April saw Mind the Product run a focus week on “learning to lead”, a podcast from Pluralsight’s Ha Phan on machine learning in discovery, and publish plenty more insightful content besides.
Here’s a recap of our top posts from the past month.
Measuring the right North Star metric
Accenture Business Agility and Product Coach Sebastian Straube gave us an article on Measuring the right North Star metric. The article focuses on measuring the right things in order to build successful products. Sebastian examines different types of metrics and provides an actionable framework – the North Star framework – that product managers can use to measure the path from customer problem to reaching the product vision. He also takes us through some examples of how this framework might work in specific businesses.
You’re not the CEO of anything
A revisit to Martin Eriksson’s influential post Product managers — you are not the CEO of anything proved very popular with the product community this month, showing us again how the debate over the scope of the product manager’s role will run and run. In it, Martin explains why he disagrees with Ben Horowitz’s view that product managers are the CEOs of their products. He emphasises that product management is a team sport, and that even product leaders are not CEOs of their products. He says: “You are not Steve Jobs, you are not a lone genius designing a product from your ivory tower. Never forget that as a product leader you are only as good as your team. Setting them up for success and giving them the space and air cover to do their best is ultimately how you and your product will be successful.”
Easy ways to engage stakeholders
An article looking at ways to engage stakeholders was up among our top reads in April. It includes plenty of nuggets of advice from product managers who have experience in getting and keeping their stakeholders engaged. For example, product managers should borrow from tried and tested sales techniques to engage stakeholders, and they should make sure they’re consistent in their communication, even when there’s nothing to say.
Product management dysfunctions
A ProductTank London talk from Ben Foster, CPO at Whoop, explaining some of the most common product management dysfunctions and how to solve them was one of the most viewed videos this month. Ben’s talk underlines the importance of a product strategy, and shows how having a product strategy can prevent product management dysfunctions from occurring.
Unifying agile processes for product teams
Case studies are always instructive so it’s heartening to see that a case study from Oliver Borders at AZA Finance on unifying agile processes for product teams was one of our top reads this month. Oliver outlines how product teams are organised, how meetings are structured at AZA Finance and how different types of meetings can benefit your overall product strategy.