By far the most frequently-asked question in the last 72 hours has been, "what exactly is your new role?"  I realized at some point last night that my initial blog entry used a lot of high level words, but didn't describe the day-to-day.  After spending yesterday in an all-day operational review, I can start to answer that question in some specificity, and also put a stake in the ground for what some of my objectives are.  Since I have not yet met all of my team, it would be premature to talk about too many specifics, but at least I can start by telling you what we're up to.

Put simply, the function of my new team is product management.  We worry about the overall business strategy for key products:

  • Lotus Notes, Lotus iNotes (DWA), and Lotus Notes Traveler
  • Lotus Symphony
  • Project "Atlantic" (integration of Notes with SAP, coming in 2009)
We are part of a larger organization within Lotus that also manages Domino, Lotus Foundations, Lotus Protector, the Notes/Domino/Expeditor application development strategy, and the pre-announced Hosted Notes offering.

In addition to managing the above areas, my personal focus within all of this is our stance in end-user messaging and collaboration.  That meant that in the span of six short hours yesterday, my team and I were talking about everything from branding to themes to awareness to deployment.  I heard about plans for the next versions of Notes and Domino, how we're doing on references, what is going on with key partners and ISV relationships, the latest on Notes/Domino from an app dev perspective, status on IBM's internal deployment of Lotus products, and a core dump of plans and details around Symphony.  There would have been more!...not everyone was at the meeting.

Over the next several days, my calendar is basically one meeting after another of introduction, understanding, and brainstorming.  I'll be working with all of the above functional areas, but also connecting into Lotus marketing, channels, sales, and of course, development.  My stake in the ground is simple -- with such a large and diverse business, we are going to focus on activities that are scalable and make strategic impact.  This might seem obvious, but it is very easy for product and business managers to get tied down on, well, managing.

After two days on the job,I'm confident we have a world of opportunity for these products.  The team is great and has been working hard on some great ideas, projects, and initiatives.  In the coming weeks, you'll be seeing a lot more about our work.

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