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ProdPad flying the flag of good product management at #websummit

October 30, 2013

Team News & Events

The WebSummit in Ireland’s beautiful capital has quickly become an annual highlight of the technology industry’s conference circuit (and is apparently worth €24m to the local economy!).  Bringing together around 10,000 people in technology, venture capital, tech journalism, startups, entreprises, etc. and only an hour’s flight from London, we had to come this year.

What’s more, we’re proud to have been selected as an “ALPHA startup” – a category we’re joined in by great businesses like PowToon, Hull, EngageSciences and many more.  The event kicked off today and we’d like to share 3 things we picked up from the multitude of talks that we found useful for product managers to bear in mind.

If you’re at the event tomorrow, 31st Oct, come find us at Stall 330 in the ALPHA area to talk about technology, superheroes* and all things product!

* come by the stand if this intrigues you!

Startups: Don’t just sprint – build for long term value!

Product Management is not a sprint

If you’re always sprinting (not in the Agile sense!), you’ll risk not creating long term value (image source)

This message resonated through a number of talks, including an interview with Liam Casey, CEO of PCH International, and Gary Vaynerchuk‘s passionate keynote.  Whether it was phrased as “Focus on the mission, and the money will follow” (tweet this) or “Stop thinking about your own goals, start thinking about your user’s goals instead” (tweet this), the point was clear: too many products are not truly built with the user in mind.  And the ones that are, genuinely do well.

Most likely, every company you talk to at #websummit will say they are user-centric – but how many of them really are?

At ProdPad, we want to do our bit to help companies build better products by providing product management software that forces you to ask the right questions, prioritise the right features, and map out your product roadmap strategically.

You can only fix problems if they’re a REAL problem

Again, main man Liam Casey making the case for identifying the most crucial pain points.  If you have to explain to your potential customers what problem you’re solving, you’re doing it wrong.  Don’t get too excited about a potential problem – go out there and verify that it actually exists.

Whether you use ProdPad to develop user personas and manage your team’s ideas or not, make sure you have the right processes in place to focus your product development on the right issues.

Luckily, the very act of doing product management right will help you figure out if the problem is real or not – come talk to us, email hello@prodpad.com, or get in touch on Twitter via @prodpad to talk more about this!

Skateboarding and entrepreneurship actually have a lot in common

Tony Hawk Websummit product management

Tony Hawk keeping it real. Upside down. But with a helmet – very sensible! (image source)

Tony Hawk at the #websummit sounds like an unlikely fit, right? Well, not so fast cowboys and -girls!  Turns out that skateboarding and entrepreneurship have a lot in common, such as:

  1. See your mistakes as learning experiences, and keep. getting. up.
  2. The best new moves are often the result of combining two existing tricks
  3. With social media, getting feedback is instantaneous – whether it’s on a video of Tony doing a McTwist (that’s a trick, not a new McDonald’s dessert!) or a new product feature

Alright, friends – that’s it for the first day of #WebSummit.  Tomorrow we’re looking forward to seeing Elon Musk, and obviously meeting y’all in the ALPHA area!

 

Janna Bastow is co-founder of ProdPad, software that helps product managers plan and deliver better products. Janna also organizes ProductTank events around the world, including Mind The Product, a global community of product managers. She likes to inspire great product conversations by asking: “What problem are you trying to solve?”

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