My Product Principles
I wrote these at the beginning of my journey within product management and these principles guide my decision making on a daily basis. These principles were written from the perspective of doing product management for data products but most could easily be used for other industries.
- Grow. Products not growing faster than the market are becoming less relevant over time.
- We are a subscription product. Customers buy us every second. We survive if they keep choosing us daily.
- Ask yourself: “what am I requiring a user learn? how would they know to find this? when would they look?”
- First, write down the problem.
- If nobody’s using it, it’s not a product.
- Be native. Don’t fork. Blog posts users find should work.
- Be empathetic: Talk to users. Understand and feel their pains as directly as possible. Remember you are not the user.
- Remember users are busy. If we ask our customers to take an action, we’ve failed.
- Have a curated dashboard – behind that offer a ton of raw data.
- Be consistent - if you’re going to use a trick, use it a lot.
- Be proactive; find problems and reach out. Don’t mistake having an answer for someone finding it.
- Simple is better than easy.
- Prefer fewer better features.
- Don’t build it till you need it.
- Have the fewest, simplest dependencies possible.
- Be ultimately responsible for what you do.
- Performance is a feature.
- Availability builds trust with customers. If you break that trust, be transparent and start building it back.
- Clear boundaries around product surface area are needed to allow teams to build effective solutions
- Disassociate the problem from the implementation. Let the team come up with the best solution.
- Pager and operational burden are real
- With any new team, define a shared set of values for how we operate as a team and build product