Dec 14

Reversing Cognitive Decline – Podcast Episode #4

As a product manager, one of your most precious resources is your “cognitive storage tank.” It’s like a real fuel tank – when it’s exhausted, your cognitive abilities stop working well. And when that happens, it means you can’t be as innovative, you can’t be as creative, and your decisions get worse. To improve our effectiveness as product managers, one key step is managing the cognitive storage tank.

In this podcast I describe some techniques and tools for eliminating wasteful leaks from your storage tank – I hope the ideas will be helpful for you as you improve your effectiveness as a product manager.

Let me know in the comments on the show notes if you have additional thoughts or questions.

Show Notes

If you like this podcast, please subscribe via iTunes (you can search for “responsibility authority” to find the listing) or your favorite subscription method via this feed. And please consider rating and reviewing the podcast on iTunes. The feedback is very helpful for me.

Nov 14

Why “CEO of the Product” Is So Last Year – Podcast Episode #3

How do you describe product management? Do you find yourself saying “I’m the CEO of the product?” Do you think anyone understands what you mean when you say that?

This week’s podcast talks about a better way to answer that question, one that puts the fundamental job of product management – solving problems for people who will pay for the solutions – front and center.

Missing from the podcast is this image (for obvious reasons):


The Product Management Framework

At the end of the podcast I mention three things you can do immediately to start putting this information to use:

  1. Clearly articulate the problem your product is solving for your customer, and write that down so it becomes a corporate asset
  2. Make sure you validate that this really is a problem that customers in the market will pay for a solution for
  3. Start explaining how your product is better than its competitors at solving that problem – which is why customers should buy yours rather than theirs

I hope this framework will be helpful for you in thinking about what you do as a product manager. Let me know in the comments if you have additional thoughts or questions. You can subscribe the podcast via this feed, or via iTunes.

Nov 14

All The Responsibility, None Of The Authority Podcast – A Roll-Your-Own Product Management System of Record

I’ve posted the latest episode from the All The Responsibility, None Of The Authority podcast on how to be an effective product manager. The topic for this episode is something I’ve written about a few times – the product management system of record.

We do a lot of stuff in the course of being product managers, but most of our output – customer interview notes, value propositions, sales support materials – has no defined place to live. This means it’s difficult to collaborate around the information, and it’s difficult to get evergreen value out of it. In this episode I outline a system of record for all this product management output that your product management organization can create out of existing tools, like a wiki. (At least until someone builds a commercial system for us.)

I am presenting a workshop on this topic – Building A Product Management System of Record With Baling Wire and Chewing Gum – at the San Francisco Product Summit later this week. Check it out if you can. Otherwise, I’ll make sure you hear about the recording if there is one, or I’ll do a video of the workshop at a later date and share it to the community.

Episode Topics

  • Why we need a system of record
  • What to put in it
  • How doing a little extra manual work will pay off in making us much more effective
  • How to start creating a system of record for customer interactions using a wiki
  • Potential risks and disadvantages of my proposed wiki-based, “baling wire and chewing gum” system of record

Please let me know what you think in the comments on this post.

Show Notes

  • There are no special notes or links for this episode, but when I get videos and further instructions up, I’ll update this article to link to them.

The feed for the podcast is http://nilsdavis.com/feed/podcast. It should be available on iTunes in a few days, and I will update this article when that happens.

I hope you enjoy this episode! Please let me know what you think, and if you’d like me to cover any particular topics. Feedback is really motivating!