Your Team is Your Product

I read with interest the path that Peter took in learning about a SAAS business vs. his consulting business. Having experience in both types of businesses there wasn’t too much that was unexpected for me here, but reading a well thought out exploration of a situation is often results in clarifying ideas for me.

In this case, it reminded me of a realization I made a few years ago.

When you run a services business,
your team is your product.

What are things you need to do to your product?

  • Create new features – Adding new capabilities is important. Frequently this is hiring or training, could also be implementing new tools or processes.
  • User testing – Features that seem like a great idea in theory sometimes bomb in practice and need to be reconsidered.
  • Fix bugs – Correct bad behaviors or practices. Be sure to do this before other features end up working around/relying on certain bugs.
  • Identify edge-cases – Things that probably should be addressed someday but don’t cause problems most of the time. Be careful that these don’t become bugs.
  • Re-architecting – From time to time it makes sense to reorganize the team, including firing unfixable bugs.
  • Scaling – Always hard. Identify bottlenecks and work to resolve them. Prioritize this work to make sure you have the necessary capacity.
  • Load-balancing – Scheduling and planning to make sure people are challenged but not overwhelmed.
  • Release new versions – Make it clear when significant changes happen and celebrate when you reach new milestones.

You are never done building your product. It grows, matures, and evolves. As your product changes, make sure that you are constantly re-evaluating and critically considering how well it is functioning to do the work you need it to.

This post is part of the thread: Crowd Favorite – an ongoing story on this site. View the thread timeline for more context on this post.