PM Hardcore

Announcing The Secret Product Manager Handbook

PM Hardcore

I’m excited to announce The Secret Product Manager Handbook is available for pre-order ! When I started in product management, there were no classes, books, or online resources for product managers. I always wanted the “secret handbook” – so I wrote it.

How To Say “No” To A Feature Request

PM Hardcore

No (picture credit at the bottom). Sometimes No Is The Right Answer. Can you talk to me about a time when you had to say no to a customer? Why did you have to say no? How did you handle it?

Trending Sources

The Secret Product Management Framework

PM Hardcore

One of the most challenging questions about product management has been – in my experience – “What is Product Management?”. In this post, I share a simple model or framework to answer this question.

Should You Be A Product Manager?

PM Hardcore

Have you built something? Have you led a team? Product management is a hot, hot profession right now. It’s one of the most important roles in a product company , especially in high tech. But is it right for you?

Take training beyond your LMS: technical considerations for extended enterprise

You know the benefits of extended enterprise. But how do execute the plan? Learn more about the technical considerations that can help you create a strategy to manage the delivery and tracking of product training across a variety of systems.

Mental Models for Product Managers – Part 2

PM Hardcore

Brain Wiring (by Wellcome Images, CC licensed). In part 1 I introduced mental models and some reasons they are important. And I provided a few “general purpose” examples. In this part we dive into what you really came here for – product management-specific mental models.

The Value Inequality – The Real Meaning Of “Customer Value”

PM Hardcore

Cost Plus Pricing = No Good. You must balance value versus (multiple) costs to determine price. (By By Hans Splinter, Attribution-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-ND 2.0)). People sometimes ask me “how should I price my product?” so I Googled it. I found a LOT of blog posts about pricing.

A New Focus On Product Management Opportunity

PM Hardcore

Looking through to the next stage. A long work in progress. This blog has been going for a long long time. It started as a site to share ideas and lessons I’ve learned in my career as a product manager for enterprise software products. Recently a bigger theme has started to emerge and coalesce.

Blog 57

What Will Product Management Be Like In 5 Years?

PM Hardcore

The future is hard to tease out, but here’s what will happen in product management’s future. (CC CC 2.0 by PunkToad). Earlier this year Janna Bastow of ProdPad put out a call for opinions on the future of product management. I quickly responded then.

Mixing Qualitative & Quantitative Data with Storyboarding

Speaker: Tristan Kromer, Lean Agile Coach, Kromatic

Qualitative vs. Quantitative is a silly argument. Qualitative data from UXers should not compete against the quantitative data product owners need for their business model. Both are necessary to have a complete understanding of where the desirability of the product meets the viability of the business.

How Are You Going to Fix Onboarding?

PM Hardcore

You have a team of engineers and a three month runway – how are you going to fix onboarding? That’s a question I actually got in a product management job interview a while ago. My answer was, “that’s a really good question but I have no way of answering yet.”. Operating room or aspirin?

This Framework Gives You Product Management Super Powers

PM Hardcore

Breakthrough! The Secret Product Management Framework. Finally writing down the Secret Product Management Framework was a revelation for me. It put all the activities I do as a product manager into perspective. We find and validate market problems for which customers will pay for a solution.

To 10x Your Profits Start With Retrospectives

PM Hardcore

20% is boring. As many of you know, there’s a technique called a “ retrospective ” in scrum, or you might call it a debrief. After each sprint the team spends a short amount of time reviewing what went well, what could be improved, and what they should stop doing.

Visiting Customers? What?

PM Hardcore

Nothing Important Happens In The Office. We product managers are always told that we need to spend a lot of time with customers, and with the market, to create successful products. This advice, while good, is not actionable. It’s vague and aspirational.

Writing For Product Managers: Readability Is More Persuasive

PM Hardcore

In my Writing Tips for Product Managers post I suggested making your writing more readable. I mentioned a tool I use called Hemingway. It has both a Mac app and an online version. In this post I’m going to show how I use Hemingway. (In

Creating the "Right" Product Roadmap With Data

Speaker: Sunil Parekh, Head of Product Management, SimplyInsured

Data can be qualitative or quantitative, and comes from multiple sources: customer interviews, product usage & funnel analytics, company financial performance, and internal stakeholders. How do you use that data to create a product roadmap that is aligned with your organization’s business needs?

How To Talk To Your Executives About Agile

PM Hardcore

People have asked me “How can I get my execs to support an agile transformation? They don’t like that they can’t predict anything.”. Reframe the Agile conversation around value. Orient the conversation around value, not around methodologies. Picture credit below).

Agile 39

Mental Models for Product Managers – Part 1

PM Hardcore

The importance of mental models. Model of the brain – in yarn (CC 2.0 by Linden Tea ). There’s been an explosion – at least in my feed – of folks talking about the importance of having a lot of good mental models to help you make better decisions.

This New Template Helps You Write Better Product Requirements

PM Hardcore

“Communication” by Joan M. See below for image credit. Effective Communication is Challenging. Product managers tell me – and the people managing product managers tell me – that one of their biggest challenges is communicating with the development team.

Selection Criteria for Product Management Tools

PM Hardcore

Tools For What We Do. As a product manager, I’d like to find some tools that help me do my job. I deal with: Customers – finding their problems and listening to their product feedback. Markets – my segments, their problems, and how to reach them with my solution (and if they are big enough for me to make money). Positioning and value propositions – what my product does for my segment, and why it’s a better solution than the competition.

Connecting Analytics to Strategy - Keeping Your Corporate Objective In Sight

Speaker: Tom Evans, Senior Principal Consultant and Trainer, 280 Group

Data analytics has transformed the way many product managers approach product enhancements, creating strong demand for product managers with skills and expertise in defining and analyzing product metrics to make more valuable product decisions. But there is one essential element that is often left out of the conversation, and that is strategy. How does my product decisions support the overall strategy of the business, and am I tracking the right metrics based upon that strategy?

How To Say “No” To A Feature Request

PM Hardcore

No (picture credit at the bottom). Sometimes No Is The Right Answer. Can you talk to me about a time when you had to say no to a customer? Why did you have to say no? How did you handle it?

A Better Approach To Demoing Can Turn Sales Around

PM Hardcore

A Sales Demo Challenge. At one of my previous companies our new logo sales – that is, new customers – were tanking. The account reps were not hitting quota on new logos. The sales engineers felt this was due to a large degree to our “story” on agile.

Demo 22

Product Management And Fear – Three More Powerful Creative Blockbusters

PM Hardcore

Several years ago I had an article about three powerful tips for getting through a creative block. Although focused toward product managers, the tips were general purpose ways to increase your creative output. Morning pages. Crappy first drafts.

A Toolset For Getting Unstuck When Your Creativity Is Blocked

PM Hardcore

A Very Creative Block – Penrose Triangle by Wes Peck, CC 2.0 license. We product managers are inventing stuff most of the time. Whether it’s new features, or designs, or go to market materials, or just making decisions. And that means we are going to have creative blocks. A lot.

This New Template Helps You Write Better Product Requirements

PM Hardcore

“Communication” by Joan M. See below for image credit. Effective Communication is Challenging. Product managers tell me – and the people managing product managers tell me – that one of their biggest challenges is communicating with the development team.

A Better Approach To Demoing Can Turn Sales Around

PM Hardcore

A Sales Demo Challenge. At one of my previous companies our new logo sales – that is, new customers – were tanking. The account reps were not hitting quota on new logos. The sales engineers felt this was due to a large degree to our “story” on agile.

How Are You Going to Fix Onboarding?

PM Hardcore

You have a team of engineers and a three month runway – how are you going to fix onboarding? That’s a question I actually got in a product management job interview a while ago. My answer was, “that’s a really good question but I have no way of answering yet.”. Operating room or aspirin?

A New Focus On Product Management Opportunity

PM Hardcore

Looking through to the next stage. A long work in progress. This blog has been going for a long long time. It started as a site to share ideas and lessons I’ve learned in my career as a product manager for enterprise software products. Recently a bigger theme has started to emerge and coalesce.

This Framework Gives You Product Management Super Powers

PM Hardcore

Breakthrough! The Secret Product Management Framework. Finally writing down the Secret Product Management Framework was a revelation for me. It put all the activities I do as a product manager into perspective. We find and validate market problems for which customers will pay for a solution.

To 10x Your Profits Start With Retrospectives

PM Hardcore

20% is boring. As many of you know, there’s a technique called a “ retrospective ” in scrum, or you might call it a debrief. After each sprint the team spends a short amount of time reviewing what went well, what could be improved, and what they should stop doing.

How To Talk To Your Executives About Agile

PM Hardcore

People have asked me “How can I get my execs to support an agile transformation? They don’t like that they can’t predict anything.”. Reframe the Agile conversation around value. Orient the conversation around value, not around methodologies. Picture credit below).

People Don’t Buy Capabilities, They Buy Knowledge

PM Hardcore

This guy might have too much knowledge. Knowledge is power. Most of our tools and applications deliver capabilities, but users and buyers are always hoping that what they’re buying is knowledge. Knowledge of how to do the job.

The Secret Product Management Framework

PM Hardcore

One of the most challenging questions about product management has been – in my experience – “What is Product Management?”. In this post, I share a simple model or framework to answer this question.

2016 – More Hardcore Product Management Ahead

PM Hardcore

Calendar, by Joy (CC 2.0 license). The turning of the calendar itself has no real meaning, but it does give us a chance to reflect on what’s gone before, and what’s ahead. In my last post I reviewed the topics we covered in 2015.

2015 Year In Review – Hardcore Product Management

PM Hardcore

Looking back over 2015 on this blog, I see quite a lot of meaty content! The topics have been hardcore product management-related. I hope you’ve enjoyed reading it as much as I’ve enjoyed sharing it.

Interview With Hubert Palan, CEO of ProductBoard – Podcast Season 2, Episode 2

PM Hardcore

Here is the second episode of our new podcast season of All The Responsibility, None Of The Authority, crossposted from alltheresponsibility.com. I will be crossposting the new episodes from the new site to this feed as they are published (I’m a little behind now but will catch up!). Introducing Hubert Palan. Nils first met Hubert Palan in November 2014 at the Product Management Summit in San Francisco.

Interview With Hubert Palan, CEO of ProductBoard, Part 2 – Podcast Season 2, Episode 2

PM Hardcore

This second part of our interview with Hubert Palan is the third episode of our new podcast season of All The Responsibility, None Of The Authority, crossposted from alltheresponsibility.com. I will be crossposting the new episodes from the new site to this feed as they are published (I’m a little behind now but will catch up!). This is part two of our interview with Hubert Palan, found and CEO of ProductBoard, and long time product management leader and executive.

The Ladder of Evidence: Get More Value From Your Customer Interviews and Product Experiments

Product Talk

One of the best signs of an effective product team is a regular cadence of customer interviews and product experiments. But it’s not enough to simply check the box on these activities; we need to make sure that we do them effectively.

10 Tips for Creating an Agile Product Roadmap

Roman Pichler

1 Focus on Goals and Benefits.