While I’ve previously posted about the requisite “soft-skills” of great Product Managers, in this Part of the series, we’ll explore the functional skill-set required on any given day. These competencies fall into three major categories, which I refer to the “3Ds”, consisting of Direction, Design, and Details. I believe that the Product Manager is ultimately responsible […]


When asked questions like “what does a product manager do” or ” is person X a good product manager”, too many times I answer with the unsatisfying “it depends” response. So here I try to better define the role of product management, by providing a framework, which we’ll explore in this 5-part series. My parents (and likely my colleagues too) have no idea what […]

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There are some great frameworks to evaluate the diffusion of new innovations, but these tend to be qualitative and can therefore be difficult to evaluate multiple nuanced implementations against one another. Here is a “back of the envelope” quantitative approach to assessing whether a new solution might displace an incumbent one, when competing on “convenience”. Competing on […]


While the web measurement & analytics space is quite mature, the mobile landscape is still emerging and open. Here are ten of the research & analytical tools that I’ve found most helpful for understanding mobile app usage. Would love to hear your thoughts.  Category & Competitive Benchmarking Similar to Quantcast, Alexa, Compete, and Google Trends […]


One critical element on the journey to finding product / market fit, is to get people to use your app — not just to simply sign-up, but to actually perform the key behaviors that drive value in the product. Here I’ll describe a framework to help you brainstorm, organize, and prioritize such initiatives. Understanding activation […]


While much has been written about the demise of BlackBerry (RIM), I’m unsatisfied with the common Innovator’s Dilemma argument. Just as the book Freakonomics taught us that economic puzzles can’t simply be explained by “supply & demand”, why tech companies fail is more nuanced than an innovator’s dilemma argument. My theory picks up on the […]


With a well defined set of needs, arranged into a hierarchy, the task now is to determine which of those are most important to deliver a product that generates customers interest. Prioritizing product development initiatives is often discussed, I’ve even written my share of posts, just as it is heavily studied in the field of marketing […]