300 episodes

Product Mastery Now (previously The Everyday Innovator) is a weekly podcast dedicated to your success as a product manager, leader and innovator. Join me, Chad McAllister, for interviews with product professionals, discussing their successes, failures, and lessons-learned to help you excel in your career and create products your customers will love. Every organization must have products that provide value to their customers. People like you who know how to create that value are the ones with real influence. The topics are relevant to product and innovation management, and include: creating a culture of innovation, managing product development, validating the viability of product concepts, conducting market research, selecting a product innovation methodology, generating product ideas, working well with teams and cross-functionally, and much more.

Product Mastery Now for Product Managers, Innovators, and Leaders Chad McAllister, PhD - Helping Product Managers become Product Masters

    • Business
    • 4.9 • 62 Ratings

Product Mastery Now (previously The Everyday Innovator) is a weekly podcast dedicated to your success as a product manager, leader and innovator. Join me, Chad McAllister, for interviews with product professionals, discussing their successes, failures, and lessons-learned to help you excel in your career and create products your customers will love. Every organization must have products that provide value to their customers. People like you who know how to create that value are the ones with real influence. The topics are relevant to product and innovation management, and include: creating a culture of innovation, managing product development, validating the viability of product concepts, conducting market research, selecting a product innovation methodology, generating product ideas, working well with teams and cross-functionally, and much more.

    Special: Interviewed by Tom Leung, FiresidePM, about challenges in product management and more

    Special: Interviewed by Tom Leung, FiresidePM, about challenges in product management and more

    How product managers and leaders break through challenges

    Tom Leung is the Director of Product Management at Google Health and was previously at YouTube. He also hosts the Fireside Product Management podcast.



    This is a special episode of the Product Mastery Now podcast as Tom is interviewing me. He invited me as a guest on his Fireside podcast. We had a great discussion and I wanted to share it here as well.

    We covered several topics, with a focus on recommendations for overcoming challenges organizations and product leaders encounter developing products customers love. They are:



    * Lead with the Problem, Not the Solution

    * Start with Strategy

    * Engage Customers

    * Share High-Value Resources

    * Clarify the Customers

    * Portfolio Management

    * Project Selection

    * Do More With Less

    * Manage the Product Lifecycle

    * Maximize the Benefit of a Product Process



    Click here to get a PDF with more information about each recommendation.

    Useful links:



    * Tom’s FiresidePM podcast

    * 10 Changes Product Teams Should Make Now to

    Consistently Launch Products Customers Love



     

    Thanks!

    Thank you for taking the journey to product mastery and learning with me from the successes and failures of product innovators, managers, and developers. If you enjoyed the discussion, help out a fellow product manager by sharing it using the social media buttons you see below.

    • 52 min
    384: Why listening is the next product management superpower – with Christine Miles

    384: Why listening is the next product management superpower – with Christine Miles

    How product managers can achieve transformational listening

    Today we are talking about listening. How would you rate yourself as a listener? I consider it a superpower for product managers and innovators, because proper listening is a key way to learn what customers need. It is also a behavior of those gaining influence in their organizations.

    To help all of us better develop this superpower, Christine Miles joins us. She is the author of What Is It Costing You Not to Listen: The Power of Understanding to Connect, Influence, Solve & Sell.

    For three decades, Christine has been helping organizations improve by applying human skills to drive results and build cultures of empathy. Teaching people to listen differently has been a big part her work.

    Summary of some concepts discussed for product managers

    [2:55] Through working with CEOs, what have you learned about the importance of listening?

    CEOs know listening is important, but they often haven’t taught people how to do it. Performance is accelerated by emotional acuity, not just intelligence. Superstars have both emotional intelligence and technical skills.

    [5:34] What’s a story of a failure that happened because people weren’t listening well?

    We tend to overestimate our listening skills, and none of our education systems teach listening skills. We’re all failing to listen, because we’re not equipped to know how to do it.

    I was on a very technical call with engineers who had delivered an energy-saving product and were validating the results. The engineers and the customer thought they were talking about the same thing, but they weren’t on the same page at all. The engineers weren’t hearing what the customer was asking for. Fortunately, the head of sales had been trained in how to listen differently, and he intervened and got them aligned so the engineers could solve the right problem. The main failure that results from not listening is we end up solving the wrong problems.

    [9:36] What is the foundation of listening differently?

    Listening differently or transformational listening goes beyond attentive listening. Just paying attention is a low bar to achieve. To listen differently, we need to understand and uncover insight. When you do that, you’ve earned the right to solve the problem.

    [12:56] How can product managers avoid falling in love with their solution and thinking they’re listening when they’re actually filtering information through the framework of what they believe the customer needs?

    The brain is the enemy of listening. We’re all telling ourselves a story, which can contaminate what the customer may really need. You can’t white-knuckle your way to listening differently. You wouldn’t go into the woods to get over the mountains without tools in your backpack, but we go into important conversations without being prepared, thinking we can white-knuckle our way to the other side of the woods.

    [15:44] What tools do we need to listen differently?

    The most powerful story you can tell someone is their own. We influence people by understanding their stories. Understanding and saying we understand have nothing to do with each other. If I reflect, confirm, and validate what you said, then we truly have understanding.

    Every time you’re in a conversation, a story is happening, and you need to understand the story to discover the insight. Some of the most important tools are the Six Most Powerful Questions:



    * Take me back to the beginning. People tend to start in the middle of their story and go forward, but we need to go backward so we’re on the path together. Asking why questions can cause people to shut down rather than open up. Asking where the story starts causes them to relax and open up.

    * Tell me more.

    * Then what happened?

    * How does that make you feel?

    • 35 min
    383: Working better with your CTO for innovation – with Steve Orrin

    383: Working better with your CTO for innovation – with Steve Orrin

    How CTOs contribute to innovation and product management superiority

    Today we are talking about senior roles that contribute to innovation, specifically the role of CTO (Chief Technology Officer). Product managers and leaders interact with many people in their organizations, and knowing how to leverage professional relationships is important to success.

    Joining us is Steve Orrin, CTO at Intel. Steve orchestrates and executes customer engagements in the federal space, overseeing the development of products to address challenges in government enterprise, national security, and other federal areas of focus. He has a reputation as an industry leader, leveraging a history of delivering results in Innovation, Intrapreneurship, and Entrepreneurship. 

    Summary of some concepts discussed for product managers

    [1:52] What’s your role like as Federal Chief Technology Officer (CTO)?

    My role is to be the interface between federal customers, the ecosystem that services them, our product line, and the product managers, engineering teams, and executives. I help translate and architect our technologies to match government’s missions and unique challenges. I lead our innovation teams, which are working directly with government customers on technical challenges. This comes in two forms: federalized commercial technology, which is modifying technology that works in other industries for the federal problem set, and pathfinding on new capabilities.

    [5:43] How have you seen the CTO role differ in different organizations?



    Thanks!

    Thank you for taking the journey to product mastery and learning with me from the successes and failures of product innovators, managers, and developers. If you enjoyed the discussion, help out a fellow product manager by sharing it using the social media buttons you see below.

    • 38 min
    382: How to manage change when your product disrupts your organization – with Brendon Baker

    382: How to manage change when your product disrupts your organization – with Brendon Baker

    How product managers can become change leaders

    Today we are talking about change. The very nature of our work as product managers and leaders creates change—we change existing products to make them more valuable to customers and our organization, and we create completely new products, which causes change to occur at many levels. Your work demands that you are competent leading change.

    To help us learn how to better manage the change our product projects create, Brendon Baker is with us. He has helped organizations across several industries navigate change created by large transformation projects. He is also the managing director of the firm Valuable Change Co and author of the book Valuable Change: What You Need to Know to Ensure Your Change Pays Off. I appreciate his personal mission statement, which is “Help Change Leaders Drive Real Value.”

    Summary of some concepts discussed for product managers

    [1:58] How did you become the guy who helps organizations with change?

    As a child, I wanted to be an entrepreneur, and I didn’t want to do Business as Usual—doing the same thing every day scared me. I got into project management then consulting. Throughout my career, I saw a pattern: Change leadership made the difference in whether change was successful or not, yet those change leaders were essentially abandoned by the industry. There are not textbooks or certifications for change leadership. It’s assumed everyone can do it. I’ve found people can’t always do it—not from a lack of skills or capability but from a lack of support and knowledge. Change leaders default to running change based on time and cost, which doesn’t ultimately achieve the value they’re looking for.

    Thanks!

    Thank you for taking the journey to product mastery and learning with me from the successes and failures of product innovators, managers, and developers. If you enjoyed the discussion, help out a fellow product manager by sharing it using the social media buttons you see below.

    • 35 min
    381: Tactics for increasing the innovation capacity of your organization – with Kapil Kane

    381: Tactics for increasing the innovation capacity of your organization – with Kapil Kane

    Integrating the advantages of large organizations and startups – for product managers

    Today we are talking about how your organization can more effectively innovate, using precious resources wisely to create new value. We may not talk about your organization by name, but what we will learn together will certainly apply and help you.

    Joining us is Kapil Kane, the Director of Innovation for Intel China. He is also the founder of GrowthX, a corporate startup accelerator. His experiences have helped him integrate the advantages of large organizations, like Intel, with the scrappiness and agility of startups, and we get to benefit from the insights he’ll share with us.

    Summary of some concepts discussed for product managers

    [1:38] What does your role involve as the Director of Innovation for Intel China?

    I have three main goals: create and orchestrate one innovation strategy for Intel China, grow and transform our talent and get them skilled in the methodologies of innovation, and bring bottom-up innovation ideas from our employees into the pipeline. Ultimately we want to deliver business growth and people growth.

    Thanks!

    Thank you for taking the journey to product mastery and learning with me from the successes and failures of product innovators, managers, and developers. If you enjoyed the discussion, help out a fellow product manager by sharing it using the social media buttons you see below.

    • 33 min
    379: Product strategy is changing. Are you ready? – with Ron Adner, PhD

    379: Product strategy is changing. Are you ready? – with Ron Adner, PhD

    What product managers need to know about having an ecosystem strategy

    Today we are talking about strategy. It’s an important topic because our work as product managers and innovators should be in alignment with our organization’s strategy, but strategy may not be what you think it is.

    To help us better understand strategy and the large changes taking place in many businesses, Dr. Ron Adner joins us. He is a Professor of Strategy and Entrepreneurship at the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College. Previously he was the Akzo-Nobel Fellow of Strategic Management at INSEAD. His research examines value creation and competition when industry boundaries are changing. His latest book is Winning the Right Game: How to Disrupt, Defend, and Deliver in a Changing World. He has received high praise from his contemporaries, including Clayton Christensen who described his work as “Path-breaking,” and Jim Collins (author of Good to Great) who called him “one of our most important strategic thinkers for the 21st century.”

    Summary of some concepts discussed for product managers

    [2:59] Make this simple—what is strategy?

    Strategy is an indication of what you want to do. A classic test for strategy is,

    Thanks!

    Thank you for taking the journey to product mastery and learning with me from the successes and failures of product innovators, managers, and developers. If you enjoyed the discussion, help out a fellow product manager by sharing it using the social media buttons you see below.

    • 35 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
62 Ratings

62 Ratings

Arlie K ,

Actionable + Empowering!

This is seriously *the* place for product people. If you’re looking for inspiration, motivation, AND actionable advice, look no further. Thanks so much for putting out such a stellar show, Chad - keep up the great work!

Dan Balcauski ,

Great content

This show has a lot of great content! Chad does an awesome job in interviewing guests and presents the information clearly. Lots of actionable takeaways. If you are in the product space (or would like to learn more), this show MUST be on your playlist.

malfoxley ,

Great show!

Chad, host of the podcast, highlights all aspects of having a successful business and more in this can’t miss podcast! The host and expert guests offer insightful advice and information that is helpful to anyone that listens!

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