Category: Product Management

  • Startup Hiring

    I’ve been helping a few startups with hiring, have hired large teams and have been a candidate on the other side. Labor is getting more and more competitive and the best candidates have lots of options so it’s important to have a good process. To hire the best people you need to see a lot […]

  • One-Pagers (Product Specs)

    One-Pagers (short product specification documents) are an important part of product development. Crystal clear thinking upfront can often save multiples of that time down the road when you don’t have to throw away expensive high fidelity design or production level code. One-Pagers also allow teams to get on the same page (particularly in distributed, async […]

  • The “Why” Behind Work

    Aligning on “Why” for product development work is always important, but it’s especially important for distributed teams. When the “Why” is consistently missing, projects end up feeling like a list of context free tasks from ‘up above’ and teams can become demotivated and resentful – no one likes being told what to do all the […]

  • Product Development Practices

    This post is a collection of some product development practices that I think are valuable. It’s not meant to be an exhaustive list, just a collection of thoughts. Goals and Planning “Plans are worthless, but planning is everything” Dwight Eisenhower, 1954 Planning allows teams to get aligned and having clear goals, priorities and metrics for […]

  • Role of a Product Lead

    I’ve been leading product development teams for over 10 years in different industries (ads, gaming, fintech, tools) and customer segments (consumer, enterprise, SMBs). There are a few things have been consistently true across these industries, but particularly at scale. I typically broken up my role into four different buckets: Principles: What is our building culture? […]

  • Hiring Product Managers at Scale

    In this post, I summarize a process that I recommend for hiring product managers at a growth company, adapted for a distributed hiring environment (most applicable to a company that will hire multiple product managers). I’ve hired and trained over 40 product managers over the course of my career, and this draws on my experience […]

  • Hiring your First Product Manager

    When you’re running a small startup, you may ask yourself when to hire your first product manager and what you should look for in the candidate. This is a question I get from founders fairly often. Startup founders in technology companies usually are great at least one of the following things; making stuff and selling […]

  • Product Roadmaps

    Over the last few months, I’ve been thinking about how to design a lightweight framework for product development that fits in with different ‘product cultures’ and scales from a few teams of a few people to up to 50 people. My current ‘best guess’ of this is a modified version of the Now/Next/Later framework that Noah […]

  • Gamification for Software

    I spent 5 years working at Pocket Gems, a free to play mobile gaming company in product management where I helped design, develop, and manage most of our products. Nail the ‘Core Loop’ first I often get asked by friends about how they can incorporate gamification techniques into their products. Most of the time, folks […]

  • A few Management Frameworks

    As a manager or manager of managers of product development teams, it can be hard to focus on the right things and to make sure that you’re making progress on your ever growing list. To help others overcome the same challenges, I am sharing a few of my personal frameworks that have helped me focus […]

  • Getting into Product Management

    I get asked frequently for advice from folks who are looking to get into product management and often send them slightly customized versions of the same thing. I decided to write something a little more comprehensive and share it broadly.  There are a few phases of work for folks looking to get into product management: […]

  • Insight from independent sources

    In my opinion, one of the hardest parts of product and general management is drawing insight from the right sources to determine ‘product health’ to identify where to focus, especially when managing multiple product lines. In my experience I try pull data from three independant, uncorrelated sources to inform where I should focus my effort – […]