By way of an introduction

Why write a blog? #

Up until recently if someone had suggested that I start writing a blog (or twittering, but that’s a story for another time) I would most likely have unfurled my ‘To Do’ list with a flourish, watched the unrolling end bounce off the floor and gestured vaguely into the distance.

So what’s changed? #

Blogging is ridiculous because the word to me sounds faintly unsanitary

Before I became a product manager, I used to write a great deal more, not only relatively serious essays and papers, but also creative nonsense and frivolous, fictional articles mainly for the amusement of friends who shared the same daft sense of humour.

As a product manager, the most creatively I’ve written recently has been to use an adjective in a use case once, though I had to remove it in a subsequent draft of my requirements document following a complaint Development escalated to my line manager.

I’m despairing at my diminishing vocabulary, mortified at my dependency on meaningless stock management phrases and I’m no longer thinking outside the box as creatively as I used to.  I’m sure this can’t be healthy.

Let me tell you what changed my mind about blogging.  Couple of reasons, really:

1. I’m getting better at letting things go.

Take the word ‘blog’ for example.  I’m no longer afflicted by the urge to tell everyone that blogging is ridiculous because the word to me sounds faintly unsanitary.  I’ve let it go.

2. My memory’s getting worse. #

Or at least, I think it is.  I find it hard to remember these days.

In general I tend to live in the moment.  Very much like Guy Pearce in the film Memento, I survive from day to day at work by writing everything down that I’m meant to be doing, then having a REALLY BIG post-it note on my screen (Outlook, natch) which reminds me to look at all the smaller notes.

This blog is really a way for me to remind myself that I used to know something about product management once.  I have however drawn the line at taking minutes by tattooing myself with biro ink and a needle in meetings.

3. Being creative makes me sparkier in general #

Being creative forces me to use parts of my brain other than the ones needed to open a P&L spreadsheet at the ‘Costs’ tab, locate cells B15:F84 and swear LOUDLY at broken formulae.  After writing a few articles, I’ve found I’m far better equipped to cope with these everyday situations.  Or at least, to curse more florally.

So here I am, writing this blog, both for your benefit and my own.

I Manage Products.  Welcome aboard.  Seatbelts are advisable.

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The Practitioner's Guide to Product Management book cover

The Practitioner's Guide To Product Management

by Jock Busuttil

“This is a great book for Product Managers or those considering a career in Product Management.”

— Lyndsay Denton

Jock Busuttil is a freelance head of product, product management coach and author. He has spent over two decades working with technology companies to improve their product management practices, from startups to multinationals. In 2012 Jock founded Product People Limited, which provides product management consultancy, coaching and training. Its clients include BBC, University of Cambridge, Ometria, Prolific and the UK’s Ministry of Justice and Government Digital Service (GDS). Jock holds a master’s degree in Classics from the University of Cambridge. He is the author of the popular book The Practitioner’s Guide To Product Management, which was published in January 2015 by Grand Central Publishing in the US and Piatkus in the UK. He writes the blog I Manage Products and weekly product management newsletter PRODUCTHEAD. You can find him on Mastodon, Twitter and LinkedIn.

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