The Generalist

A product manager should ideally be a generalist. Yes, some specialization is required, but in what area? Statistical analysis of research data so you can draw better conclusions? System architecture so your feature specifications make more practical sense? Front-end programming so engineers don’t rebel against you? Graphic design so you can faithfully model the product? …

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I Can See Clearly Now

I can clearly remember the day I first watched a video playing on a color LCD screen. It was many years ago, on my brand new Windows 95 laptop. When I first turned it on it started playing a cheesy 70’s song covered by Jimmy Cliff. That catchy tune brightened my day and left me …

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Long Live the Radio

I spent three of the best years of my life working at a radio station. This cemented my love of the medium and made me a fan for life. Although video is the undeclared king of the internet era, radio can entertain, educate and inform in situations and locations where video is inappropriate or illegal. …

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Leaving a Working Void

After three years at my job I decided to move on; my position will not be filled for a while. Some people may have a weird feeling about not having another person take their place: after all, if they don’t replace you, you probably haven’t done much. I, however, think it’s the ultimate badge of …

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Writing Rig

The book business is undergoing a revolution – not only in the way books are produced (electronically) and published (by the authors themselves), but also in the way books are written in the first place. I’d like to describe the “writing rig” I’m using to write my book, a method that could have only been …

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What do Product Managers Wish for?

What do product managers wish for? They wish they could decide what their product should be like without the burden of customer requests, usage data, management dictums, and engineering pushbacks. They wish they could decide what’s best for the customer and get it implemented with no qualms. They wish they could just do it. It’s …

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The Lonely People of 2012

“All the lonely people Where do they all come from? All the lonely people Where do they all belong?”    – The Beatles, Eleanor Rigby Eleanor Rigby spent her lonely days at a church back in 1966. In 2012 she would hang out at a coffee shop, staring at her laptop, pretending to be busy. …

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Good Robot, Bad Robot

Automatic pool cleaners, known as robots, are out of sight for most people. Even pool owners don’t care much about them – as long as they work. A recent experience with a broken one thought me an important lesson in product innovation and marketing. Although it happened in a niche market, this interesting case applies …

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Hire the Future, Not the Past

A recent study found that recruiters spend 6 seconds scanning a resume before making their initial decision. The study is biased and superficial, but if true, it must means that most of the reader’s attention goes to recognizable elements, like brand names. Big mistake.