaged is to have a backlog of low-hanging fruits. These tasks, though of low priority, can be quickly completed and contribute to the overall improvement of your product. By keeping a list of small tasks, you're not just constantly working on improving your product, but also fostering a sense of proactivity and productivity. A good habit for a product manager is setting some time aside in a month to review the product end-to-end. Doing this helps you pick up any regression bugs or even generate ideas for improving the product. 


As a product manager, develop a small formula tailored to your product. This formula should help you easily prioritize tasks. Regularly engage your stakeholders and work alongside them to prioritize tasks. In case of conflicting priorities, request the stakeholders to work amongst themselves; it can save you time and allow you to focus more on your product. Constantly give suggestions to your stakeholders based on data. Lastly, keep a list of low-priority tasks to keep your team engaged, and build a habit of going through your product’s end-to-end flow and looking for improvements. 

With these three simple steps, you can spend less time prioritizing tasks and more time working with the team to grow your product efficiently. 

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