10 articles that changed product management in 2019

In politics and in IT, a week is an era. We are bombarded with information 24/7. The industry is moving at a stage that it is impossible to follow everything — in fact, it is difficult to follow the most important developments alone.

Newsletters such as The Download (MIT Technology Review), the UX Collective Newsletter, Stefan Wolper’s Food for Agile thought, or Tim Herbig’s Product Thoughts are but a handful of useful resources to keep up-to-date on important developments. Then, there’s the daily digests from Medium and who knows how many other platforms coming through your mailbox!

In 2019 alone, I received over 10,000 emails on my personal email. Many of them include my product management subscriptions. Reading through all of that takes a lot of time — wouldn’t it be easier if you can just read the best of the best?

Here’s a list of the 10 highest quality articles I read in 2019

Founder and CEO of Australia’s fastest growing product development firm, Scott Middleton gives you a 5-step recipe for grasping a product. On-topic and concise, this 6 minute read deserves your attention.

Being “data-driven” has really become one of those catch phrases that can lead to ignorance, or fear of asking what data-driven truly means because apparently it is so obvious. Janet Brunckhorst is a California PM who is not shy to point out the possible pitfalls here: making irrelevant decisions, asking the wrong questions, and falling victim to confirmation bias.

People remember stories and examples, hence why articles that feature them are often the best and most memorable.

Language matters. Especially for product managers who, naturally, lack the direct authority to direct people around like traditional HR used to.

John Cutler’s piece can help you take a step back and practice reflection, and hopefully, make you a better team player in the process.

What are the best practices for SaaS web design? The articles gives you the answer, to the point. Oh, and did I mention the eye-catching infographics? :)

Once again, John Cutler shows us he can tell a good story. If you want to improve your process by learning how to reference feature requests as ‘bets’ and put together the recap presentation before you begin working (yes, for real), then this one is definitely a must-read.

Maarten Dalmijn is a PM who knows a lot about Scrum, and writes a lot about it. Scrum is yet again something everyone is hyped about, and everyone in IT seems to want to do. But a lot of us face challenges applying the framework — and that’s OK, we’re life-long learners after all. In this situation, however, it is quite likely you can relate to at least a handful of the mistakes Maarten talks about.

In a nutshell, Tarun Kohli teaches you how to go from this:

“I want to build a GPS enabled car service where users can call a car whenever they want through a mobile app”

to this:

“One winter night in Paris, my friend and I were returning from a conference and we were unable to get a cab. This gave us an idea about building something for people where they can call a cab via a mobile app”

Can you name the company already?

Before we move to the top three, breaking into product management is a challenging task that most people I know of (myself included) have faced, or are faced with.

For this reason, here is a 🎉 BONUS ARTICLE 🎉 to that end.

Starting a new job is challenging, and may even be overwhelming — getting to know new people, a new organisational culture, likely having a whole new set of responsibilities than you did before. Wouldn’t it be great if you had a checklist of things to be aware of in your first month at that dream new job?

This practical guide by marketer and product enthusiast Yaroslav Lehenchuk covers just about all the key elements a PM absolutely must know about market and market fit. And it does so in as few as 12 minutes too.

OK, this is the third time I’m including an article from the same author in a list of 10, but this guy writes a lot, A LOT, about product management & managers. Here’s just a selection of what you should know about PMs:

  1. Their days are frenetic
  2. They can be torn about their role
  3. They can’t make most decisions unilaterally
  4. (and 12 more to go!)

Thank you for getting all the way down here! I appreciate and value your time.

As mentioned earlier, information is all around us, all the time. This list is by no means an exhaustive repository of all the great content that has been published over the course of this year. If you want to find out more great articles, hit this link to The Knowledgebasea personally curated list of over 100 of the best software articles I have come across.

Let me know what you think of this list in the comments below.

Till next time. 😉

PS: You can also read my other articles on my personal blog @ www.ivovalchev.com/blog/

product owner @TwoKings web design agency | https://www.linkedin.com/in/valchevivo/