insights blog

Knocking Down Walls

One of the great things about startups is that they are so small that there’s almost no organizational structure to speak of.  Basically everyone there is just trying to create something people want. But as organizations grow, people start spending more of their time...

Regaining Your Product Mojo

In my last article, I talked about the problem where your product organization has been relegated to the role of a service organization, largely documenting the decisions and desires of others.  I must have struck a chord because I received a record number of...

Product Management as a Service Organization

Product Management as a Service Organization Posted by Marty Cagan on January 13, 2010 Tags: best practices Probably one of the most common complaints I get from CEO's of mid- to large-sized companies is the lack of innovation and thought leadership from their product...

The Product Decade

I don’t think there has ever been a better time to be a product person than right now.  In fact, I’m fully expecting the decade about to begin to be far and away the most productive in terms of innovation. There are several reasons for this: First, the devices –...

No Silver Bullet

More than 20 years ago Fred Brooks published a seminal essay on the nature of software, called “No Silver Bullet: Essence and Accidents of Software Engineering”.  If you’ve never read it I’d highly encourage it, as even though it’s ancient by the standards of our...

Outsourcing Core Competencies

I work exclusively with commercial software product organizations.  Organizations that must create products and services that thousands or millions of users must make an independent decision to use or buy.   This is in contrast to custom software companies that create...

Product Discovery Diary

When product managers and designers move from the very linear, Waterfall-based processes, to the much more iterative and exploratory discovery-based process that I and others advocate, they sometimes take a little while to appreciate and adapt to the fast pace and...

The Product Discovery Plan

In my last article, I discussed the situation where Product Discovery is essentially not discovery at all, but rather just a mad dash of just-in-time spec writing so that the engineers can be kept busy.  I discussed how important it is that the date not be driving...

Feed The Beast

For those that haven’t heard the term before, “feed the beast” refers to one of the most common problems with product teams, and one of the top reasons for failed projects.  It’s very easy to spot.  If you find a product manager that is scrambling to finish up his PRD...

Holistic View of Product

For a startup, where there’s typically just one product team, it’s not too hard for the leaders to keep in their heads a holistic view of the product.  However, this quickly becomes much tougher as the company grows first to a larger product and soon to multiple...

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