Eric Picard is a product leader with more than twenty years of experience building world class products and high performing teams and companies. His experience ranges from very large public companies to late stage startups and turnarounds, as well as founding his own startups. Eric has extensive M&A experience, as well as a track record of leading through transitions.
Several offerings to help your business succeed.
This is strategy consulting through the lens of Product.
- True North Planning: True North Planning is an important exercise for any company or product as it helps to set a long-term vision and goals for the team to work towards. This process should define what the company or product should look like in 3-5 years and outline the steps needed to get there. This helps to align everyone in the organization towards a common goal and ensure that everyone is working towards the same objectives.
- Ecosystem and Competitive Analysis: Ecosystem and Competitive Analysis is crucial to understanding the competitive landscape and the overall ecosystem that the company is operating in. This analysis should provide a detailed understanding of the competition, their strengths and weaknesses, and any patterns that emerge. This helps to inform the product strategy and ensure that the company is making informed decisions.
- Market Requirements Analysis: A Market Requirements Analysis (MRA) is a process of collecting and analyzing data about the market, competitors, customers, and other external factors to identify the key market requirements that are necessary for a product or service to meet the needs of customers. Market requirements are different than product requirements, as they are collected from market analysis and customer feedback, and call out the market need, rather than specifically what an engineering team will build.
- Technical Review: Technical Review is an important aspect of product management, as it helps to ensure that the product is technically sound and that the architecture is well-designed. This review would assess the company’s development approach and overall capabilities, and identify any areas that need improvement. This helps to ensure that the company is building products that meet the needs of its customers and that they have longevity in the market.
- Talent Review: Talent Review is critical to building a strong team, particularly in maker organizations like Product and Engineering. This review should assess the quality and skill level of the product and engineering leadership teams and identify any gaps in expertise that need to be filled. This helps to ensure that the company has the right people in the right roles to build great products.
- Product Definition: Product Definition is the process of defining what the product should be at maturity. This is a critical step in the product management process as it helps to ensure that the team is building the right product. This work-back plan should define the next few versions of the product and ensure that the team is working towards the long-term vision set out in the True North Planning document.
- Product Process: Product Process is the set of processes and tools that the product team uses to build products. This should include how the team works with engineering and operations, as well as sales, product marketing, and marketing teams. This process outlines how internal partners should expect the roadmap and communications to be managed, ensuring that everyone is on the same page.
- Expectation Setting & Resetting Group Dynamics: Expectation Setting & Resetting Group Dynamics is an important aspect of managing a product team. There are often natural tension points between revenue-facing teams and the builders who create the products. This can make it difficult for these teams to communicate effectively with each other. Setting clear expectations and resetting group dynamics can help to ensure that everyone is working together towards a common goal. This can involve creating a culture of empathy and understanding between teams, as well as setting clear communication channels and expectations.
As an advisor, my role is to provide guidance and expertise to help companies achieve their goals and move to the next level. This can involve working with CEOs, product and engineering leadership, sales and marketing leadership, operations leadership and other teams to identify areas for improvement and develop strategies to address them.
My approach will depend on the specific needs of the company and the stage you are at in your development. For example, if a company is just starting out, my focus may be on helping them define their product vision and build a strong foundation for growth. If a company is more mature, my focus may be on helping them optimize their processes, improve their product offerings, and expand into new markets.
Regardless of the stage a company is at, my role as an advisor is to provide objective feedback and guidance based on my expertise and experience. This may involve conducting market research, analyzing data, and identifying areas for improvement. I may also help companies develop a roadmap for achieving their goals and provide support and guidance throughout the implementation process.
I’ve been part of fourteen acquisitions, some on the buy side, some on the sell side.
As someone with experience in both buying and selling companies, I understand the importance of working with bankers and lawyers during the transaction process. While these professionals play a critical role in ensuring the financial and legal aspects of the deal are handled appropriately, I recognize that their focus is primarily on the transaction itself and not on the post-close success of the company.
As an advisor, my focus is on helping my clients achieve their strategic goals, ensuring success post-close:
For sellers, I can help you understand the likely outcomes of the acquisition and guide you in charting a course that aligns with your personal and team goals and values. While the primary goal of selling your company is likely to be maximizing shareholder value, the reality is that you also have bled for this company, you’ve built a team with a culture, and you care a lot about how those going forward with the new entity will experience their jobs post-close. I can help you plan this and determine what is possible in structuring a deal.
For buyers, I can help ensure that the goals for the acquisition are built into the deal terms and guide you in post-close integration to maximize the potential for success. The company you’re acquiring has an existing team with a unique culture and their own vision and goals that now need to rationalized against your reasons for acquiring the company. Bankers are great at getting deals done. But once the deal is done, their job is done. I can help drive long term alignment and ensure the reason you acquired the company in the first place isn’t lost in the mix.
My approach emphasizes clarity of purpose, clear goals, and clear intent to achieve a successful outcome for my clients. By taking a holistic approach to the acquisition process, I can help my clients navigate the complexities of the transaction and emerge with a clear vision for the future of the combined company and the humans that are involved.
Paid Career Coaching & Talent Development
I’ve been highly successful at coaching more than 100 people on professional development and career growth, with nearly all of the people I’ve worked with experiencing rapid career acceleration after my guidance.
My success in this area is especially pronounced in the Product and Engineering fields, but I’ve also helped individuals in Sciences and Product Marketing, and across disciplines to shift their career path to align with their interests and long term goals.
Some of the individuals I’ve worked with have gone on to achieve huge success in their careers, while others have simply honed their interests and found the right career direction for them. My approach to professional development focuses on identifying strengths, values, and interests, and then helping individuals to develop a roadmap for growth and success based on those factors.
Through personalized guidance and coaching, I help individuals to identify areas for improvement and provide them with the tools and resources needed to achieve their goals. This is perhaps the most rewarding work I’ve done in my career.
“Eric is one of the most trustworthy people in this business. I have relied on him countless times to provide both deep technical understanding and business advice, and he has always come through. I believe wholeheartedly in his vision and his raw brainpower. He is one of those rare personalities who you always want to root for and see succeed.
Tom Hespos, Founder Underscore Marketing, CEO PitchMD