People

Interpersonal relationships with the talent human beings doing the actual work.

The Ruin Of Feeling Powerless

I woke up one August morning to find a letter waiting on my dining room table. The only words were "I love you. I believe."

It was from my girlfriend. It had been a long few months of tireless work for the both of us, and we often found ourselves wondering if things would ever get better. It seemed like a hopeful low point in our lives as we were both consumed by timelines and obligations.

Little did we know that August was just the beginning of a 6 month stretch that would slowly take its toll on our lives.

Burning Out

Everything is Fine

A while back Kieran Tie struck a chord with me in an article he wrote about the subject.

Burning out is more common than we think; it's a topic that doesn't fair well in the "everything is fine" blueprint for western civilization. Burnout can

How To Interview Product Managers

From the perspective of a Product Manager, it's amazing how different PM interviews can be between organizations.

While there are a fair share of rigorous hiring processes, what catches my surprise is how many startups simply do too little to vet a PM. Those who are proud of their work would much prefer a way to display this than an easy offer.

Here's my 2 cents:

Let Them Speak

Most of the intangibles that come with being a PM are often revealed when a candidate speaks to their own accomplishments. When given the steering wheel, which aspects of their products do they speak to?

Having a PM describe their own successes will reveal what they perceive goes into making a successful product:

  • Speaking to the challenges that were presented and the features they proposed to fix them are indicative of strategic thinkers.

  • Detailing the struggles of a team or organization

The Community of Product Management

Lately I've found myself pursuing something I've previously steered clear of: becoming engaged in the Product Community. Unfortunately, I'm quickly remembering why I've avoided it.

As a unit, it seems like the audible voices of product management rarely have much to say. Reddits, groups, and chat channels seem to be dominated by professionals hung up on the elementary details of product management. It's unclear if these samples accurate representation of product managers as whole, but it seems as though PMs who have already mastered the fundamental skills behind product have few places to turn for improvement.

These are some of the qualms I find myself hung up on:

Overused or Misused Lingo

Scrum

It's easy to find images just like the one above; a quick google search for images representative of product management typically depict an individual dictating to a room, whether it be explaining simple topics to a massive lecture,

9 Things We Learn In School

Getting an education takes a lot of effort and arguably the most valuable years of one's life.

Seeing as how we all invest massive amounts of time and money into pursuing degrees, it's probably a good idea to gauge the ROI. After 22 years and a Bachelor's degree, this is what I got...

1. Life is Linear

Life only gets better, at a fixed rate over time. As long as we stay the course we will slowly accrue more diplomas, higher salaries, and better lives. Always forwards, never backwards.

2. Concepts Over Substance

It is more important to understand underlying concepts than it is to use them in practice. Constructing a trebuchet via the application of mathematics is not as important as completing exercises utilizing the Pythagorean theorem. "Work" is the completion of assignments, not the pursuit of a final product.

3. More Words Are Better

As long

What Is A Product Manager?

There we are, mingling at a party... we haven't met yet, but that is all about to change. As you bite into a freshly prepared hors d'oeuvre, a mutual friend insists that we must meet. Suddenly we lock eyes.

As we engage in conversation, there is a certain vagueness to my words. Despite how attentive you may be, you cannot seem to place my life's story. A question burns within you...

What did you say it is you do, again?

As I explain, only more questions arise. A 'product manager?' How does one manage a product? What exactly constitutes a digital agency? Why do I not refer to such as an ad agency? Surely they must be one in the same.

So you build websites?

Things continue to become complicated. How does one create 'digital products' without designing or developing? What could I mean by 'strategy' anyway?

So are