The 59th Edition - On Negotiation Skills for Product Managers, How Today’s Product Builders Find Product Market Fit, Annual Review Prompts & 5 Product Books From 2022 I’m Excited About
Did you know the origin of the phrase "balls to the wall"?
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Did you know that "Balls to the wall" is not a sexual expression? In WWII, there was a ball on top of the throttles that the hand could hold onto. To get the most power, it was "balls to the wall" to push the throttle all the way forward toward the firewall. The Stanford "bad words" initiative now wants students to say "accelerate efforts" in place of "balls to the wall". (source)
📚 Negotiation Skills for Product Managers
This is a surprisingly practical guide that will help your negotiation strategies in the new year.
While unfortunately there are no shortcuts, at least you can be a bit more deliberate about your negotiations.
“If you’re struggling to identify what the interests of the other person might be, ask why they believe in or want something. And ask them why they disagree with your perspective as well. This will often uncover the true nature of the interests at play.”
One of the most important things I learned was to stop thinking of stakeholders as annoying problem-makers that won't help the product team at all. Instead, I see them as people who must help build a truly successful product.
It's not enough to just build something and put it out there. You also need to grow it, spread the word about it, and support it.
👀 How Today’s Product Builders Find Product Market Fit
I’ve been really digging Sachin’s “Deliberate Startup” take on Lean Startup, which he delivers via the new Reforge course.
For those of you without a subscription, this video starts to answer how the general framework works, and what the key differences are.
Next year, I’ll be trying out this methodology on a few of my bets:
I wondered why I sometimes said I was "bored" at work when I was stuck. Makes sense now…
“Boredom doesn’t have much to do with being idle. Instead, it has more to do with desire, and the inability to direct that desire toward anything meaningful.”
Every time I see a prioritisation spreadsheet & process with customer requests in each row, I hear these words…
“I’m convinced that most product managers / designers have no idea what to build and have instead created a bunch of process to mask this failure.”
Annual Review Prompts: If you’re doing a big retro for the year, grab these prompts!
Ditch The Meeting: John Cutler crafted a scoring system with ChatGPT to decide if you should go to a meeting. It’s actually pretty solid.
5 Product Books Released In 2022 That I Just Added To My Reading List: I make a point to see if there is anything new I can learn from the books in the world of product, so I scour Amazon at the end of the year. I also found 5 bonus books that I think you might like:
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Product management in New Zealand (where I live) is still a relatively immature discipline. I also came into it late via data science and UX. I may be older than others, but I often feel like a rookie.
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See you next week.