🛑 Stop getting out of the way / PM Snacks #56
Learn to align people on the why and how, how to set-up and use Customer Advisory Boards, and what you can learn from the scout mindset
1️⃣ What is the worst leadership advice you’ve heard?
Feb 2022 • 4 min read • #manageyourself #mustread
I’ve been struggling for years with my behaviour as a manager, afraid that my guidance or challenges could be perceived as a micro-managing tendency. According to JM (former CTO at Atlassian & Shopify), I was right to do it:
1/ As a leader (especially in product) you work hard to align people… but the second you leave an alignment meeting, you’re mis-aligned again. Alignment decays incredibly quickly. It’s normal. Accept it.
2/ Another big misconception about alignement is that most people stop at the why level. Actually many strategies are vague and also stop at the “why”…
3/ But don’t worry, JM has 3 tips: in 1:1 with your direct reports, advertise in what mode you operate - 25% of the time like a boss (keep them accountable for goals), 50% like a peer (they bring decisions that you challenge & brainstorm with them), 25% like a resource (ask them how you can help), differentiate decision types and how they should use you (decision tree), finally… alignment is your responsibility, be proactive and work on it (send your boss notes, seek feedback, share decision logic not just outcomes)
2️⃣ An inside look at our Customer Advisory Board
Aug 2020 • 18 min read • #discovery
If you are in B2B, there is a good chance you have heard about Customer Advisory Boards (or “user clubs” if you are as old as me). The idea is to create a close relationship with clients, who could help you improve the product by answering surveys, testing prototypes, or letting you observe them (= my favorite way of learning). In this piece, Maze shares some advice on how to recruit customers & how to run these sessions. Just keep in mind that it could be worth the effort to use other channels to get to know people who are not your clients yet or at least not among power users (= less biases).
3️⃣ Research Questions Are Not Interview Questions
Jan 2019 • 6 min read • #discovery
Since we are reading about Customer Advisory Boards, we might as well talk about using the right kind of research method.
1/ A good research question is specific & actionable, while being answerable with the research methods available to you, and without obvious results. For example: What are the greatest barriers to saving money for Canadians in their 30s?
2/ Only after you have identified your research questions can you select the best way to answer the question. Observing, testing, interviewing (non exhaustive).
Btw, Axel is working on a discovery course and he needs your help (1 min max). If you help him, you will actually help yourself cos I believe he will create a stellar (and much needed) content.
4️⃣ The Scout Mindset
Mar 2022 • 6 min read • #book #manageyourself
I truly believe that, to improve our craft we need to master #mindsets, #processes and #tools. So deep dive in this quick article to learn about the wonders of the scout mindset: adapting to change, dealing with uncertainty, and embracing facts and evidence as it comes. The one that struck me the most: we need to lean into confusion… (and think in bets, but I’m always talking about this one)
In a story in the book, a London hospital of homeopathy had a much better record of treating patients for cholera than other hospitals at the time. But medical professionals at the time decided to ignore the results because they didn’t believe in homeopathic medicine and were confused by the reported results, so didn’t pursue them further. If they had, they would have learned that things like hygiene and hydration were contributing to better outcomes for patients, and could have improved outcomes for other patients, too.
⏳ My Billion Dollar Mistake
Apr 2019 • 12 min read • #execution #productculture #shared1yearago #pmsnacks28
To help you find out about some of the previous content I shared, I’m adding this new section featuring the most clicked link shared 1 year ago.
You (probably) know my taste for first person stories (or biographies). In this one, Hiten Shah explains how they missed a 1B$ opportunity with Kissmetrics. They went from opening a new category, inventing the funnel & live view we all know, to losing the market. It's a good reminder of the importance of 1/ discovery, 2/ speed, 3/ leaders not dropping "bombs" every now & then. Hit like if your CEO slowed you down with their last GREAT new idea ;)
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Have a great week!
10y+ in product, co-founder of 🥕 uku.wtf, coach & advisor
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