Learnings from London: Critical thinking for product teams by Teresa Torres "Product people - Product managers, product designers, UX designers, UX researchers, Business analysts, developers, makers & entrepreneurs September 09 2022 False critical thinking, Empowered product teams, Learnings from London, Mind the Product Mind the Product Ltd 436 Learnings from London: Critical thinking for product teams by Teresa Torres Product Management 1.744

Learnings from London: Critical thinking for product teams by Teresa Torres

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We are four weeks away from our flagship event, #mtpcon London. What’s more, it’s 10 years old this year, with the first-ever #mtpcon happening in October 2012.

Our London stage has played host to an exceptional group of product speakers over the past decade, so each week in the run-up to this year’s event, we’ll bring you the most memorable moments from #mtpcon London in years gone by.

This week on our Learnings from London series, we go back to #mtpcon London 2017 to this illuminating talk by Teresa Torres. She shares a visual aid to help you focus your team’s energies and improve critical thinking.

Teresa Torres speaks at #mtpcon London 2017
Teresa Torres speaks at #mtpcon London 2017

Relativity and contrast

When working with a product team, Teresa says to compare and contrast different ideas instead of asking whether an idea is good or not. She uses a great analogy of comparing how fast Usain Bolt looks running by himself to him racing others and leading the pack.

Focus on opportunities over solution

Teresa says to focus on the problem and hone in on the opportunity that the problem creates. These should generate by the users themselves. These opportunities will be on a range of specifications to broader ideas – and can be difficult to prioritise because it’s not comparing like to like. She shares the diagram below for a solution to our prioritisation problems. You can read more about this solution tree here. 

Many solutions that address many needs make for a shallow product. Teresa says to focus on multiple solutions to one opportunity. “Not only are we getting the benefit of brainstorming, but we are also setting up ourselves well to compare and contrast,” The tree structure visualises what you’re considering, and makes you remember to constantly take on multiple solutions.

Bringing the whole team together

By being transparent in the opportunities you are exploring, you will bring your whole team into the process. Teresa says to prioritise as a cross-functional team. Dot vote to choose the best ideas. This means that everyone gets involved and buys into the solutions being tested. It gives you the best possible chance of reaching innovative solutions which occur when everyone can contribute their perspective.

Check out another amazing talk from #mtpcon London 2017: How High-Performance Organisations Innovate at Scale by Barry O’Reilly.


#mtpcon London is back this October (13th & 14th) and celebrating its 10th anniversary! Join us for our tried and tested hybrid conference format, for two full days of product inspiration (plus a day of optional pre-conference workshops!). Find out more here.

We are four weeks away from our flagship event, #mtpcon London. What’s more, it’s 10 years old this year, with the first-ever #mtpcon happening in October 2012. Our London stage has played host to an exceptional group of product speakers over the past decade, so each week in the run-up to this year’s event, we’ll bring you the most memorable moments from #mtpcon London in years gone by. This week on our Learnings from London series, we go back to #mtpcon London 2017 to this illuminating talk by Teresa Torres. She shares a visual aid to help you focus your team’s energies and improve critical thinking. [caption id="" align="alignnone" width="1600"]Teresa Torres speaks at #mtpcon London 2017 Teresa Torres speaks at #mtpcon London 2017[/caption]

Relativity and contrast

When working with a product team, Teresa says to compare and contrast different ideas instead of asking whether an idea is good or not. She uses a great analogy of comparing how fast Usain Bolt looks running by himself to him racing others and leading the pack.

Focus on opportunities over solution

Teresa says to focus on the problem and hone in on the opportunity that the problem creates. These should generate by the users themselves. These opportunities will be on a range of specifications to broader ideas – and can be difficult to prioritise because it’s not comparing like to like. She shares the diagram below for a solution to our prioritisation problems. You can read more about this solution tree here.  Many solutions that address many needs make for a shallow product. Teresa says to focus on multiple solutions to one opportunity. “Not only are we getting the benefit of brainstorming, but we are also setting up ourselves well to compare and contrast,” The tree structure visualises what you’re considering, and makes you remember to constantly take on multiple solutions.

Bringing the whole team together

By being transparent in the opportunities you are exploring, you will bring your whole team into the process. Teresa says to prioritise as a cross-functional team. Dot vote to choose the best ideas. This means that everyone gets involved and buys into the solutions being tested. It gives you the best possible chance of reaching innovative solutions which occur when everyone can contribute their perspective. Check out another amazing talk from #mtpcon London 2017: How High-Performance Organisations Innovate at Scale by Barry O’Reilly.
#mtpcon London is back this October (13th & 14th) and celebrating its 10th anniversary! Join us for our tried and tested hybrid conference format, for two full days of product inspiration (plus a day of optional pre-conference workshops!). Find out more here.

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