122 episodes

Brought to you by Nils Davis, this podcast will help you become a better product manager, marketer, innovator, or entrepreneur. With thought provoking and action-oriented content - this podcast tackles problems ranging from finding and validating market problems, to creating innovative solutions, to taking those solutions to market. Simply put, it will help you move your skills - and your products - to the next level.

The Secrets of Product Management Podcast by Nils Davis Nils Davis

    • Business
    • 5.0 • 20 Ratings

Brought to you by Nils Davis, this podcast will help you become a better product manager, marketer, innovator, or entrepreneur. With thought provoking and action-oriented content - this podcast tackles problems ranging from finding and validating market problems, to creating innovative solutions, to taking those solutions to market. Simply put, it will help you move your skills - and your products - to the next level.

    119: John Fontenot and The Urgency of “Never Assume”

    119: John Fontenot and The Urgency of “Never Assume”

    Never Assume

    You can’t trust anyone. Even yourself. Product managers have to keep an open mind, be empathetic, and work in a world of uncertainty. That uncertainty extends especially to ourselves and our own assumptions. So my guest John Fontenot has a warning – Never Assume!

    John’s new book Never Assume: 10 Fatal Assumptions Great Product Managers Never Make is about the most common – and dangerous – assumptions product managers can make. How they lead to problems. And of course, to how we can overcome these assumptions.

    In this episode, we go into depth on Never Assume, but we also cover other awesome topics:



    * How John get into product in the first place.

    * The lessons John got from studying agribiz as an undergraduate.

    * The best way to get into that first product management job.

    * His new offering for aspiring product managers at Path 2 Product.



    Books John mentioned

    John had a lot of books to recommend – many of them are mentioned in his book as well:



    * Teresa Torres’ Continuous Discovery Habits: Discover Products that Create Customer Value and Business Value

    * David Bland’s Testing Business Ideas: A Field Guide for Rapid Experimentation

    * Etiene Garbugli’s Solving Product: Reveal Gaps, Ignite Growth, and Accelerate Any Tech Product with Customer Research. John says this book is an undiscovered gem.

    * Andy Grove’s Only The Paranoid Survive

    * Richard Rumelt’s Good Strategy Bad Strategy



    Connecting with John



    * LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/johnrfontenot/

    * Twitter: https://twitter.com/ProductFont

    * Email:  john@path2product.io.



     

     

     

    Never Assume

    You can’t trust anyone. Even yourself. Product managers have to keep an open mind, be empathetic, and work in a world of uncertainty. That uncertainty extends especially to ourselves and our own assumptions. So my guest John Fontenot has a warning – Never Assume!

    John’s new book Never Assume: 10 Fatal Assumptions Great Product Managers Never Make is about the most common – and dangerous – assumptions product managers can make. How they lead to problems. And of course, to how we can overcome these assumptions.

    In this episode, we go into depth on Never Assume, but we also cover other awesome topics:



    * How John get into product in the first place.

    * The lessons John got from studying agribiz as an undergraduate.

    * The best way to get into that first product management job.

    * His new offering for aspiring product managers at Path 2 Product.



    Books John mentioned

    John had a lot of books to recommend – many of them are mentioned in his book as well:



    * Teresa Torres’ Continuous Discovery Habits: Discover Products that Create Customer Value and Business Value

    * David Bland’s a href="https://amzn.

    • 39 min
    118: The Chicken and Egg Problem – Getting A Product Management Job With No PM Experience

    118: The Chicken and Egg Problem – Getting A Product Management Job With No PM Experience

    Getting A Product Management Job With No PM Experience

    This is a hard problem – getting that first product management job without product management experience is one of the harder challenges of the product management career.

    In this episode, some ideas on how to navigate this challenge:



    * Often a lateral move is the best route

    * You need to show a set of characteristics and skills to be considered

    * Being able to show and communicate about your characteristics and skills is one of the characteristics and skills!

    * You can build the “hard skills” of product management with a side project or other ways

    * If you’re a product “wannabe” then you probably have “product management” stories you don’t know you have. I love helping people find those stories.



    People to follow



    * Andrew Bowker – Andrew has a great weekly newsletter with tips for product management job seekers, and lots of advice on side projects to pursue.

    * Shyvee Shi – Shyvee is a great resource for learning about product management and getting that next PM job.

    * Ioana Buzoianu – Much of Ioana’s content focuses on helping folks get through the PM interview process.



    Links



    * Some of my posts about showing your product management characteristics and stories:



    * Do you want to move into product management, but you “don’t have product experience?”

    * Product Sense: What is it?

    * Asking questions in job interviews.

    * Good product manager candidates have *built* something.





    * The Perfect Product Manager Resume podcast episode.

    * Go To Market For Yourself podcast episode.

    * Tell Your Own Story cheatsheet (download)



     

    Getting A Product Management Job With No PM Experience

    This is a hard problem – getting that first product management job without product management experience is one of the harder challenges of the product management career.

    In this episode, some ideas on how to navigate this challenge:



    * Often a lateral move is the best route

    * You need to show a set of characteristics and skills to be considered

    * Being able to show and communicate about your characteristics and skills is one of the characteristics and skills!

    * You can build the “hard skills” of product management with a side project or other ways

    * If you’re a product “wannabe” then you probably have “product management” stories you don’t know you have. I love helping people find those stories.

    • 27 min
    117: The Secret of Great Social Proof

    117: The Secret of Great Social Proof

    The Secret of Great Social Proof

    One of the main jobs of our rational brain is to justify the decisions of our emotional brain.

    As product managers, the decision that interests us the most is people deciding to buy our product.

    That means we need to understand how to make our product, our positioning, and our marketing appeal to our prospect’s emotional brain.

    In this episode – how to do that, using stories of our customers achievement of personal goals, as the basis for great social proof for our product’s awesomeness.

    Links



    * Alan Cooper’s The Inmates Are Running The Asylum – one of the canonical texts on interaction design, the source (for me, anyway) of the concept “personal goals,” and a fun read.

    * Dan Pink’s Drive, about how motivation really works, and To Sell Is Human, a fresh look at how people really buy things, and how to sell to them.

    * Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion and Presuasion by Robert Cialdini

    * Previous blog posts and podcast episodes



    * 7 Persuasion Tips For More Influence and Better Engagement (article)

    * Don’t Just Use Social Proof – Make Sure It’s Personal (article)

    * The Secrets Behind a Remarkable Go-To-Market Strategy (podcast episode)

    * The Product Management-Product Marketing Interface (podcast episode)







    Subscribe, Rate, ​Review

    You can subscribe to the podcast using the buttons below, or the ones over to the right. The great benefit of subscribing is that you’ll get new episodes automatically when I release them.

    To help others find the podcast, you can rate and review the podcast on iTunes, or click the Recommend button in your podcast player of choice. Your recommendations help other product managers and innovators find the podcast. It really helps me out and spreads the word. Of course, you can also share the podcast with your friends and colleagues directly.

    I’d ​Love ​To ​Hear ​From ​You!

    Please leave a comment below or drop me an email at nils@nilsdavis.com or on LinkedIn.

    The Secret of Great Social Proof

    One of the main jobs of our rational brain is to justify the decisions of our emotional brain.

    As product managers, the decision that interests us the most is people deciding to buy our product.

    That means we need to understand how to make our product, our positioning, and our marketing appeal to our prospect’s emotional brain.

    In this episode – how to do that, using stories of our customers achievement of personal goals, as the basis for great social proof for our product’s awesomeness.

    Links



    * Alan Cooper’s a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000OZ0N62/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&crea...

    • 15 min
    Episode 65: Tricks and Techniques For Outsmarting Imposter Syndrome (Rerun)

    Episode 65: Tricks and Techniques For Outsmarting Imposter Syndrome (Rerun)

    You are great, you really are!







    Do you suffer from “imposter syndrome” – feeling like at any moment someone’s going to realize you don’t really know what you’re doing, and all your touted accomplishments were luck or chance?







    If so, you’re in good company. Nobel Prize winners, hugely successful actors, entrepreneurs of all types, and others from all walks of life are right there with you. “When are they gonna realize…?” And “If only they knew the truth!”







    Self-doubt is natural, and there are many reasons for it. But we need to keep on working, keep on creating, keep on making the world a better place. And so it’s good to have a few techniques for beating back that fear of being found out (which, of course, is pretty much completely irrational.)







    You’re not alone







    Just to be clear, it’s extremely common to feel like you’re in over your head, unqualified, and that your successes are just flukes. It’s not true – but it’s common.







    For example, here are three articles listing out famous people who feel like imposters. (Thanks to Clement Kao for sending these links!):









    * 12 leaders who have struggled with Imposter Syndrome – from the obvious, like Tom Hanks (I’m kidding!), to the GOAT herself, Serena Williams, to the founder of that little coffee shop down the street – on every street – Howard Schultz.

    * 25 stars who struggle with Imposter Syndrome – including Amy Adams, Ryan Reynolds, and Meryl Streep!

    * 6 more leaders who struggle – Michelle Obama, seriously!?!?









    I think you’ll agree that any of these actors, authors, scientists, creators, athletes, luminaries should have no worries about their legitimacy – and yet they’re just as worried about being found out as you and I might be.







    And for a little taste of Jay Abraham, who does have marketing superpowers, check out this podcast episode with him and another legend, Dan Kennedy or this one from the Science of Success podcast. You can find a lot more about Jay at jayabraham.com, and on dozens of other podcasts.







    How to deal with imposter syndrome







    Well, there are lots of techniques. This episode arose out of a pep talk I had to give myself recently, to help me remember how to beat back my imposter syndrome earlier this month.







    To get the full details, check out the episode, but here are the techniques I share:









    * Compare yourself to others who are succeeding at what you’re doing.

    * Pay attention to your strengths (if we’re using our strengths it doesn’t feel like work – but it looks amazing to others).

    * Test yourself.

    * Learn a little, if you need to fill a gap.

    * Remember you’re not that special – everyone has Imposter Syndrome, so it probably doesn’t really apply to you.

    • 28 min
    116: The Impact of Getting Better at Product Management

    116: The Impact of Getting Better at Product Management

    Why do we care about getting better at product management?

    There’s a mini-industry of people posting on LinkedIn, and writing Medium articles, and doing podcasts about improving your product management skills.

    But why?

    Who cares?

    In this episode, I drill down into this question. It’s an interesting question, not least because no one else seems to be asking it.

    Links



    * Atul Gawande’s TED Talk on getting coaching: long version, short version

    * My podcast episode on product management and strategy

    * Podcast episodes on How To Help Sales Beat Quota, The Business Value of Product Management, The Value Inequality (reducing the prospect’s perception of risk)

    * “Our product management tools are pencils tied to rocks” (article)

    * “5 way product managers can make more money” (article)



    Three two things you can do today



    *  What does one more sale per rep per quarter mean for your company, in terms of revenue and profit? I believe this is one of the metrics, or at least mental models, we should be using to talk about product management effectiveness. How can you influence that number?

    *  If you are hiring a product manager, what is your plan for how the new product management will create $10 millon in incremental revenue in their second year?

    * ??? (If I come up with something I’ll put it here…)



     

     

     

    Why do we care about getting better at product management?

    There’s a mini-industry of people posting on LinkedIn, and writing Medium articles, and doing podcasts about improving your product management skills.

    But why?

    Who cares?

    In this episode, I drill down into this question. It’s an interesting question, not least because no one else seems to be asking it.

    Links



    * Atul Gawande’s TED Talk on getting coaching: long version, short version

    * My podcast episode on product management and strategy

    * Podcast episodes on How To Help Sales Beat Quota, The Business Value of Product Management, The Value Inequality (reducing the prospect’s perception of risk)

    * “Our product management tools are pencils tied to rocks” (article)

    * a href="https://secretpmhandbook.

    • 27 min
    115: The Questions You Ask Can Change Your Life

    115: The Questions You Ask Can Change Your Life

    The Questions You Ask Can Change Your Life

    This episode is a direct follow on to last week’s episode on asking great market discovery questions.

    Last week Craig Davis left a comment on a LinkedIn post that I really liked, and it ties directly into last week’s episode on questions. He mentioned a course from Joshua Miller called “Using Questions to Foster Critical Thinking and Curiosity.”

    And so that’s where this episode takes off.

    Craig said asking good questions has four benefits (among others):



    * Helps you foster critical thinking skills

    * Boosts self-confidence.

    * Enhances creativity.

    * Improves problem solving skills.



    Links



    * Joshua Miller’s website

    * Joshua Miller’s course on “Using Questions to Foster Critical Thinking and Curiosity“

    * Several useful books



    * The Book of Beautiful Questions, by Warren Berger

    * 344 Questions, by Stefan G. Bucher



    * A beautiful hand lettered book of questions and templates for answering, such as



    * Who are your heroes?

    * What do you admire about them?

    * Do they know they’re on your list?

    * Do they care?

    * Does it help you to have heroes?









    * Decisive, by Chip and Dan Heath





    * My episode about decision-making hacks



    My short list of solution discovery questions



    * How do other people solve this problem? Are other apps solving similar problems to this one, and can we copy or emulate what they do?

    * Can we simply automate the current manual solution to this problem? Or do our automation tools give us another way to approach the solution?

    * If we could wave a magic wand, how would we solve this, if there were no technical limits, for example?



     

     

    The Questions You Ask Can Change Your Life

    This episode is a direct follow on to last week’s episode on asking great market discovery questions.

    Last week Craig Davis left a comment on a LinkedIn post that I really liked, and it ties directly into last week’s episode on questions. He mentioned a course from Joshua Miller called “Using Questions to Foster Critical Thinking and Curiosity.”

    And so that’s where this episode takes off.

    Craig said asking good questions has four benefits (among others):



    * Helps you foster critical thinking skills

    * Boosts self-confidence.

    * Enhances creativity.

    * Improves problem solving skills.



    Links



    * Joshua Miller’s website

    * Joshua Miller’s course on “a href="https://www.

    • 12 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
20 Ratings

20 Ratings

Kodis ,

Great for Product managers

Was recently turned onto this show by a colleague. I really enjoyed the recent episodes about “The Smart Sales Method” and the episodes talking about storytelling. Great stuff!

GraceHolKri ,

Nils brings new ideas to things you already think about

If you are a Product manager - in operations - a seller or EVEN in storytelling as many are looking to gain and garner experience in telling your story, your products story, your clients story etc - you will learn here on this podcast apart from simply learning how to do or show up in your role better.

KJO192837 ,

Ep 76 - a must listen!

Just finished episode 76 and it’s a must listen for teams. Psychological safety is so important and Nils gives product team specific examples for how this can break down and how it can be built up. Worth a listen and to share with your teams.

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