Product management ideas

2 min read

Listen to customers (for user problems)

Don’t listen to customers (for solutions)

Watch the competition (for customer research)

Don’t watch the competition

Adopt good ideas from other people

Get paid

Stop worrying about getting paid

Say no Stop saying no

Speed up

Don’t confuse yourself with your customer

Don’t be a visionary

Be dumb


Top 10% communication skills

Bridge design, engineering, business








Goal, customer, distribution, business model, pricing,features, competition

What is the goal of the product?

Who is the customer?

What is the business model for the product?

How should we price the product?

What are the primary features and use cases?

How do we define success and what metrics can we use to track the product?

What are the competitive dynamics and how should we position the product against competitors?

How will the product differentiate?

What are some key distribution channels?

Measure the work items not people

Are you blocked -> what work is blocked?

What work has moved yesterday ?

What will move today ?

Questions to Ask Yourself

-Is it a discrete chunk of work?

-Does the person have the skills to do the work?

-Does the person have the authority to be successful?

-Does the person have the tools necessary to be successful?

-Does the person know what the result should look like?

-Does the person know when the work is due?

-Do you know how often you want this person to report on progress?

-Does this person know what progress looks like?

-Is this work too risky to delegate?

-Have you set the boundary conditions, e.g., budget, time, and other resources or constraints, for the work?

-Do you have a format for the work product that you want this person to use?

Product Press release

Amazon approach

thinking of a press release before working on a product

Here’s an example outline for the press release

  • Heading - Name the product in a way the reader (i.e. your target customers) will understand.
  • Sub-Heading - Describe who the market for the product is and what benefit they get. One sentence only underneath the title.
  • Summary - Give a summary of the product and the benefit. Assume the reader will not read anything else so make this paragraph good.
  • Problem - Describe the problem your product solves.
  • Solution - Describe how your product elegantly solves the problem.
  • Quote from You - A quote from a spokesperson in your company.
  • How to Get Started - Describe how easy it is to get started.
  • Customer Quote - Provide a quote from a hypothetical customer that describes how they experienced the benefit.
  • Closing and Call to Action - Wrap it up and give pointers where the reader should go next.

April 18, 2020