I heard a story of an octogenarian who drove himself to the hospital for his eye cataracts operation. (Just let that sink in a bit.) On his surprisingly safe return home, his relatives queried the sense of his actions. He replied that what he lacked in sight, he made up for in driving experience.

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Like doing the washing-up, vacuuming under the sofa or cleaning your windows, housekeeping tasks with your product can get neglected because they’re tedious, not as interesting as new features and so on. However, if you’ve ever found yourself eating breakfast cereal out of an oven tray with a serving spoon because every single item of cutlery and crockery is festering in a pile in your sink, it should be apparent there is inherent value in tackling housekeeping tasks bit by bit over time.

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We’re looking at the kinds of information that specific groups of people need to know during the lifecycle of your product and why they’re so interested in the first place.

Last time we covered the steps from idea through to convincing people to part with some cash to build it. Now we’re going to look at building it and onwards through launch to review.

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Do you spend more time writing documents about your product than actually managing it?

Many companies with some kind of product management function become all caught up in the process, drowning themselves in increasing numbers of documents. These rapidly become overwhelming to manage, contain duplicated detail and ultimately obscure the real objective of product management, namely to create successful products.

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To be a product manager is to be an entrepreneur within your company. You need to take ownership and responsibility for all things to do with your product. Your approach needs to be holistic, evidence-based and diplomatic. You need the ability to jump between the big picture and the day-to-day detail. And you need to know your product, market, company and self to be effective.

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As a product manager, how do you know you’re doing your job well? This article outlines the problem with traditional metrics for product managers and offers some better alternatives for measuring success: communication, ideas, roadmapping, launch and end-of-life.

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