Product Teams

Manage Your New Year’s Resolutions Like a PM

Published Dec 23, 2015

Every Tom, Dick and Harry has posted New Year’s resolutions this week. It’s a seasonal bandwagon and fairly commonplace. However, this is one bandwagon we decided to jump on because . . . well, because product managers are terribly fond of making lists and checking things off. (The portly, whiskered gentleman in the red suit must be the ultimate product manager.) Product Managers are also collectively fond of optimistic goals and visions of sugarplums, but the best of them have some sense of reality. They’re their own worst enemy wrapped in an oxymoron. So, when we asked our hearty product people what was on their list for self-betterment this year, they responded with reams of enhancements. Not surprising, they wrote them on post-it notes, and in Sharpie. (If you write resolutions in permanent ink, it must be easier to keep them, yes?) Here’s a select few. Happy New Year from Pendo!

As a product manager I resolve to …

  1. Drink less coffee. Or at least pretend like I’m drinking less coffee.
  2. Get on the phone and call a customer at least once a day.
  3. Stop talking to my significant other in user stories (“As your boyfriend I can make you breakfast in bed so that you can let me go cycling for four hours instead of cleaning the garage”).
  4. Stop triple-booking meetings.
  5. Get my ‘Ship It’ tattoo removed and replaced with “Outcomes over Features.”
  6. Take advantage of frequent flier programs, and learn the fine art of the redeye.
  7. Stop starting and start finishing.
  8. Spend more time watching real users, in their real environment, with real data, getting their real job done.
  9. Walk a mile (or at least an hour) in an engineer’s shoes. Try mob-programming.
  10. Leave time to think strategically. Grapple with the big picture. Ask “why and who” more than “when and how.”

Send us your product manager resolutions and follow us @pendoio