Product Management

Enough With Must-Have Features

Here’s a sentence that always fills me with dread: “We plan to adopt this new approach, just as soon as we launch these must-have features.”  The must-have feature list (AKA catch-up features) has become my nemesis—it’s forever standing in the way of progress. Usually it’s a laundry list of things copied from leading competitors, from …

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The Big Project Syndrom

There’s a common and highly destructive pattern I’m seeing time and again (and likely you have too). The leadership team falls in love with a big idea and turns it into a big project. This project becomes the top priority—apparently the future of the company depends on it. Other projects (including yesteryear’s top priorities) are …

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Think Learning, Not Experiments

I regularly meet teams that carry a heavy burden of guilt—they don’t experiment as much as they should. They aspire to build-measure-learn, but they mostly design-build-launch. They wish to run dozens of experiments per month, but barely squeeze-in one per quarter (and even that is typically a late-stage “MVP”.)  Both the teams and their managers …

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Stop Obsessing Over Development Velocity, Focus on This Instead

An awful lot of effort is going these days into boosting product teams’ productivity: getting them to burn those story points faster, deliver the planned scope in every sprint and cycle, and generally ship more stuff, faster. The term “development velocity” is often thrown around by executives, but what they’re actually aiming for is upping …

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