I gave you a cookie to help me learn how people use my website. By browsing you consent to this. Find out more.

Good reads #6: Realisations.


This week we have a small list of longer reads. If I was to try to highlight a theme for them, I would probably say “realisations”. These are all hard won lessons learned from Product people and business leaders on the topics of product fit, organisational structure, engagement, and focus. Grab your favourite drink, sit in a cosy chair, and enjoy an hour of good reads.


Death or glory — or why we killed our money-making product 27 days after launch by Paul Smith.
What is it that they say? No product survives first contact with a customer? This is the story of how a couple of faulty assumptions lead to this particular product, six months in the making, to close and pivot in less than a month of being made available to paying customers.

The Top 10 Signs It’s Time To Change Your Organizational Structure by Lex Sisney.
There’s a lot of truth in this post. How often do you think about how your organisational structure is impacting your ability to problem solve, build, ship, and maintain stuff?

Short-range pressure (driving leads for sales to reach ever-higher quotas) will always overpower long-range development needs (new innovations).

A good rule of thumb is that if you want something to change or improve in your company, you’ll need a function or role accountable for it. This includes the accountability for cross-functional coordination.

Mastering Engagement—Product Analytics Playbook by Amplitude.
Engagement. It’s one of those conversations that fills me with fear, because we all think we don’t have enough of it, we all have different ideas of why that may be, and in the end it turns into something of a mystic art. Obviously, that’s hyperbole, but you get the picture.

I’m not normally a fan of playbooks. I find that being too prescriptive takes the magic out of building products and experiences, but on this occasion I’ll set aside my prejudices. They should have called it a primer instead of a playbook, because, to me, that’s what it is. It’s a great way to build a progressive understanding of modern engagement analytics and techniques.

Heads up: you need to provide an email address to read this one.


Podcast: How to get Your Team to do Their Best Work with John Cutler by The Product Experience.

All product managers should set aside [time] every day to do the deeper work… product managers are so reactive, they’re always struggling to keep up – yet if you don’t do the deeper work… you’re always going to be on the back foot. Not doing the busy work – but actually revisiting assumptions.


This tweet by Brian Norgard.
Back to basics. How many out of three did you get? ;)