Getting the Product-Market fit right is tricky. Building a profitable product is even more difficult. If you ever had a chance to build, manage or ship a product, you will know what we are referring to. As a product manager - you are the one who is going to lead the product from conception to completion. More often than not, you are so swamped with your work that you can’t keep in touch with current trends and industry best practices. We get it!
Through our journey of getting the product-market fit right, scaling the product, and making it profitable - We have learnt A LOT! What you’ll find below is a list of resources we had bookmarked, and kept referring to time and again!
There are podcasts, videos, essays, stories, interviews, books, tools, ask-me-anything groups - everything that’s easy to access and refer to when the need arises!
To make it even simpler, we’ve organized them into sections, addressing each critical facet of managing a product; namely,
- Strategic Planning
- Skill Development For Product Managers
Bookmark them, read them, internalize them - This is your one-stop guide to being a resourceful product manager!
Strategic planning, ideally, follows a top-down approach unifying overall company objectives with the ones at the product level. It’s always better to know where you’d like to go, before you start building your way to get there!
Product Management 101
If you’re just breaking into the job of managing a product, this list could pretty well be your Bible!
A Product Manager’s Job - Josh Elman, Partner at Greylock Partners. Previously Twitter, Facebook.
Be a Great Product Leader - Adam Nash, EIR at Greylock Partners. Previously Wealthfront, LinkedIn, eBay, Apple.
What distinguishes the top 1% of PMs from the rest - Ian McAllister, Director of Alexa International at Amazon.
Let’s talk about Product Management - Josh Elman, Partner at Greylock Partners. Previously Twitter, Facebook.
PM at Microsoft - Steven Sinofsky, Veteran Product Development Leader.
How to Hire a Product Manager - Ken Norton, Partner, GV (Google Ventures). Previously, Product Manager at Google.
Good Product Manager/Bad Product Manager - Ben Horowitz, Co-founder and General Partner, Andreessen Horowitz
Great PMs don’t spend their time on solutions - Paul Adams, VP of Product, Intercom.
The DNA of Product Management - Hunter Walk, Partner at Homebrew VC. Previously YouTube, Google, Second Life.
Top Hacks from a PM Behind Two of Tech’s Hottest Products - First Round Review.
Product Vision & Strategy
The product vision represents the core essence of a product or a product line - it sets the direction for where a product is headed, or the needs a product is expected to address.
Complexity and Strategy - Terry Crowley on Hacker Noon.
If your product is Great, it doesn’t need to be Good - Paul Buchheit, Creator of Gmail.
All Markets Are Not Created Equal: 10 Factors To Consider When Evaluating Digital Marketplaces - Bill Gurley, General Partner, Benchmark Capital. Previously GrubHub, NextDoor, OpenTable.
Getting product strategy right - Des Traynor, Co-Founder & CEO, Intercom.
How to Develop Your Product Strategy - This is Product Management.
[Talk] Value Proposition Design - Alexander Osterwalder, Lead Author, Business Model Generation.
Blue Ocean Strategy - Summary by Allen Cheng, Co-founder, PrepScholar.
Are You Solving the Right Problems? Harvard Business Review (HBR).
Talk: Product strategy in 7 minutes - Des Traynor, Co-Founder & CEO, Intercom.
Vision vs Strategy - Marty Cagan - Silicon Valley Product Group.
[Talk] Job to be done - Clayton Christensen, Harvard Business School.
Know Your Customers’ “Jobs to Be Done” - Clayton Christensen, HBR
Building a deeper understanding of your users, their needs, motivations and how they intend to use your product - that’s user research for you! You will need actionable or testable data for future iterations.
A Practical Guide to User Needs - Julia Mitelman, Amazon Fashion.
What is User Research - Timothy Embretson, Invision.
10 Things I’ve Learned About Customer Development - Cindy Alvarez, Author, Lean Customer Development.
How to choose the right UX metrics for your product - Kerry Rodden, Google, YouTube.
Get the most out of your research with storytelling - Jillian Wells, Senior Product Researcher, Intercom.
How Do Users Really Hold Mobile Devices - Steven Hoober, UX Matters.
How to Design Your Customer Validation to Maximize Product/Market Fit - Sachin Rekhi, Notejoy.
Exploratory Research is Product Management - Teena Singh, Director Of User Experience, ADP.
How To Run A User Interview - Emmett Shear, Founder and CEO of Justin.tv and Twitch.
As a product manager, you are often advised to focus purely on the customer. But, a smart product manager will always keep an eye on the competitor! It’s just good sense to know what your competitors are up to - their product visions, their marketing strategies, the language used to describe their products to the market, the core problems that their products solve, etc.
Doing a competitive analysis - Open Classrooms.
Real competitive analysis is about learning to love your competitor - Chris Butler, Director of AI at Philosophie NYC.
A customer journey map, in plain simple words, helps you build a better product. It is a graphic or narrative representation of the customer’s relationship with a company, product or service. It shows the overlap between the customer’s expectations and the requirements of the business!
How to Create a Customer Journey Map - UX Mastery.
A Step By Step Guide To Building Customer Journey Maps - ConversionXL (CXL).
Journey Mapping Powers Better Design Thinking - Jay Melone, Invision.
How to Run an Empathy & User Journey Mapping Workshop - Harry Brignull, Head of UX, Smart Pension. Previously Spotify and Clearleft.
This next phase is all about getting your product built, tested and delivered to the market! As a product manager, this is when you roll up your sleeves and get the product out there where it needs to be.
Product design involves owning the entire process of sketching, collaborating, designing, writing CSS rules and structuring everything in a proper manner - something developers can integrate into their workflow without compromising on the design quality. What’s in it for a product manager? Product managers are responsible for the overall development of the product - this might include adding additional functionalities to the product, or making it simpler!
Design Thinking 101 - Sarah Gibbons, Nielsen Norman Group.
Product Designers: Artists of the Intangible - Chrys Bader.
Invisible design: why is less more? - Intercom.
Crafting The First Mile Of Product - Scott Belsky, Founder, Behance.
Wireframing & Specs
A wireframe is a static, low-fidelity representation of different layouts that form a product - a visual representation of an interface, to communicate the structure, content and functionality. Product specs include user stories, user personas, functional specs, and a business case to communicate the value the product will create for the user and the business.
UX Crash Course: 31 Fundamentals - Joel Marsh, The Hipper Element.
Wireframing for UX: What it is and how to get better at it - Ben Rowe, UX Mastery.
How to get value from wireframes - Dustin Senos, Former Head of Design, Medium.
Working Backwards - Werner Vogels, CTO, Amazon.com.
A product roadmap is a high-level visual summary of the vision and direction of your product offering over time. It’s best created with cross-functional inputs from the engineering, sales and marketing teams, as well as the management!
Before You Plan Your Product Roadmap - Des Traynor, Co-Founder & CEO, Intercom.
The 666 Roadmap - Paul Adams, VP of Product, Intercom.
How To Build A Product Roadmap Everyone Understands - Andrea Saez, ProdPad.
This Product Prioritization System Nabbed Pandora 70 Million Monthly Users with Just 40 Engineers - Tom Conrad, Pandora CTO.
Themes: A Small Change To Product Roadmaps With Large Effects - Jared M. Spool, Founder of @UIE.
The 80/20 Rule in User Experience - Arin Bhowmick, Global VP Design, IBM.
The One Cost Engineers and Product Managers Don’t Consider - Kris Gale, VP Engineering, Yammer.
A sprint is a set period of time during which specific work has to be completed and made ready for review. Each sprint begins with a planning meeting between the product owner (manager) and the development team. Agile is a commonly known group of software development methodologies where sprint cycles are used.
20 Product Prioritization Techniques - Folding Burritos.
The Next Feature Fallacy - Andrew Chen, General Partner, Andreessen Horowitz.
The Time Value Of Shipping - The Black Box of Product Management.
Babe Ruth And Feature Lists - Why Prioritized Feature Lists Can Be Poisonous - GV Library.
Prototypes are simply a snapshot of the product or service at that ‘point in time’. Prototyping helps reduce business risk, communicate and demonstrate the solution to the business, obtain customer feedback and gain insights into whether the product is doing its job!
Wireframing, Prototyping, Mockuping - What’s The Difference? - Marcin Treder, CEO, UXPin.
What Is A Prototype: A Guide To Functional UX - Jerry Cao, UXPin.
6 Steps To Superior Product Prototyping: Lessons From An Apple And Oculus Engineer - Caitlin Kalinowski, First Round Review.
Designing Interactive Experiences - The ‘What, When and How’ Of Interactive Prototyping - Eder Rengifo, Product Designer, Able.
This is the phase where everything comes together - product design, wireframing, specs, roadmapping, prototyping and all the steps that lead to the creation of the final product!
Speed As A Habit - Dave Girouard, CEO, Upstart.
Peacetime PM/Wartime PM - Noah Weiss, Head of Search, Learning, Intelligence, Slack.
Metrics VS Experience - Julie Zhou, Product Design VP, Facebook.
Putting On The Shipping Goggles - Jason Fried, Co-founder, Basecamp.
The Right Way To Ship Software - Jocelyn Goldfein, Former Engineering Executive, Facebook and VMware.
Amazon’s Friction-Killing Tactics To Make Products More Seamless - First Round Review.
A ‘continuous’ customer feedback loop designed well, maximises the benefits of gathering, recording and synthesizing feedback!
What You Can Do To Simplify Your Products - Ameet Ranadive, Entrepreneur.
Designing Your Product’s Continuous Feedback Loop - Sachin Rekhi, Notejoy.
A Minimum Viable Product Is Not A Product, It’s A Process - Yevgeniy Brikman, Y Combinator.
Slack’s First Product Manager On How To Make A Firehose Of Feedback Useful - Kenneth Berger, Slack, First Round Review.
Data & Analytics
Product management is data-driven! Analytics helps understand user behaviour, is a great tool to measure the progress of a product, to check if the product is viable, make informed product decisions, and also provides future inspiration for product work! It influences all the decisions leading to product development, including roadmaps, product design, wireframing, etc.
Everything A Product Manager Needs To Know About Analytics - Mind The Product.
The Only Metric That Matters - Josh Elman, Partner at Greylock Partners. Previously Twitter, Facebook.
Lean Analytics - Hiten Shah, Co-founder, Kissmetrics.
Lean Analytics - A Workshop By Google Ventures - Alistair Croll.
Skill Development For Product Managers
Product management is an ongoing process - there is always room for innovation, and improvement! Product managers can learn a lot simply by observing their contemporaries, understanding the market, analysing the best practices of their competition, and upgrading their functional knowledge.
One of the key features of a successful product manager - the ability to work in a collaborative way across different teams and departments to bring in new products, and increase the profitability of existing products!
How To Work With Engineers - A Cheat Sheet For Designers - Julie Zhou, Product Design VP, Facebook
Top Hacks From A PM Behind Two Of Tech’s Hottest Products - First Round Review.
The Job Of Leadership - Ev Williams, CEO, Medium.
How To Present Designs - Julie Zhou, Product Design VP, Facebook.
As a product manager, most of your time will be spent communicating ideas, plans, tasks, designs, etc.! There’ll be mails, presentations, specs and bug tickets!
Bad Managers Talk, Good Managers Write - I Done This Blog.
Product Management Communication Hacks - Invision.
A Product Manager’s Guide To Strong Team Communication - Mind The Product.
How To Communicate Your Roadmap To Stakeholders - Product Plan.
Growth is a mindset. And every product manager is a growth product manager.
How To Avoid Delusional Thinking In Start-up Growth Strategy - Aaron Schildkrout, Co-Founder, HowAboutWe.
The Product Death Cycle - Why It Happens And How To Break Out Of It - Andrew Chen, General Partner, Andreessen Horowitz
Unit Of Value - A Framework For Scaling - Jerry Chen, Partner, Greylock Partners.
The Product Scorecard - Silicon Valley Product Group.
What Product VPs At High-Growth Startups Have In Common - Mike Belsito, Co-founder, Product Collective.
To be effective, you’ve got to learn to ‘influence’. Therefore, a product manager must have (or develop) leadership skills!
Product Leadership Rules To Live By From My Experience At Pandora - Jack Krawczyk.
We Don’t Sell Saddles Here - Slack.
Quick solutions to the questions keeping you up at night!
- Ask Me Anything - Product Manager HQ
Talks & Interviews (Videos)
For every product manager who needs a little inspiration!
The Art Of Product Management - Sachin Rekhi, Notejoy.
7 Brilliant Little Skills To Master Your Role As A Product Manager - Janna Bastow, ProdPad.
Build For The Enterprise - Aaron Levie, Founder, Box.
Competition Is For Losers - Peter Thiel, Founder, Paypal.
A few must-reads for every ambitious product manager!
Intercom On Product Management - Intercom.
Product Leadership: How Top Product Managers Launch Awesome Products and Build Successful Teams - Richard Banfield, Martin Eriksson and Nate Walkingshaw.
The Lean Product Playbook By Dan Olsen.
Getting To Yes By Roger Fisher and William Ury.
Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products By Nir Eyal.
Positioning By Al Ries and Jack Trout.
The Design of Everyday Things By Donald Norman.
Thinking, Fast and Slow By Daniel Kahneman.
Don’t Make Me Think By Steve Krug.
Sprint By Jake Knapp.
Podcasts for the product managers looking to grow!
Announcing The Y Combinator Podcast - Y Combinator.
Inside Intercom Podcast - Intercom.
Masters Of Scale - Reid Hoffman, Co-founder, LinkedIn.
This Is Product Management - This Is Product Management.
Rocketship.fm - Rocketship.fm.
Andreessen Horowitz - Software Is Eating The World.
Product Management Communities
Learn from your contemporaries!
Product Manager HQ (paid)
Product Managers Community (free)
Product School (free)
Mind The Product (free)
Product Management As A Career
Make your own path as a product manager!
How 5 Product Managers Got Their Start - The Muse.
How To Be A Better SaaS PM - Tips From Top Saas PMs - Chargify.
How I Became A Product Manager - Product Manager HQ.
Thought Leaders You Need To Follow!
Keep yourself updated - follow these product management gurus!
Chris Dixon - https://medium.com/@cdixon
Dustin Curtis - https://dcurt.is/
Des Traynor - https://blog.intercom.com/author/des/
Dan Olsen - https://dan-olsen.com/
Julie Zhou - http://www.juliezhuo.com/
Diana Kimball Berlin] - https://dianaberlin.com/
Ken Norton - https://www.kennorton.com/
Ian McAllister - https://medium.com/@ianmcall
Josh Elman - http://medium.com/@joshelman
Kenneth Berger - https://medium.com/@kberger
Paul Adams - https://blog.intercom.com/author/pauladams/
Did we miss anything? Let us know if you want to add anything in this list by commenting down below, we would more than happy to add it.