Keeping focused by saying “no”

From Des Traynor, in Product Strategy Means Saying No:

When your product gets traction, you’ll find yourself inundated with good ideas for features. These will come from your customers, your colleagues, and yourself. Because they’re good ideas, there’ll always be lots of reasons to say yes to them. Here’s 12 arguments that are commonly used to sneak features into a product:

  1. But the data looks good
  2. But it’ll only take a few minutes
  3. But this customer is about to quit
  4. But we can just make it optional
  5. But my cousin’s neighbor said…
  6. But we’ve nothing else planned
  7. But we’re supposed to be allowed to work on whatever we want
  8. But 713,000 people want it
  9. But our competitors already have it
  10. But if we don’t build it someone else will
  11. But the boss really wants it
  12. But this could be the one

The thing is, no one keeps crap ideas in their roadmap. Identifying and eliminating the bad ideas is the easy bit. Real product decisions aren’t easy. They require you to look at a proposal and say “This is a really great idea, I can see why our customers would like it. Well done. But we’re not going to build it. Instead, here’s what we’re doing.”.

One thought on “Keeping focused by saying “no”

  1. Pingback: Guidance for product managers: success = simplicity + focus | A Founder's Notebook

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