Ask a PM about their day-to-day, and they’ll likely tell you about their company’s mission (“Our software will change the world”), their customers (“We have a really robust, engaged community”), the initiatives they are working on to help their customers and in turn their company, and HOW they are getting that work done.
For me, I’m in the camp that there is no one size fits all workflow style for everybody, and that it’s imperative that you should choose the right workflow for the team and the environment.
When Steve Jobs died in 2011, I read Walter Isaacson’s biography. Jobs’ aggressive pushing of vision, against resistance from co-workers and the marketplace, seemed key to Apple’s unprecedented impact. To a lean extremist, the Steve Jobs phenomenon is pretty confusing. My bias was to be adaptive to marketplace signal, not to ignore it. As someone with my own dreams of changing the world, I admired Steve Jobs. Yet, I espoused a doctrine that made his success unintelligible. In retrospect, I’m amazed by how long I lived with this contradiction.
If you follow publications like Tech Crunch and Wired, you might have the impression that the only thing standing between you and Series A funding or a billion-dollar buyout is getting your product built.
These days it seems I’m known less for my role as co-founder and CEO of The Development Factory — where we help conceive, design and build more than 80 products a year for brands and entrepreneurs — than I am for my role as Product Management Instructor at General Assembly.