My approach is simple and revolves around 4 key themes:
- Launch and learn quickly
- Keep the end consumer in mind
- Minimize the number of unknowns
- Create a feedback loop of learning and best practices
As I go into new projects I always advise my team that "we don't know what we don't know". So I challenge everyone to ask questions, uncover insights, and learn quickly.
Start with the future in mind
I take a software development architecture approach to everything I do, whether it is building a product, a marketing campaign, a value proposition or product positioning... build a scalable framework/platform that can stand the test of time and be added to.
Starting with the end in might also means starting by building a product that is inherently marketable and puts the consumer first. Don't build first, and later think about marketing and your consumer... think about these things before development begins.
Prototype and fail fast
As software or ideas are developed I encourage teams to demonstrate functionality along the way. This ensures that there are no surprises in the final product whether it is how true the software is to the initial requirements or an idea to the shared vision.
Budget for the unknown
Nothing is worse than over scoped projects and missed deadlines. Failure burns people out. Avoid failure by leaving enough room and time for the unexpected.
Build loyalty into the product
Loyalty is a relationship that starts with setting expectations and delivering. Everyday, positive experiences with the product translate into loyalty and it starts with the little things: removing the friction of getting things done; a design language that promotes familiarity; most of all understanding your users and giving then what they want, when they want it.
Monitor, hypothesize, test
When a product is in market you now have the opportunity to start collecting data about how users are using the product and what they like and dislike. This information while interesting is most useful when paired with a hypothesis that can give you insights. Once a hypothesis is formed you can test to get better understanding.
For more information download my presentation Product Management - 20 Years in 20 Minutes