Deep Product

Insights and advice from the deeper layers of product leadership

How to Turn Product Disagreements With CEOs Into Productive Discussions

Saying ‘no’ to your manager is a must-have skill for a product leader. But leaving the ‘no’ just with that would often lead to counterproductive communication and lack of trust. Whether you avoid saying ‘no’ altogether because of that, or say too many ‘no’s, here is how to turn a disagreement into an opportunity for better solutions.

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The Right Principles of Agile

Agile is an awesome approach, but only if done right. Many teams implement what they believe is Agile, but they end up doing many things without enjoying the real benefits. Organizations then think Agile is a problem and sometimes ban it. Here is what you should keep your eyes on to do it right for everyone’s benefit.

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The Chameleon Quality

We all have different identities that we use in different situations. As product leaders, using these identities smartly is a powerful tool to make an impact. Here is how to use it with the people you work with as well as your customers.

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How to Maintain Your Product Agility With Non-agile Stakeholders

I’m a big believer in Agile. Aren’t we all? Apparently not. When I hear CEOs and senior managers complaining about Agile, they have legitimate concerns. But we don’t want to throw away the baby with the bathwater. So here is what you can do to remain agile when your organization sees things differently.

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Everything Is a Choice

We all take many things as given. This perception defines how we think and operate. But many of the things that we see as objective constraints are actually choices we or someone else made along the way. Here is how to allow yourself to choose right.

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Smart Use of Principles

Principles are a very powerful tool in product leadership. They can help you create clarity and alignment, and separate the wheat from the chaff. Here are a few ways to use them in your everyday tasks, and some cases where they are not the right tool.

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When the CEO Has a New Product Idea

CEOs have product ideas all the time. It’s a legitimate component of their ability to lead. But how can you lead the product if the CEO gives very specific guidance? The answer lies in making yourself their thinking buddy. Here is how to do it.

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Are You Bounded by Authority?

Everyone treats authority differently. Some of it is cultural, and some of it is personal, but how you treat authority impacts your ability to lead. Especially in product management, where authority is limited, you need to act beyond the limits of formality. Here is how.

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The Value Assessment Framework (Part 3)

The value assessment framework allows you to identify gaps in any of the value layers – definition, delivery, and perception. But not all gaps are alike, and not all of them need to be treated the same way. Some even need to be left untouched. Here is a guide on how to tell the difference and how to address each.

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The Value Assessment Framework (Part 2)

Your product’s value needs to be defined, delivered, and perceived as such by your customers. If this isn’t challenging enough, what your customers want and need varies based on their profile and maturity with your product. Here is a simple framework to help you understand what they need, and more importantly – where are your current gaps.

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The Value Assessment Framework (Part 1)

Your product sells not for its features, but for the value it brings to your customers. Defining the value though is easier said than done. True product value lies in understanding and meeting the deeper, often unspoken needs of customers, beyond just functionality. Here’s a three-step approach to ensure products connect with users on a more meaningful level.

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The Power of Summaries

Product leadership is such a hard role, one of the hardest. You live at the heart of endless conflicts caused by a variety of points of view that collide with each other. You are involved in complex decision-making under extreme uncertainty. Here is a simple tool that will help you shine and help others along the way.

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