Each spring we award the best products of the past year for their excellence in driving digital innovation. We're beyond excited to announce the Stages and Categories that will be awarded in the 2021 Virtual Product Awards.

The Product Awards is our absolute favorite product management event of the year. If you joined us last year, you know that last year’s show didn’t disappoint in excitement, and we plan on making this year’s even better. Now, although the 2021 Product Awards will be celebrated virtually, we promise to continue to create opportunities for the product community to connect together as a whole, even if we’re apart. After all, that’s what Products That Count is all about.

If you missed last year’s event, take a minute and catch up on last year’s awards here.

The 2021 Product Awards Stages

As you think about who you’d like to nominate, let’s take a moment to lay out the Award Stages and Categories. Briefly, our inspiration for the Product Awards is the product life cycle. As a product team develops and releases a product, there are clear stages that they must work through. Namely, these stages are Conceive, Design, Build, Operate, and Collaborate. As you can imagine, we find it to be the ideal guidance for framing the awards.

The 5 major stages provide a great overview, however, we all know product management isn’t that simple. There’s an art to it. Product leaders must also possess certain superpowers within each stage that aid them in achieving product success. These superpowers are our categories. Essentially, they are the competencies that make products, and the teams behind them, great. Take a scroll down below to read the full breakdown.

 

CONCEIVE

The stage of the product lifecycle in which a product team identifies and prioritizes ideas and concepts.

Generate Ideas
Foster raw creativity and drive concept breakthroughs that create systemic value.

Discover & Prioritize
Organize ideas to discover further value while prioritizing next stage actions.

Develop Concepts
Bring ideas to life and develop concepts through prototype creation and hackathons.

Engage Stakeholders
Encourage conversation and engagement with internal and external stakeholders geared toward idea generation.

 

DESIGN 

The stage of the product life cycle in which a product team translates ideas into user experience designs. 

Design Interface
Design easy to use, intuitive user interfaces that delight customers.

Drive Conversion
Design customer onboarding experiences that drive conversion through the funnel. 

Iterate & Research
Rapidly iterate, gain user and stakeholder feedback, create prototypes, and prepare for development. 

Refine & Collaborate
Use stakeholder feedback to collaborate and distill ideas in order to refine product design. 

 

BUILD

The stage of the product life cycle in which a product team renders designs into a fully-realized product.

Focus Solutions
Highlight the needs of the builder by determining solutions focused on action. 

Navigate Complexities
Navigate product complexities through ease of work flow.

Integrate
Seamlessly collaborate with other teams to integrate internal and external products.

Scale & Grow
Develop best practices that prepare to scale for future growth. 

 

OPERATE

The stage of the product life cycle in which a product team launches, operates, and supports the product.

Measure Impact
Launch and measure quantitative impact to determine product success.

Document Knowledge
Document, organize, and share knowledge across teams.

Listen & Gather
Listen and gather qualitative insights from real users to inform future iterations

Automate
Automate and streamline operation processes.

 

COLLABORATE

The stage of the product life cycle in which a product team enables effective communication across product stakeholders.

Resolve Issues
Resolve customer issues, improve user experiences, and engage with stakeholder feedback.

Coordinate
Coordinate and assign tasks across teams for better conversation and accountability. 

Communicate
Brainstorm, whiteboard, and encourage discussions with internal and external teams.

Capture & Understand
Focus on the details and capture data to better understand user journeys and pain points.

 

Nominate your favorite products by stage

Right now nominations for the awards are open to the product community, but what happens next? Let’s lay it out.

First, we’ll introduce everyone to the members of our Awards Advisory Board. This group is comprised of 5 product executives that are leaders in the product community and carry a true passion for the world of product. These product leaders will use their expertise in product management to evaluate the list of nominees and place them into their respective stages and categories. Of course, feel free to designate which stage you feel your product wins at best when you nominate.

After all the nominations are in, the Awards Advisory Board will determine the finalists. As we enter the new year, the finalists will be announced here at Products That Count, so check back here to see where your nomination lands. Finally, we call upon the product community as a whole (that’s you!) to vote on who they think should win.

In spite of all the challenges brought on by 2020, the product community continues to blaze ahead, so join us in March and let’s celebrate the products and tools that drive the world forward. See you at the 2021 Product Awards!

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