PRODUCTHEAD: The most popular of 2023

PRODUCTHEAD: The most popular of 2023

PRODUCTHEAD is a regular newsletter of product management goodness,
curated by Jock Busuttil.

no products #

every PRODUCTHEAD edition is online for you to refer back to


tl;dr

Most read: Choose your own adventure — discussing better product roadmaps

Most clicked: How to sharpen up your vision and strategy — a practical set of prompts and worked examples


hello

I’m calling it a smidge early, but it looks like we’ve made it through to the end of 2023 relatively unscathed. Thank you as always for reading along with me, however long you have been a subscriber.

This week’s edition of PRODUCTHEAD looks back over 2023 at the editions and featured contributions that have been most popular with you. A special ‘thank you’ of course to all the experts who have shared their product management experience and advice.

most read editions of 2023 #

The PRODUCTHEAD edition that attracted both the most reads and the most clicked links to featured articles was “Choose your own adventure” from January:

“Why is it taking so long to improve our conversion rate this quarter?” a passing stakeholder might ask. A traditional roadmap won’t help me to explain the many approaches the team has already tried and discarded on their quest to reach the desired outcome. It’s hard to show my stakeholder where all the time has gone.

A product roadmap isn’t like a collection of fixed checkpoints along a route to a particular destination. It’s more like you and your team are stuck in an maze that gradually reveals itself to you.

The article was my attempt to pin down in words why I felt a product roadmap fails to tell the whole story of your product. I believe it should describe what you chose not to do and why, as much as what you did.

When I wrote it, I wasn’t entirely sure whether I would get my points across, so it’s pleasing to see one of my more left-field contributions being so popular with you.

1. Choose your own adventure (16 January 2023)

2. Games and customer onboarding (1 May 2023)

3. PRODUCTHEAD turns 3 🎂 / The changing realities of product management (11 September 2023)

4. The perils of pitch presentation culture (27 February 2023)

5. This article was NOT written by AI (23 January 2023)

editions in 2023 with the most clicked articles #

Another edition that resonated with you was a reflective piece coinciding with PRODUCTHEAD’s third anniversary. I described the pros and cons of writing a weekly product management newsletter for three years, and Eira Hayward, Janna Bastow, Matt LeMay and Johanna Feick offered their thoughts on the changing nature of product management itself.

Eira herself pulls together views from various product leaders in her article. In particular, I concur with Mind The Product’s Managing Director Emily Tate, who says, “The basics never change, it’s the more advanced stuff that changes.” We may have more rapid and effective ways to create product, but fundamentally we still have to focus on identifying what people truly need and value, rather than being distracted by shiny things.

1. Choose your own adventure (16 January 2023)

2. How to align vision, strategy and action (10 July 2023)

3. PRODUCTHEAD turns 3 🎂 / The changing realities of product management (11 September 2023)

4. ‘Better’ decision making (8 May 2023)

5. What do you worry about on a Sunday night? (15 May 2023)

Focusing more on the articles, podcasts and videos I’ve featured in PRODUCTHEAD in 2023, the spread of topics covered by the most clicked provides quite a neat overview of product management.

Martin Eriksson’s touchstone article (and THAT Venn diagram) describing the role of a product manager continues to be popular over a decade after he published it. You wanted to read about the theory of the product lifecycle and customer churn, as well as practical techniques to prioritise and build your strategy and product roadmaps. And my article on how you can regain control of your own narrative at work also seemed to attract your attention.

1. How to sharpen up your vision and strategy – Jock Busuttil, I Manage Products

2. Onwards and upwards: Navigating the changing product landscape – Eira Hayward, Mind The Product

3. What, exactly, is a Product Manager? – Martin Eriksson, Mind The Product

4. 10 tips for creating an agile product roadmap – Roman Pichler, Pichler Consulting

5. Seven questions to build a roadmap – Jamie Arnold

6. Visualizing the interactions between CAC, churn and LTV – Gordon Daugherty, A Smart Bear

7. Product life cycle management: The 4 stages and how to manage them – Janna Bastow, ProdPad

8. The only article you’ll ever need on prioritization – Jock Busuttil, I Manage Products

9. Control your narrative – Jock Busuttil, I Manage Products

10. Idea prioritization with ICE and the confidence meter – Itamar Gilad

Have a joyous and peaceful break from stressing about your products this holiday season. I’ll be back in the new year with more product management goodness for you.

Speak to you soon,

Jock




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PRODUCTHEAD is a newsletter for product people of all varieties, and is lovingly crafted from many, many mince pies.


Read more from Jock

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 product management and leadership coach, product leader 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, X (formerly Twitter) and LinkedIn.

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