Mike and the crew at Alpha chat with Drift's David Cancel.
In Summary: David Cancel is a serial founder and former CPO of Hubspot. He kicked off a huge debate recently when he said previous experience didn't matter when hiring PMs. He is also reshaping the traditional product organisation.
The Product Teams at Drift work without roadmaps, release plans, process and deadlines. How do they do this? Engineers at Drift 'own' products end to end - from the code, to QA, to customer feedback.
David establishes themes and metrics for the year and then empowers engineers to work out how to do this and makes them accountable for the results.
Another masterclass from Linkedin's Sachin Rekhi.
In Summary: If you enjoyed reading his excellent slidedeck on the Art of Product Management recently, here's a chance to hear Sachin presenting it in detail at Wharton Business School.
Product managers drive the vision, strategy, design, and execution of their product. While one can quickly comprehend the basic responsibilities of the role, mastering each of these dimensions is truly an art form that requires constant honing.
Drawing on examples from Stewart Butterfield (Slack) and Elon Musk and covering personas, segmentation and design, Sachin deep dives into each dimension but advises Product Managers to limit how many dimensions they innovate upon.
No surprises, says Usersvoice's Sara Aboulafia.
In Summary: For Product Managers, a lack of stakeholder traction can often be a bigger roadblock than a lack of customer traction. It’s vital PMs identify who these folks are and turn them into advocates for their product.
Sara identifies 3 types of stakeholders (the executive, the team itself and support functions like legal), all of whom need to buy in to the PM's plan for it to proceed smoothly.
Product Managers can’t do their job if people don’t trust them. Gaining trust means managing expectations, ensuring people feel listened to and using data (not opinion) to drive decision-making.
Seize the day, says Trello's Jessica Barnett.
In Summary: In any Product Management interview there will be a time when you get to ask questions of the interviewer. This is an important opportunity to understand the company you are considering joining and not one to be wasted.
Jessica lists 5 of the most incisive questions you can ask (as well as who to ask) if you want to find out what it's really like behind the scenes.
"What was the last thing you shipped?" is key if you want to understand how easy it is to get things done, "What drives product decisions" is a good way to understand how the company uses data and "What is the hardest thing about doing product?" will indicate if there is an honest view on how things can be improved.
It's the services, says Mobile Dev Demo.
In Summary: With a typical lack of explanation, Apple recently upped its game in the appstore. Product Managers and developers (used to baking 7-10 days approval time into their release plans) suddenly found their apps approved within 24 hours - celebration ensued as well as disbelief.
Why Apple have chosen to do this is the subject of much debate. Most agree that, with iPhone growth peaking and no new products on the horizon, they are beginning to focus on services as a key source of revenue growth. Perhaps it's just good housekeeping. A supply chain guy at heart, Tim Cook hates long queues and is very good at reducing them.