Learn: Products (I)


Find answers to...

  • What's difference between project and product management?
  • What is product-market fit?
  • How do you find product-market fit?
  • How do you identify and prioritize product features?
  • What metrics do you use to measure product success?
  • What is a north star metric for a product?
  • What is a pivot?
  • How do you define and communicate the product vision?
  • What are the typical funding rounds for startups and companies trying to raise funds?
  • What is the difference between a product manager vs a project manager?
  • What is the difference between a feature team vs a product team?
  • Who are product leaders? What do they do and what is product leadership?


  • Spot project management and product management
  • Know what goes into a good product
  • Spot solutions in search of a problem
  • Feel it in your soul when a "product" just ain't it
  • Think user-first, Min/PS/DS last
  • Be aware of how startups and industry get funding, and what metrics/trajectories they prioritize
  • We don't often need product managers, but know when you need one, and know when you don't have one.
  • Be mindful of the transformation and product management theatre

My Observations

Many products/systems developed by Govt don't solve real & meaningful problems, are slow & laggy, huge wastes of money
Product-market fit simply isn't thought about, most certainly not efficiency and working at scale (see: $1 vending machine that dispenses $100 doesn't have product-market fit)
Tech product owners are often appointed to the role without relevant skills or experience, and end up roleplaying their idea of what the job requires
People who manage products don't talk to users
Prescriptive rules in public service restrain engineering teams's ability to innovate, deliver fast
Project KPIs are usually an afterthought - KPIs are neither meaningful, ambitious, or a good indication of the product's value (e.g. 70% of users rate 4/5)
People always have want to develop something new, without thinking of the long tail that's involved with maintaining something you developed
No one is incentivized to terminate their projects/products even if poorly performing, because it means they lose MMF, lose funding, lose appraisal work achievements.

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