1️⃣ How To Maximize Your Team’s Impact
May 2021 • 4 min read • #execution #empowerment
Asking your designer to “mock the feature X” is like asking “Gordon Ramsey to follow your grilled sandwich recipe”… not a good idea. This article gives clear examples & a framework from Brandon Chu to really empower your team:
1/ Consider the relative skillset of a team member (designer, data, eng) & your relative skillset
2/ Depending on the answers the relationship will fall in 3 possible buckets: support, partner, lead. …

1️⃣ Flow Efficiency: Powering the Current of Your Work
Mar 2019 • 5 min read • #execution
I speak regularly about why I don’t like to do “estimates” of the work we do as a team. There are 2 main reasons:
1/ Estimates are usually made up (even with an experienced team), and takes too much time to evaluate (and it’s never fun for anyone). But in my opinion, there are better alternatives. To control the output, the “flow efficiency”-indicator is a solution. Lead & cycle times are another.
2/ To build a commitment, I prefer to work backwards like an…

1️⃣ Product Management — play it like Walt Disney
Apr 2021 • 8 min read • #execution #inspiration
I love articles like this that draws inspiration from other fields. On a similar note, I highly encourage you to read the book Creativity Inc on the story of Pixar (a book that impacted me a lot). You’ll discover:
- There weren’t administration buildings in Disneyland. Walt wanted the employees to operate the park by being with the clients & observing them in order to improve the experience as much as possible
- Why they work so much on creating an emotional bond with their…

1️⃣ Adding is favoured over subtracting in problem solving
Apr 2021 • 5 min read • #strategy #manageyourself
A bias worth taking into account when you design a system: we tend to think by “addition” (features, settings, offering) rather than subtraction. Not convinced? Think of a new product one-upping a competitor by adding one more feature or even the law (in France we went from 214k to 331k legal rules between 2002 and 2021). When designing, always start with the questions: can we unship things? can we simplify?

2️⃣ Upsides to Unshipping: The Art of Removing Features and Products
May 2021…

1️⃣ Empowered product teams and metered funding
Apr 2021 • 9 min read • #strategy #execution #mustread
I often talk about Product Managers as Investors (I developed this idea in this French video). The metaphor goes this way: your fund (= your squad’s time), your bets (= the initiatives you’ll work on), your investments (= the time you are okay to invest in each idea to have an impact). This article refines some ideas:
1/ Big returns don’t require big bets. Instead, invest as little time as possible. As the VP Eng @Shopify puts it: “Optimizing for speed leads to faster learning…

1️⃣ OUTCOME BASED ROADMAPS
Sept 2019 • 10 min read • #strategy #execution #mustread
This is a very good piece connecting the content shared in the last few weeks around product strategy. It starts with the company’s objectives, down to the “outcome” roadmap, giving specific advice & prompts to start. Bonus: a good piece on the differences between a feature & an outcome roadmap by Gibson Biddle & a recommended deep dive in how Malt & Jobteaser do it by Le Ticket (FR)

2️⃣ Pre-mortems: How a Stripe Product Manager prevents problems before launch
Apr 2021 • 5 min read •…

1️⃣ The Product Strategy Stack
Mar 2021 • 14 min read • #strategy #mustread
Continuing our series on product strategy, here comes an important concept: the product strategy is the connecting tissue between the company objectives (defined by its mission & strategy) and the product delivery artefacts (defined by the roadmap & its goals). Meaning:
1/ It’s impossible to create a relevant product strategy if the company’s leadership is not aligned and didn’t provide a clear company strategy
2/ Actually, a poor stack makes prioritizing difficult, create tensions between teams, UX leans towards “messiness”, teams over-optimize some parts, and more..
3/ On the…

1️⃣ Product Strategy Template: Focus Your Efforts With These 3 Steps
Mar 2021 • 6 min read • #strategy
Last week I shared the best intro video I know on product strategy… but how to actually form a strategy in the first place? On top of Gibson Biddle’s exercices, this sheet contains many useful prompts:
1/ Delight & unity: what promises is your product making to customers (= job to be done)?
2/ Growth & scale: what should you do to sustainably keep these promises and scale (= model)? …

1️⃣ Intro to Product Strategy w/ Gibson Biddle (ex VP Product Netflix)
Apr 2020 • 48 min watch • #strategy
A lot of wisdom on Product Strategy in this webinar, featuring interactions with the audience that actually help you understand the subject. Gibson Biddle shares:
1/ His frameworks (GLEe, DHM, GEM, SMT). You can find more on medium
2/ Demonstrate his points through two cases: Should Netflix launch a “party” feature? Should Netflix launch a custom playback speed at the risk of altering the original art? The answers are in this must watch video

2️⃣ The Product Manager’s Flowchart
Mar 2021…

Olivier Courtois

10y+ in Product, now freelance / coach / advisor • Newsletter at productver.se • ex- VP-Product comet & Product Director ManoMano

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