Articles

  • Delivery date is another source of conflict between business and tech

    In the same that discovery seems to be a source of conflict between business people and product development teams, as I explained in the article Why business people hate discovery, the term delivery date also seems to generate some conflicts. … Continue reading


  • What is and how to create the product vision and strategy?

    At some point during the growth phase of your product, it may be helpful to create its vision and strategy. These tools will greatly help you in the decisions about what the future of your product will be. For this … Continue reading


  • More on NPS

    My latest article on NPS sparkled some interesting conversations on this metric that I believe are worth sharing: NPS has or has not the % sign? From a strictly mathematical point of view, we should use the percentage sign because … Continue reading


  • Growth: the loyalty metric

    The financial outcome must always be used as one of the metrics that indicate that the company is being successful and that it is reaching its goal. However, it must not be considered in isolation, because there is good revenue … Continue reading


  • Growth: financial metrics

    When I talked about the importance of being a data geek in the previous chapter, I explained the conversion funnel, which is formed by a set of data that we can consider short-termed, because within a few days (or even … Continue reading


  • Growth: Engagement and churn

    Once you get to bring in users (free or paid) to use your product, your next concern is related to the engagement from these users, that is, are they using the product? Are they solving the problem that the product … Continue reading


  • Another example of an MVD – Minimum Viable Discovery

    Lopes is the biggest real estate company in Brazil, where I’m leading the digital transformation efforts. A new hire who came from an e-commerce site mentioned that app push notifications generated more leads and had greater conversion rates than SMS and … Continue reading


  • Why business people hate discovery

    There are basically two reasons, one of them has to do with mindset and the other one has to do with the discovery process. The one that has to do with mindset is clear when we hear phrases like “Why … Continue reading


  • Growth: be a “data geek”

    Take a close look at the data that your product generates! Aside from talking to your users and hearing their feedback, a mandatory way of knowing your product and how your users interact with it is through data. To take … Continue reading


  • Growth: how to prioritize the roadmap?

    This is a frequent question from every product manager. Whether is a new product that’s is being created now, or a fully operating product full of suggestions from clients and users, how to prioritize, that is, how to decide what … Continue reading


  • Uncertainty and digital transformation

    One aspect of digital transformations that seems to be common-sense among people who are in or who help companies go through this process is that what is most difficult is not the digital and technology changes, but the cultural and … Continue reading


  • Cone of Uncertainty is another reason why we need to deliver early and often

    I already wrote about 3 reasons why it is important to deliver your product early and often to your users. Now I want to give you a 4th reason, based on the Cone of Uncertainty concept from the project management … Continue reading


  • What’s the difference between product and project?

    I already wrote about the difference between product management and project management but I believe there’s room to go a bit deeper on the differences between product and project. So, a quick remembering of the definitions of product and project: … Continue reading


  • Growth: listening to your users’ feedback

    You discovered a problem of a group of people, and deeply understood this problem and its context. You discovered what motivates people to solve it, and analyzed the opportunity in detail in order to evaluate if it is worth building … Continue reading


  • Innovation: next steps

    Once you discovered a problem of a group of people, got to the bottom of it, its context, and the motivations that people have to solve this problem, you analyze the opportunity in detail. You evaluate if it is worth … Continue reading


  • The 2 sides of Product Discovery

    By the end of 2021, I had the opportunity to re-record the classes I gave at Cursos PM3 on the fundamentals of product management. It was a good opportunity to review and expand the content based on the new experience … Continue reading


  • Innovation: How to get a return on the investment from building a digital product?

    One of the most important questions of the opportunity assessment questionnaire we saw in the previous chapter is the question: “How are we going to measure success and make money from this product?”. It deals with two subjects: metrics and … Continue reading


  • Innovation: a lot of opportunities

    It is likely that, after focusing on the problem and understanding the job to be done, as described on the previous chapter, you will find not only one but a few opportunities to develop a new product or new features … Continue reading


  • Innovation: the job to be done

    Professor Clayton Christensen teaches at Harvard and wrote several books — among them The Innovator’s Dilemma: the revolutionary book that will change the way you do business[^InnovatorDilemma], a must-read for all those who work in technology –, and he developed … Continue reading


  • Innovation: Focus on the problem

    The first step to creating a new software product is to understand the problem. It is very tempting, as you begin to understand the problem, to go on and seek solutions. Human nature is to solve problems. Every software developer … Continue reading


  • Leading and lagging indicators

    During a mentoring session about a data concept that I think is very important, I noticed that I hadn’t written about that concept yet, so here it is. Anyone who knows me knows the importance I give to metrics. They … Continue reading


  • What is innovation?

    Of all stages of the lifecycle of a software product, innovation is the one that uses to present the greatest amount of questions. But what is innovation? How to find a problem to be solved? How to find out if … Continue reading


  • Let’s remove the product from the center?

    I have been working with digital products for over 30 years. I graduated in computer engineering at ITA in the early 1990s and since then I have worked for companies whose core business is technology. Starting with Dialdata, my internet … Continue reading


  • Lifecycle of a digital product

    I’ve talked a little about what is digital product management, the main characteristics of a product manager, and about some leadership and organizational culture tips for helping managers to lead without being “the boss”. Now, let’s talk about the lifecycle … Continue reading


  • 2 leadership tips for product managers

    Product managers have the hard task of leading the product’s evolution without being anyone’s “boss”. In other words, they must convince everyone who works with their product that the path they defined for the product is the most adequate. In several … Continue reading


  • 7 essential characteristics of a product manager

    What does a person need to have in order to be a good product manager? There are some important characteristics and I’ll talk about them here. But the most important of all is, certainly, the one that illustrates this article, empathy. … Continue reading


  • Product manager or product owner?

    Product manager or product owner? Which term should we use? Are they different roles? Are they complementary? Is there overlapping? Is it better to have two distinct individuals, one for each role? Or is it better to combine two roles … Continue reading


  • What is digital product management?

    We already have the definition of digital products, we saw many examples and many ways of categorizing these products. We also understood the difference between a product and a platform. Now we are going to define the role of digital … Continue reading


  • What is a digital product?

    Even before defining digital product management, let’s start from the beginning, that is, defining what is software and what is a digital product. Later, I’ll talk about what is digital product management and what are the main characteristics of being … Continue reading


  • About the Product Management book

    We are at that point in which there is software in places where a few years ago, we never imagined that there would be need and usefulness in having software: TVs, refrigerators, stoves, cars, watches, glasses, clothing, locks, tables, chairs, … Continue reading


  • Conclusion

    After this summary, we reach the end of the book. I have tried to document here what I have learned over the course of my career in the hope of helping others to learn more about leading digital product development. … Continue reading


  • Summing up

    In this chapter, I have transcribed the Summing up sections of all chapters in order to create a quick reference guide on all topics discussed in this book. Concepts I started the book by establishing some definitions, reviewing basic concepts … Continue reading


  • Ceremonies

    In this chapter, I’m going to talk about the ceremonies I usually use with the teams I lead. These ceremonies with different stakeholders aim at planning, aligning and managing expectations. I emphasize that this list is not definitive, that is, … Continue reading


  • Feedback and performance evaluation

    One of the main tools for the development of the people on your team is feedback. This word is an English term that originally means a process in which the actions of a given system are inserted back into the … Continue reading


  • Hire the right people

    As I mentioned in the chapter “People: priority # 1, always” we spend money and energy to attract, hire and retain the best people. Having people as the number one priority is the key to achieving any other goal. And … Continue reading


  • Relationships

    As I commented in the chapter Roles, responsibilities and seniority, expectations management is something that occupies between 50 to 80% of the time of a head of product. Your daily routine revolves around your relationships and interactions with many people … Continue reading


  • Metrics

    By now you should have realized how much I like metrics. In my first book, Startup Guide: how startups and established companies can create profitable digital products, I dedicated 6 entire chapters in addition to talking about metrics in the … Continue reading


  • Measuring and managing quality

    In 2015, we decided to extinguish the Quality Assurance (QA) function of our Locaweb product development team. We had 12 QAs, some with a developer profile and others with a SysAdmin profile. In proposing the extinction of the QA role, … Continue reading


  • Measuring and managing productivity

    How can we deliver faster? How can we deliver more with the same team? Why do we have the impression that the team is slow? When the team was smaller, it seemed that it could deliver more. These are very … Continue reading


  • Vision, strategy, objectives, and team structure

    This is the beginning of Part III of the book, about Tools, I’ll talk about the tools I’ve been using in my almost 30 years of product development leadership career and passing them to other leaders so they can use … Continue reading


  • Ecosystem mindset

    This value I learned at Gympass. It was one of the company’s corporate values ​​and, in my opinion, every platform must incorporate this value in its culture. I often came across CEOs and heads of platform products who claimed that … Continue reading


  • Result delivery

    Result delivery In the previous chapter, we saw the difference between a team that solves problems and a team that implements solutions. While a problem-solving team needs to have a deep understanding of each problem it will solve, the people … Continue reading


  • New book: Digital products leadership

    I used the year-end low workload to finish translating my book “Digital products leadership: The science and art of managing product teams” into English. Enjoy! \o/ Here’s a special launch discount coupon: https://leanpub.com/leadingproductdevelopment/c/launch And happy 2021, full of amazing results … Continue reading


  • Focus on the problem

    It is human nature to solve problems. Whenever we hear about problems, we go into solution mode almost immediately: we start looking for solutions to the problem. However, if we are able to get a better understanding of the context … Continue reading


  • Release early and often

    In the previous chapters we saw my personal leadership principles: People: priority # 1, always Leading is like being a doctor Leading under pressure Mentoring is a two-way street How and when to delegate We also saw what corporate culture … Continue reading


  • Diversity, the basis of the best products

    I have seen demonstrations of diversity with increasing frequency. I’m not much into watching TV, but one day in 2017 I ended up watching a little bit of TV Globo, the biggest Brazilian TV network. I watched the end of … Continue reading


  • Culture and values

    After talking about my leadership principles, I will talk about another fundamental theme for a head of product, organizational culture and values. There are 5 values ​​that I consider critical for the success of the product: Don’t waste time looking … Continue reading


  • How and when to delegate

    Delegating is the act of entrusting someone with a task and/or responsibility, usually with less seniority than the person who is delegating. Leadership is an ongoing act of delegating tasks and responsibilities. It seems like a straightforward activity, but it … Continue reading


  • Mentoring

    Mentoring is one of the most important responsibilities of a head of product: helping your team to evolve. As I said earlier, between 10% to 40% of the head of product’s time should be focused on helping people on your … Continue reading


  • Leading under pressure

    There is no work environment without pressure. I don’t know of any workplace where people say that goals are easy, that there is no risk in achieving the goals, or that the project will be delivered on time with 100% … Continue reading


  • Leading is like being a doctor

    In February 2011 I underwent cervical spine disc replacement surgery. The doctor performed the surgery on February 25th. However, the healing process took months. According to the doctor, it could take a year for all the symptoms that motivated the … Continue reading


  • People: priority #1, always

    Every company has its own culture and, within each company, every department also has its own culture. In addition, each person also has their principles and values ​​that guide their steps through life. In this part of the book, part … Continue reading


  • Leadership anti-patterns

    An anti-pattern is a common but ineffective and counterproductive response to a problem. This term was coined by Andrew Koenig in 1995, inspired by the 1994 book Design Patterns: Elements of Reusable Object-Oriented Software by Gamma Erich, Helm Richard, Johnson … Continue reading


  • Developing the team and managing expectations

    As I commented in the chapter Roles, responsibilities and seniority, in addition to defining and implementing the product vision and strategy, it is the responsibility of the head of product to develop his team and manage expectations. In the third … Continue reading


  • Team structure

    The product development team is the one who will execute the strategy and achieve the objectives to achieve the product vision. Therefore, an essential part of your strategy definition is to design and implement your team structure. In order to … Continue reading


  • Strategy and objectives

    What needs to be done to get your product closer to the product vision? This is your strategy and product objectives. We are then talking about defining what to do, how to do it, in what order to do it, … Continue reading


  • Product vision

    Despite being only 10% of a product leader’s time, defining the product vision is the most important responsibility. Without a clear product vision, it is very difficult to work on any other product topic. What are the priorities? What product … Continue reading


  • Product management career

    In my book Product Management: How to increase the chances of success of your software I comment on career progression starting with Business Analyst (BA) as the beginning of a career, with the responsibility of specifying what the product development … Continue reading


  • Roles, responsibilities, and seniority

    In the previous chapter we just reviewed some basic concepts of digital products. Now let’s understand what a head of product is, what its roles and responsibilities are. As I mentioned in the introduction to the book, the role of … Continue reading


  • What are digital products and product management?

    As I mentioned in my article about The role of the Product VP/Head, I’m writing an entire book about the many different aspects and skills needed to be head of product. The book will be divided into 3 mains sections, … Continue reading


  • Where does product management sit in a company?

    After reading the article “product marketing and product management“, about the differences between product management and product marketing management, it may seem that the best place to put product management in a company is in the marketing department. However, in … Continue reading


  • What type of company needs a product manager?

    When we think about the product management function, we always imagine it being exercised in a company whose core business is software offered via the internet, also known as Software as a Service, or SaaS. However, in my opinion, this … Continue reading


  • Organizing for focus and diversification

    When a company opts for diversification, team organization tends to be simpler. For each product, there will be a single team of engineers (2-8 people, which can be back-end or front-end or full-stack, depending on your product needs), plus a … Continue reading


  • QA or no QA? That’s NOT the right question…

    Back in 2016, I wrote an article about the reasons that motivated us at Locaweb to extinguish the QA function in our product development team. At Locaweb we had 12 QAs, some with a developer profile and others with a … Continue reading


  • Focus or diversification?

    Okay, I convinced you that those who do not diversify can get into a difficult situation, because a single product company ends up dying sooner or later. I also explained strategies for portfolio diversification and showed how to manage a … Continue reading


  • Stakeholder relationships

    A product manager’s life is all about relationships. Any product manager has to interact with many people inside and outside her organization that have an interest in the product she manages. In the corporate jargon, these people are called stakeholders: … Continue reading


  • Diversifying – and digitalizing – a product portfolio, a case study

    During the COVID-19 we did a diversification – and digitalization – of our product portfolio in record time. We went from one offline product, access to gyms and studios, to 4 products, 3 of them fully digital, in less than … Continue reading


  • Guia da Startup agora é Gyaco / Guia da Startup now is Gyaco

    Português Guia da Startup foi um blog que criei em 2012 quando eu estava escrevendo o meu primeiro livro. Eu trouxe todo o conteúdo para esse novo site, onde centralizarei todo o meu conteúdo. Se você quer ser notificado de … Continue reading


  • The top-down trap

    In my last article, I’ve discussed the differences between problem solver teams and solution implementer teams, why these teams yield better results, and how to build them. Top-down solutions When discussing these types of teams, I normally hear things like … Continue reading


  • Problem solver vs solution implementer teams

    Marty Cagan, a well-known reference in the digital product community, wrote some time ago an interesting article about Product vs Feature Teams where he explains the difference between three types of product teams, Delivery Teams, Feature Teams, and Product Teams. He wrote … Continue reading


  • Customers do know what they want!

    I’m currently reviewing the translation of my first book, called “Startup Guide: How startups and established companies can create profitable digital products” and I came across this interesting chapter which discusses the common belief that customers don’t know what they … Continue reading


  • How to manage a product portfolio?

    In my previous two articles, I explained why a company should worry about having more than one product and how a software product company can diversify its portfolio. In this article, I will talk about managing a product portfolio. When you have two … Continue reading


  • How to diversify your product portfolio?

    In my previous article, I talked about why companies should diversify their product portfolio. Now, I will show you how to do this. New Markets The first option is the search for new markets. When we think about it, we remember … Continue reading


  • Are you thinking about your new product? No? So you are already late…

    Did you know that Google has 177 active products in addition to 79 discontinued products? These are the statistics from Google just before it announced Alphabet in August 2015. And how many offices has Google spread around the world? I … Continue reading


  • Defining roles with RASCI

    In the series of articles, I talked about the relationship between the product manager and engineering, UX, product marketing, project management, and all other areas of the company.  To close this series of articles about the relationship between product management and the other areas of the … Continue reading


  • What about the other areas?

    In previous articles, I talked about the relationship between the product manager and engineering, UX, product marketing and project management. The question that remains is: what about the other areas of the company? How is the product manager’s relationship with operations, service, legal, sales, administrative … Continue reading


  • Product management in a crisis

    I was writing a series of articles about the relationship between product management and the other areas of the company. I already wrote about: UX and product management Engineering and product management Product marketing and product management Project management and … Continue reading


  • What is the difference between project management and product management?

    In this series of articles where I write about the relationship between product management and the other areas of the company, I wrote about: UX and product management Engineering and product management Product marketing and product management Now I want … Continue reading


  • Product marketing and product management

    In this series of articles where I write about the relationship between product management and the other areas of the company, I wrote about: UX and product management Engineering and product management Now I want to write about the relationship … Continue reading


  • UX and product management

    I spoke previously about the relationship between Engineering and Product Management. The next area I want to comment on is the UX area which, along with product engineering and product management, forms the core product development team. What is UX? Here’s a … Continue reading


  • 2 hacks to foster your digital product culture

    I’ve been leading product development at Gympass for 1,5 years now. Prior to Gympass I always worked in companies where technology was the main product of the company. In this type of company, digital product culture is part of the … Continue reading


  • Projects vs problems

    The new year is time for retrospective and planning. What is normally done every quarter by most product development teams is done more intensely during the turn of the year, together with other areas of the company, and for the … Continue reading


  • We can’t stand it, we need to rewrite everything…

    This article was originally published in Portuguese in June 2017. I have heard this phrase several times throughout my career. Software developers know that invariably comes a moment when this kind of discussion comes up, which usually has phrases like: “it’s getting … Continue reading


  • The relationship between product engineering and product management

    How should the product manager relate to different areas of the company? Engineering, UX, product marketing, project management, operations, sales, legal, finance, customer service, human resources, and general management. Recalling what I said in the article Main characteristics of a product … Continue reading


  • What is the difference between startup and product management?

    Since 2011, there has been a lot of discussion about startups, with many books, lectures, discussion groups, events focused on the subject, which has a lot to do with digital product development and management. It has so much to do … Continue reading


  • End-of-life

    Your software product may have arrived here coming from three different paths: 1. Your product growth has slowed, and you have done all the analysis and testing described in the previous article to make sure that it has indeed reached the stage … Continue reading


  • Product maturity

    After the innovation phase, assuming that your digital product was able to pass through the abyss, it has grown. Only there will come a time when your product will enter the stage of maturity – remember the product lifecycle?. This is … Continue reading


  • The role of the Product VP/Head

    Being a head of product encompasses many different aspects and skills, and that’s the reason why I’m writing an entire book about this topic. However, since this is a question I get asked frequently, I’ll make a brief introduction to … Continue reading


  • How to increase the chances of success of your digital product

    The first edition in Portuguese of this book is from 2015. I wrote an updated version of this book in 2017. So only two years passed since it latest version. However, learning is a continuous endeavor. I continue to learn … Continue reading


  • Problem vs solution mindset

    When we hurry to launch an MVP, we are creating a solution for a problem. However, a very important step to create a good solution is the understanding of the problem. It is human nature to jump into solution mode when … Continue reading


  • How does pricing work on a platform?

    I wrote some time ago about the difference between a product and a platform. Platform business model is a very interesting topic, many businesses can benefit from understanding its dynamics and applying its principles into their own product or service. I … Continue reading


  • Why the hurry to launch an MVP?

    Originally published in Oct/2012. Why do we need to make an MVP, a Minimal Viable Product? Why do we need to hurry to launch a half-baked product? Why not wait to have the product with more features to launch it? Herb … Continue reading


  • How to expand a marketplace?

    To answer this question we need to understand the dynamics of a marketplace. Basically, there are 3 types of elements in a marketplace: Supply: goods or services available for consumption Demand: people or businesses that may need goods or services offered by … Continue reading


  • Let’s talk about digital product revenue

    One of the most important questions from the opportunity assessment questionnaire we saw in the article about “A lot of opportunities” is the question: “How are we going to measure success and make money from this product?”. It deals with … Continue reading


  • The need for domain experts

    Conta Azul is a platform that connects Brazilian small businesses to their accountants and everything they need to run their businesses. It connects small business owners to their bank in order to provide centralized finance control of their businesses. It … Continue reading


  • How to make a career change to product management?

    That is a question that I get a lot in my talks and my inbox so it seems to be a hot topic. Here’s my suggestion on how to make this career move. First step: Study Even though this is … Continue reading


  • Putting it all together: vision, strategy, roadmap, and OKRs

    In my articles about the growth phase of the product lifecycle, I described a set of 4 tools that will be of great support for your digital product management work when used together: vision: is the reason why the product exists. It’s what … Continue reading


  • Designing your digital product strategy

    Once you have defined the product vision you’ll be probably thinking something along the lines of: “Hum, I think my product is still far from this vision.” Then comes the question “how do I get my product closer to this vision?”. This … Continue reading


  • What is and how to build your product vision

    At some point during the growth phase of your product, it may be helpful to create its vision and strategy. These tools will greatly help you in the decisions about what the future of your product will be. For this … Continue reading


  • Some considerations about metrics

    Measuring is good. Metrics are essential for knowing deeply your product and for making more accurate decisions. But you must be very careful. The excess of metrics can get in your way and overshadow your full knowledge of your product. … Continue reading