insights blog

Learning Fast vs. Failing Fast

By SVPG Partner Chris Jones At this point, nearly everyone in product at some point has heard phrases like “fail fast” or “embrace failure”. Though they are a bit tired, the intent of these phrases is still good: many product organizations are stuck in conservative...

The Four Big Risks

In the first edition of my book, INSPIRED, I discussed how successful products are valuable, usable and feasible, where I defined "feasible" as both technically feasible and business feasible. While it's easy to remember these three attributes, over the years I've...

INSPIRED V2

I’m happy to announce the results of my big project over the past year, which was to produce and release the second edition of INSPIRED: How To Create Tech Products Customers Love. The book could just as easily been characterized as “Volume 2” because it is not so...

Customer Inspired; Technology Enabled

One of the most enduring myths in the product world is that great products result from listening to your customers (or prospective customers).  But just as Jeff Bezos said in his latest Shareholder Letter, "No customer ever asked Amazon to create the Prime membership...

Leveraging Data Science

In the last several years, many leading companies have successfully integrated data science into their product operation and are reaping the benefits. But for most companies, these techniques remain foreign and intimidating. Some of these leaders understand the...

Process vs. Model

There’s an old saying which comes from the world of statistics: “All models are wrong, but some are useful.”  This has always resonated with me.  While conceptual models are never perfect, I find them to be an especially powerful tool for explaining important...

Analyzing Product Strategy

One of the key responsibilities of a strong product manager or product leader is to understand your market and industry; which trends are relevant, what the competitive landscape looks like, how business models are evolving, and the broader industry dynamics.  There...

Communicating Product Learnings

Sharing what we learn in a startup typically happens naturally because the product team and the company are pretty much the same thing.  However, as companies scale, this becomes substantially more difficult, yet it also becomes increasingly important to do. A...

The Customer Letter

In this article I’d like to discuss another discovery framing technique. For smaller and more typical size product discovery efforts, the opportunity assessment is usually sufficient.  But when embarking on a somewhat larger effort, there may in fact be multiple...

The GPM Role

I’ve been working with several companies that are experiencing rapid growth, and there’s a role in these growth-stage product organizations that I find especially effective. The role is titled “Group Product Manager,” usually referred to as “GPM.”  The role has been...

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