David Housman

Agile Analytics


Its easy for product owners (and their products) to get absorbed by scope creep. Especially young products. When you’re just starting out, low hanging fruit are everywhere. Opportunities are falling onto your plate. Like the Sizzler’s buffet, the costs/rewards of features for young products is hard to walk away from.

An environment without constraints is like sugar to a diabetic. Good products come from recognizing and making choices- continually optimizing, assessing the grain: keeping the wheat, discarding the chaff. Without deadlines and resource constraints, Product Managers don’t have to make those decisions- they can just keep reaching out for more.

The first release of a new product needs to reflect a product’s strategy. You can’t satisfy everyone. The key here is making head’s up decisions about who you don’t satisfy. Beware PMs that want to build “perfect” products: perfection is just not cost effective.

In the Sizzler’s of product development, beware the desire to put too much on your plate- you might never make it back from the buffet.

Sprawl is what happens when you’ve got too much stuff and too much room. Rambling is what happens when you have too much time and not enough message. Be organized. Be concise. Constraints are the foundation of innovation. My advice to young product managers is to set a schedule. Hold yourself to it. Even if you’re the only one in your organization that is enforcing those constraints. It’s better to build and iterate than to try to build something perfect. Set a calendar and be relentless.


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