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Last week on Aug 14, I had the honor of being a part of the jury panel for evaluating budding product ideas from working professionals who are aspiring Product evangelists enrolled as students with the Institute of Product leadership (IPL). I would like to share a snippet of my experience being on this panel.

We were present in the wonderful campus of CMRIT, while most of the students joined online. As we started, we were briefed that all students were in their first semester of Product Management Program. The product pitch was to be made by top 4 teams of the batch. The event was termed as "Skillathon" which was meant to access  and evaluate the product management understanding based on the showcased product and to propagate the ideology of "learning by doing".  And for this evaluation, the jury panel was made of highly-experienced Industry Stalwarts in the realm of Product Management and with varied exposure to startups within and outside of India.

What transpired in the next 2 hours was something remarkable and awe-inspiring. The showcased concepts were not just nascent deliberations of product ideas, but well thought and evangelized products that were solutions to strong pain points. All of the products showcased were with adequate data-driven metrics, backed with comprehensive market & competitor analysis and rock-solid business models to support their solution ideas and minimum viable products. There were demos associated with each idea which even showcased the thought process and the initial versions of the products themselves. There was a lot of attention to detail in each presentation which articulated the problem effectively solved by the product. Some products were also already in a prototype mode to gather user feedback and to use the feedback to enhance the product. Each of showcased product was unique and could have excellent value proposition when put into the market.

There was some excellent feedback by the jury on the products that were showcased along with some good pointers for improving the products and for their better positioning in the market. The entire experience of working with the jury and also the product showcase itself brought with it lots of learning and takeaways. The feedback provided by jury was very well received and highly appreciated as it added value not only to the program being pursued but also to the next probable steps in their product journey. Interacting with various product evangelists was a very enriching and fulfilling experience. Lastly, it was great to see the product-mindset being nurtured by IPL. I would like to thank them for the opportunity presented to me and wish the evangelists the very best on their product journey.

Details of the showcase can be checked in the link.

Views shared here are my own personal experiences and insights and I would be glad to hear your thoughts and feedback.