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A final point is 'smoke test'/'concierge model' experiments, whereby you only design and develop the first step in a process, and from there on the handle it manually. I.e. in the fruit subscription example one could create an order form in wufoo.com (and accept only payment by invoice). The question often is if this test is really needed. I.e. you could also call 10 customers to check if they would order, and the design of the page will later be tested with a user test. In many situations such many situations, such a test could also require quite some 'back-office'/concierge staff that you actually don't have. 

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This is more of 'company preference' nature. The Product Council could give more gradual, step by step approval of a Roadmap theme. As a first agenda point, the council might select a few themes they want more data to be collected on. As a second point they might approve the start of design of of a design of one or two Roadmap theme's (based on the collected data). And a third agenda point they might approve the start of development of a Roadmap theme (based on the Design and User testing that has been done on the design). This more gradual approach prevents theme's from proceeding when the user test results clearly say users don't like the solution. It also helps to prioritize the data gathering (learning/validation/experimentation) efforts by PM, as the Product Council will ask for the most important data they need for their decision making. It could, however, be argued that a good Head of Product / CPO / PM could does not really need the direction from the council for this. An example from "How to create Products that customers will love":

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The decision the Product Council has to make is the order of roadmap theme's or at least what Roadmap theme goes next. The hard way of doing this is asking everybody for their opinion and arguments, who will mostly be subjective. This will lead to endless discussions that are not grounded in data on what the customer wants and therefore lead to bad compromises. The easier way of doing is that A) the PM convinces the group of the importance of data-driven decision making. B)  The PM convinces the group based on what data points themes are prioritized C) The PM collects that data D) The PM presents a top 3-5 of next roadmap theme's supported by he collected by the collected E) The Product Council orders the list. 

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