Weeknotes 342

This week I did:


Did quite a lot of work on what the environment should look like for supporting the feasibility of products. There’s lots to do to get to where I want us to be, but I have a pretty good sense of it. Part of this is thinking about how to show the value of the quiet work that goes on in maintaining the technology, but not so sure about this part yet. The next part of the environment to work on is usability. This includes things like accessibility, a mobile-first approach to user journeys, automating some testing.

Product manager leader board

I’m number 3,011 in Product Management on Twitter. Obviously that means I’m more important than number 3,012 (kidding). I haven’t used it yet, but Hive looks like an interesting tool for helping to understand communities on Twitter.


Governance – the overlooked route to transformation

How we relate, work together, and organise are cornerstones of change making. I’m very interested in governance models as ways of creating change rather than enforcing control and maintaining a status quo.

Documentation in Remote Teams

This is an interesting article about cultivating a culture of documentation in remote teams. Documentation is hard. The usual way to think about managing it is to try to keep it all in one place. But that’s not very internet-y. Better to link between things wherever they are. I think a really useful technique in managing documentation is to create trails from current documents to relevant older documents. The longer and more complex a project, the more links later documents have, which gives anyone looking back through the documents a sense of what came later as it links to early documents, which don’t link forward.

Transformational systemic change

We must increase the scale, speed, impact and meaning of our collective actions toward achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. Mission-oriented innovation attempts to produce transformational systemic change.

And thought about:

Designing for change

When designing and setting up a system, whether a technical system or a social system like a team or organisation, should you design it for how things are now, how they will be in the future, or for the change in between? It’s likely that those three are mutually exclusive and incompatible with each other. Setting up for how things are now might make it harder to change towards the future state. Setting up for how things might be in the future could be wasteful and is definitely risky as we don’t know how things will turn out. Setting up for the change creates disharmony with the current state, and is necessarily temporary, meaning things will have to be set up again as the future state approaches.

Horizon scanning

I did a bit of thinking about how to create a horizon scanner for product managers, how they’d know what to look for in their industry. I also thought about how, to be useful you’d need some sense of trending and analysis of history to see where things might be heading. So, if you were a PM in EdTech right now you’d be all over ChatGPT for what impact it might have in the short term but you’d also be looking over the history of new tech being introduced to the education space and how it hardly ever revolutionises things, but all the organisations use it to reinforce their business models and maintain the status quo. You’d make very different strategic decisions about the impact AI will have on education if you knew how that trend beats the tech emerging tech trend to if you just saw the tech side. You can’t be an effective product manager if you don’t know what’s going in your industry.