• The Skills You Need to Become a Full-stack Product Person
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    The Skills You Need to Become a Full-stack Product Person

    Question: What do you call someone who has all the skills to validate, build, launch, market, and sell products? Answer: A unicorn. Just kidding! It’s just a full-stack product person. The term “Full-stack product person” is a relatively new term that piggybacks off the term “full-stack developer” – i.e a developer who can work on both the front-end and back-end of an application. A full-stack product person goes even one level higher (or is it deeper?) and can not only create their own products, but market and sell them as well. Their skills are incredibly vast. Not only do they have software engineering chops, but they can also write well,…

  • What to put in your product specs so you get back exactly what you want
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    How to Write Product Specs Your Engineers Will Love

    Call them what you want. Product specs, product requirements documents, feature specs, JIRA user stories…whatever floats your boat. Whichever terminology you choose, a document outlining your reasoning for building what you’re building and how you’d like to see it turn out is critical for the success of your product. We like to call these documents product specs, so we’ll stick with that for the remainder of the article. Product specs outline what you’re going to build, for whom, and why it’s important. They are especially important for product managers, founders, and other folks overseeing the development of a new feature from beginning to end. Btw, if you are outsourcing development you really need…

  • featured image for how to handle an engineering team that doesn't implement features correctly
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    Why isn’t your engineering team listening to you?

    You spend lots of time writing tickets. Like, hours and hours worth of time after you already spent most of your day in meetings. But there’s a problem when engineering delivers the goods. They’re quite a bit different from what you envisioned. “Did the engineering team even read the ticket?!?!! ” you ask. “Are they even listening to me?!?!?!” You may find things come back with extra scope, behaviors you wrote out to be different, or perhaps it doesn’t look anything like the wireframes. No matter what it is that they delivered, it’s definitely not like what you intended. If this has happened before, perhaps you’ve tried checking in with…

  • featured image for blog post 3 ways to increase trustworthiness of a product. two hands cupped over and under one another on a blue background
    articles

    3 Ways to Increase Trustworthiness of a Product

    Can you think of a product you no longer trust? Maybe it’s one where what you purchased was broken for so long it had a serious impact on your time and ability to get things done? Perhaps you purchased something at a store where your credit card details were skimmed? Or could you have possibly bought something where the salesperson didn’t quite give you the full details you should’ve known to make a good decision? If any of these scenarios happened to you, you’ll probably avoid going back to those places or products for a very long time. Why? Because you just don’t trust them. Trustworthiness, while not a metric…

  • developer tools don't work for product managers
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    Your developer’s tools won’t work for you. Here’s why.

    Repeat after me: JIRA is for developers. Not product managers. Yes, you can dabble in your developer’s tools and collaborate with them to answer their questions and get technical work done. BUT, when you need to get product management work done — their tools are not the tools you’re looking for. You need your own product management specific tools. But why? Why can’t I just use what they’re using. I mean, we’re already paying for them! Well it has mostly because development tools are not built for unstructured work. Structured versus unstructured work Developers do a lot of structured work while PMs do a lot of unstructured work. Developers often have…

  • how to move from a project manager to a product manager role
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    How Do I Move from Project Management to Product Management?

    Are you currently a project manager? Want to make the shift into the (obviously more awesome) product management space? Wonderful! I’d highly recommend making the shift. I was previously a project manager and now am a product director…let’s just say I don’t think I will ever go back to being a project manager. Product management is just too darn fun. Once you decide you’re interested in becoming a product manager, the big question becomes……how do you make the shift?!?! First: Shift your mindset The first thing you’ll have to do is shift your mindset from “projects” to “products”. While there may be facets of project management in product management, your time is…

  • using notion for product management
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    3 Ways to Use Notion as a Product Manager

    I’m a huge fan of Notion. It is a great tool for text-related tasks and is supremely helpful in organizing product related thoughts, documents, and data. If you feel like Evernote has become too cumbersome, Bear is a little too simple, Trello doesn’t offer a whole lot of formats, and all-in-one product management tools are overkill, then Notion may be worth checking out for you. There are a few use cases that align perfectly with product management we’ll cover in this article. In particular, we’ll cover roadmaps, strategy docs, and internal documentation and how to create them in Notion. Roadmaps Roadmaps are a core tool of any product manager. Whether…

  • squash bugs and not hold up your product roadmap
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    4 Ways to Squash Bugs — Without Holding Up Your Product Roadmap

    A PM has many roles. Bug catcher and collector should be one of them. Sometimes you catch a bug in your product. Sometimes automated testing picks it up. But a lot of the time, bugs are found by customers. How embarrassing. It’s like someone coming into your home and seeing a cockroach scuttle across the floor. Like a polite house guest who “chooses” not to see that spider in the corner of your guestroom, some customers may overlook bugs in your product if they don’t have a big impact on them. However, for serious bugs, a customer will likely reach out to the support team. In turn, your support team or…

  • the most commonly recommended product management certifications
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    The Certifications 100’s of Real Product Managers Think Are Worth Your Time

    There are a lot of product manager online hangouts on the interwebz. Slack groups, forums, facebook groups, blogs, twitter profiles, you name it — they exist. They are a great opportunity to learn new skills, see what other people are working on, and receive personalized advice on specific scenarios you may be struggling with. Members of these forums are often experienced PMs who love to hang out with other PMs and help new PMs out whenever possible. Because of the expertise present, many contributors seeking to switch to product management roles come asking questions to these folks about how to get into the PM role (which is awesome I might…