April included some extremely interesting topics featured in the product management community, and I decided to compile a list of some of my favorites. One of the most prominent themes I noticed is the concept of going back to the basics and focusing on the fundamental traits that make up a product manager. That being said, of course there are a handful of other topics covered from combating feature bloating, to a unique look at agile innovation, this month was definitely full of fantastic articles.
1. Product Owners: How to Get Your Development Team to Love You
Daniel Elizalde delves into the tricky topic of how to get your team to like you as a product manager. Working with a team can be tough, and as product managers we are expected to be leaders and trend setters. We’re also expected to set an inspiring example for our team in order to maximize their productivity. Elizalde understands these challenges and provides us with some helpful tips from recognizing what matters, to fulfilling your responsibilities in order to successfully lead your team to victory.
2. Product Management Fundamentals
Product management is a field that at times seems to fall through the cracks. Often, people don’t completely understand why product management exists, and why it is essential for the development of the product. Dag Olav Norem outlines some of the key fundamental reasons as to why product managers are essential to a company. He begins by simply asking “why”, and adding to his question by asking “what”, Norem provides fascinating insight to this seemingly simple topic.
3. A Four-Tier Approach to Combating Feature Bloat
Sara Aboulafia discusses the importance of avoiding falling into the trap of feature overload. She stresses the importance of being hyper-aware of your feature decisions in order to avoid selecting too many features for your product. Aboulafia states in her article that being informed, mindful, selective and cutthroat when deciding which features to use will help you to avoid the dangerous trap of selecting irrelevant features, and produce a successful product.
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4. Four Product Management Skills You Might Not Know You Need
As product managers, the skillset we are required to possess is widely ranged and highly dynamic. The great thing is you can choose what works for you and your team, instead of sticking to a set of universal rules. Leading a development process is different for everybody depending on the team members, the company, and most importantly the product. Andre Theus lists four product manager skills that could be very useful. I always find it interesting and helpful to read about other possible traits that I may be able to utilize in my own job.
5. How Product Management Can Lead to a CXO Position
The role of a product manager is all encompassing. Ranging from required business knowledge to developing market plans and strategic roadmaps, the product manager’s job is never quiet. Due to the versatility of the position, Mary Shacklett suggests that product managers set themselves up for a road of promotions in their career. Because they are required to enter the job with a vast amount of knowledge in multiple fields, Shacklett states that product management is a great way to kick-start your career if you’re aiming to end up on the top.
6. The Secret History of Agile Innovation
In this interesting article the topic of agile innovation is tackled, specifically how and where it originated from. This trio of authors provides a fascinating timeline that traces the history of agile methodologies, and identifies how it managed to progress into what it is today. Read all about how agile has changed software development to a realm well outside IT. In product management we rely on various software’s to develop and market our products and learning the history of agile innovation allows for a better understanding of then system as a whole.
7. Product Management Rule #42: These Are Our Rules. What Are Yours?
Brain Lawley shares his insights based the popular bestseller, “42 Rules of Product Management,” written by Greg Cohen. The rules listed in the book are useful to any product manager, Lawley states, and he advises that product managers take advantage of the wisdom, although it is up to the individual to apply the advice to their jobs. It’s always useful to read reviews about books before you buy them, and I think Brian Lawley wrote a fantastic article about this useful book.
8. Product Manager- Unlock the Secret to Better Product Ownership
This article I recently published talks about the steps to creating better product ownership-something every product manager should focus on. With these tips you can become more involved with your product in order to create a successful business model. It’s always important to reevaluate your methodologies, and by taking a step back to look at it from a different angle you can get a better understanding of how to improve your product ownership.