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Product

This chapter covers lessons on how to improve your product and the value you provide. It’s useful for the CEO and CTO.

Don't half-ass many things

Half-ass one thing many times.

What you don't build is nearly as important

Because that means you didn't spend time on something that isn't useful.

Not everyone's opinion is equal

Don't ask an accountant about routing algorithms.

Observed users personas

When you are observing users interacting with your app, they take on a different persona

You might get customers that you weren't planning on

Listen closely to their feedback because they are actively looking for a solution to a problem.

Two ways of doing design

Help the user do what they want, or make the user do something you want. Try to do mainly the first.

Don't overreact to weak signals

It makes you build poorly thought out and potentially wrong things.

Your team are your users too

They should be given a similar level of attention as your external users.

Separate the trackers for admins

That way main user data won't be polluted, but you'll still have a window into what the admins are doing.

Pick role models and copy common features

Instead of redesigning standard features, pick comparable role models and copy theirs.

Product development is process development as well

Software is a supporting component in a process that accomplishes something useful more efficiently than others.

Think about how new things can affect what you already have

In particular, consider whether new things you're working on can destroy what you've already built.

Consider the complementary interaction

Sometimes creating the opposite interaction can have an even more powerful effect

Each job should have a custom dashboard

That dashboard would show all and only the information and actions that they need.

Understand your value to your users

Make sure that you know all the benefits of what you're selling, not just what you intended.

Learn the correct jargon and use it consistently

To effectively communicate with your team and customers, you must learn the correct jargon and use it consistently.

Simple user permissions are very useful

They're not just about control but also a tool to design a simpler and less error-prone product.

Build a simple flexible dashboard for viewing stats over time

Include the ability to select start and end dates, period lengths, and the number of periods prior and following.