Top 12 Product Management Books You Must Read in 2022
EOY is coming. So these are my top 12 Product Management books, one for each month. Each of them has profoundly changed the way I view the world.
#12 The Professional Product Owner: Leveraging Scrum as a Competitive Advantage
Scrum is obviously not the only framework available, but it should be the default choice for every Product.
Trainers Don McGreal and Ralph Jocham guide you through all facets of envisioning, emerging, and maturing a product with Scrum. You’ll learn how to plan strategy, manage complexity, continuously deliver value, and implement concrete best practices for managing backlogs and releases. Throughout, the author's personal anecdotes help you recognize and overcome obstacles to success, whatever your Scrum or product management experience.
Regardless of divided opinions on the value of certificates, this is simply a must-have for your library.
The best book that describes both Scrum and the role of Scrum Product Owner. It also helped me prepare for PSPO™ III certification.
The Professional Product Owner: Leveraging Scrum as a Competitive Advantage
The Professional Product Owner: Leveraging Scrum as a Competitive Advantage - Kindle edition by Don, McGreal, Jocham…
#11 User Story Mapping
User Story Mapping: Discover the Whole Story, Build the Right Product, by Jeff Patton is a must-read for you. This book details story-mapping techniques and explains why they are important for teams that create products to meet user needs. According to Patton, user story mapping is not about creating a set of written requirements, but a way of thinking. Telling stories through words and pictures builds understanding and helps solve problems for organizations, customers, and users.
The most important job we have is to focus on the outcome and the impact of the products we are creating. Taking a slightly philosophical view of the importance of project outcomes, Patton writes, “The truth is, your job is to change the world”.
As a Product Manager, you will not run away from working with requirements, even if someone else writes them down. You absolutely need to know these techniques.
User Story Mapping: Discover the Whole Story, Build the Right Product
User Story Mapping: Discover the Whole Story, Build the Right Product [Patton, Jeff, Economy, Peter] on Amazon.com…
#10 Agile 2: The Next Iteration of Agile
Most Agile transformations struggle. According to an Allied Market Research study, “63% of respondents stated the failure of Agile implementation in their organizations.” The problems with Agile start at the top of most organizations with executive leadership not getting what Agile is or even knowing the difference between success and failure in Agile.
Agile transformation is a journey, and most of that journey consists of people learning and trying new approaches in their own work. An Agile organization can make use of coaches and training to improve their chances of success. But even then, failure remains because many Agile ideas are oversimplified or interpreted in an extreme way, and many elements essential for success are missing. Coupled with other ideas that have been dogmatically forced on teams, such as “Agile team rooms”, and “an overall inertia and resistance to change in the Agile community,” the Agile movement is ripe for change since its birth twenty years ago.
“Agile 2” represents the work of fifteen experienced Agile experts, distilled into Agile 2: The Next Iteration of Agile by seven members of the team. Agile 2 values these pairs of attributes when properly balanced: thoughtfulness and prescription; outcomes and outputs, individuals and teams; business and technical understanding; individual empowerment and good leadership; adaptability and planning.
Niche, I’m not sure why, but definitely worth reading, as it addresses the most common Agile problems and challenges.
Agile 2: The Next Iteration of Agile
Amazon.com: Agile 2: The Next Iteration of Agile: 9781119799276: Berg, Cliff, Cagle, Kurt, Cooney, Lisa, Fewell…
#9 Introduction to Disciplined Agile Delivery
Introduction to Disciplined Agile Delivery provides a quick overview of how agile software development works from beginning to end. It describes the Disciplined Agile Delivery (DAD) process decision framework and then works through a case study describing a typical agile team’s experiences adopting a disciplined agile approach. The book describes how the team develops the first release of a mission-critical application while working in a legacy enterprise environment. It describes their experiences from beginning to end, starting with their initial team initiation efforts through construction and finally to deploying the solution into production. It also describes how the team stays together for future releases, overviewing their process improvement efforts from their Scrum-based beginnings through to a lean continuous delivery approach that fits in with their organization’s evolving DevOps strategy.
The DAD framework is a hybrid of existing methods such as Scrum, Kanban, Agile Modeling, SAFe, Extreme Programming, Agile Data, Unified Process, and many others. DAD provides the flexibility to use various approaches and plugs the gaps not addressed by mainstream agile methods. In a nutshell, DAD is “pragmatic agile.” DAD describes proven strategies to adapt and scale your agile initiatives to suit the unique realities of your enterprise without having to figure it all out by yourself.
I disagree with some statements (like value of SAFe). Nevertheless,
It is definitely worth learning about ready-made, practical techniques, and patterns. Many of them can add great value to your Products.
Introduction to Disciplined Agile Delivery - Second Edition
Introduction to Disciplined Agile Delivery - Second Edition [Ambler, Scott, Lines, Mark] on Amazon.com. *FREE* shipping…
#8 Sprint: How to Solve Big Problems and Test New Ideas in Just Five Days
From three design partners at Google Ventures, a unique five-day process for solving tough problems using design, prototyping, and testing ideas with customers.
The startups that Google Ventures invests in face big questions every day: Where’s the most important place to focus your effort, and how do you start? What will your ideas look like in real life? How many meetings and discussions does it take before you can be sure you have the right solution to a problem? Business owners and investors want their companies and the people who lead them to be equipped to answer these questions — and quickly. And now there’s a sure-fire way to solve their problems and test solutions: the sprint.
While working at Google, designer Jake Knapp created a unique problem-solving method that he coined a “design sprint” — a five-day process to help companies answer crucial questions. His ‘sprints’ were used on everything from Google Search to Chrome to Google X. When he moved to Google Ventures, he joined Braden Kowitz and John Zeratsky, both designers and partners there who worked on products like YouTube and Gmail. Together Knapp, Zeratsky, and Kowitz have run over 100 sprints with their portfolio companies. They’ve seen firsthand how sprints can overcome challenges in all kinds of companies: healthcare, fitness, finance, retailers, and more.
The design sprint is a fantastic idea for dealing with more complexity, especially at the beginning of your journey.
Sprint: How to Solve Big Problems and Test New Ideas in Just Five Days
Sprint: How to Solve Big Problems and Test New Ideas in Just Five Days [Knapp, Jake, Zeratsky, John, Kowitz, Braden…
#7 Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action
Why are some people and organizations more innovative, more influential, and more profitable than others? Why do some command greater loyalty from customers and employees alike? Even among the successful, why are so few able to repeat their success over and over?
People like Martin Luther King Jr., Steve Jobs, and the Wright Brothers might have little in common, but they all started with why. It was their natural ability to start with why that enabled them to inspire those around them and to achieve remarkable things.
In studying the leaders who’ve had the greatest influence in the world, Simon Sinek discovered that they all think, act, and communicate in the exact same way — and it’s the complete opposite of what everyone else does. Sinek calls this powerful idea The Golden Circle, and it provides a framework upon which organizations can be built, movements can be lead, and people can be inspired. And it all starts with WHY.
Any organization can explain what it does; some can explain how they do it; but very few can clearly articulate why. WHY is not money or profit — those are always results. WHY does your organization exist? WHY does it do the things it does? WHY do customers really buy from one company or another? WHY are people loyal to some leaders, but not others?
Starting with WHY works in big business and small business, in the nonprofit world and in politics. Those who start with WHY never manipulate, they inspire. And the people who follow them don’t do so because they have to; they follow because they want to.
Drawing on a wide range of real-life stories, Sinek weaves together a clear vision of what it truly takes to lead and inspire.
This book is for anyone who wants to inspire others or who wants to find someone to inspire them.
Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action
Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action [Sinek, Simon] on Amazon.com. *FREE* shipping on…
#6 Business Model Generation: A Handbook for Visionaries, Game Changers, and Challengers
Business Model Generation is a handbook for visionaries, game-changers, and challengers striving to defy outmoded business models and design tomorrow’s enterprises. If your organization needs to adapt to harsh new realities, but you don’t yet have a strategy that will get you out in front of your competitors, you need Business Model Generation.
Co-created by 470 “Business Model Canvas” practitioners from 45 countries, the book features a beautiful, highly visual, 4-color design that takes powerful strategic ideas and tools, and makes them easy to implement in your organization. It explains the most common Business Model patterns, based on concepts from leading business thinkers, and helps you reinterpret them for your own context. You will learn how to systematically understand, design, and implement a game-changing business model — or analyze and renovate an old one. Along the way, you’ll understand at a much deeper level your customers, distribution channels, partners, revenue streams, costs, and your core value proposition.
Business Model Generation features practical innovation techniques used today by leading consultants and companies worldwide, including 3M, Ericsson, Capgemini, Deloitte, and others. Designed for doers, it is for those ready to abandon outmoded thinking and embrace new models of value creation: for executives, consultants, entrepreneurs, and leaders of all organizations.
Business Model Generation is simply the go-to book for developing a business model.
Business Model Generation: A Handbook for Visionaries, Game Changers, and Challengers (The…
Amazon.com: Business Model Generation: A Handbook for Visionaries, Game Changers, and Challengers (The Strategyzer…
#5 Inspired: How to Create Tech Products Customers Love
The basic premise of Inspired is that the best tech companies create products in a manner very different from how most companies create products. The goal of the book is to share the techniques of the best companies. This book is aimed primarily at Product Managers working on technology-powered products. That includes the hundreds of “tech companies” like Google, Facebook, Amazon, Twitter, and the like, as well as the thousands of companies moving to leverage technology (financial companies, media companies, retailers, manufacturers, nearly every industry). Inspired covers companies from early-stage start-ups to large, established companies. The products might be consumer products or devices, business services for small businesses to enterprises, internal tools, and developer platforms.
Inspired is secondarily aimed at the designers, engineers, user researchers and data scientists that work closely with the product managers on product teams at these same companies.
Inspired is a well-written, thorough, and down-to-earth work covering all aspects of product management at software companies.
Inspired: How to Create Tech Products Customers Love (Silicon Valley Product Group)
Inspired: How to Create Tech Products Customers Love (Silicon Valley Product Group) [Cagan, Marty] on Amazon.com…
#4 Empowered: Ordinary People, Extraordinary Products
What is it about the top tech product companies such as Amazon, Apple, Google, Netflix, and Tesla that enables their record of consistent innovation?
Most people think it’s because these companies are somehow able to find and attract a level of talent that makes this innovation possible. But the real advantage these companies have is not so much who they hire, but rather how they enable their people to work together to solve hard problems and create extraordinary products.
The goal of Empowered is to provide you, as a leader of product management, product design, or engineering, with everything you’ll need to create just such an environment.
A natural companion to the bestseller Inspired, Empowered tackles head-on the reason why most companies fail to truly leverage the potential of their people to innovate: product leadership.
While the Inspired book focused on product development techniques, Empowered focused on people and organization.
Empowered: Ordinary People, Extraordinary Products (Silicon Valley Product Group)
Amazon.com: Empowered: Ordinary People, Extraordinary Products (Silicon Valley Product Group): 9781119691297: Cagan…
#3 What Customers Want: Using Outcome-Driven Innovation to Create Breakthrough Products and Services
A world-renowned innovation guru explains practices that result in breakthrough innovations. Ulwick’s outcome-driven programs bring discipline and predictability to the often random process of innovation.
In a book that challenges everything you have learned about being customer driven, internationally acclaimed innovation leader Anthony Ulwick reveals the secret weapon behind some of the most successful companies of recent years. Known as outcome-driven innovation, this revolutionary approach to new product and service creation transforms innovation from a nebulous art into a rigorous science from which randomness and uncertainty are eliminated.
Based on more than 200 studies spanning more than seventy companies and twenty-five industries, Ulwick contends that, when it comes to innovation, the traditional methods companies use to communicate with customers are the root cause of chronic waste and missed opportunity. In What Customers Want, Ulwick demonstrates that all popular qualitative research methods yield well-intentioned but unfitting and dreadfully misleading information that serves to derail the innovation process. Rather than accepting customer inputs such as needs, benefits, specifications, and solutions, Ulwick argues that researchers should silence the literal voice of the customer and focus on the metrics that customers use to measure success when executing the jobs, tasks or activities they are trying to get done. Using these customer desired outcomes as inputs into the innovation process eliminates much of the chaos and variability that typically derails innovation initiatives.
With the same profound insight, simplicity, and uncommon sense that propelled The Innovator’s Solution to worldwide acclaim, this paradigm-changing book details an eight-step approach that uses outcome-driven thinking to dramatically improve every aspect of the innovation process — from segmenting markets and identifying opportunities to creating, evaluating, and positioning breakthrough concepts.
This is one of those books I definitely should have read many years ago. If I’d have to summarize this book in one sentence I’d use Henry Ford’s famous quote: “If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses”.
What Customers Want: Using Outcome-Driven Innovation to Create Breakthrough Products and Services
What Customers Want: Using Outcome-Driven Innovation to Create Breakthrough Products and Services [Anthony Ulwick] on…
#2 Blue Ocean Strategy: How To Create Uncontested Market Space And Make The Competition Irrelevant
This international bestseller challenges everything you thought you knew about the requirements for strategic success.
Since the dawn of the industrial age, companies have engaged in head-to-head competition in search of sustained, profitable growth. They have fought for competitive advantage, battled over market share, and struggled for differentiation. Yet, as this influential and immensely popular book shows, these hallmarks of competitive strategy are not the way to create profitable growth in the future.
In the international bestseller Blue Ocean Strategy, W. Chan Kim and Renee Mauborgne argue that cutthroat competition results in nothing but a bloody red ocean of rivals fighting over a shrinking profit pool. Based on a study of 150 strategic moves (spanning more than 100 years across 30 industries), the authors argue that lasting success comes not from battling competitors, but from creating “blue oceans” — untapped new market spaces ripe for growth. Such strategic moves, which the authors call “value innovation,” create powerful leaps in value that often render rivals obsolete for more than a decade.
Blue Ocean Strategy presents a systematic approach to making the competition irrelevant and outlines principles and tools any company can use to create and capture its own blue oceans. A landmark work that upends traditional thinking about strategy, this bestselling business book charts a bold new path to winning the future.
A red ocean symbolizes blood in the water. The Blue Ocean Strategy is a book about finding your niche within a niche so you can stay competitive and grow.
By W. Chan Kim - Blue Ocean Strategy: How To Create Uncontested Market Space And Make The…
By W. Chan Kim - Blue Ocean Strategy: How To Create Uncontested Market Space And Make The Competition Irrelevant on…
#1 The Lean Startup: How Today’s Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses
Most startups fail. But many of those failures are preventable. The Lean Startup is a new approach being adopted across the globe, changing the way companies are built and new products are launched.
Eric Ries defines a startup as an organization dedicated to creating something new under conditions of extreme uncertainty. This is just as true for one person in a garage or a group of seasoned professionals in a Fortune 500 boardroom. What they have in common is a mission to penetrate that fog of uncertainty to discover a successful path to a sustainable business.
The Lean Startup approach fosters companies that are both more capital efficient and that leverage human creativity more effectively. Inspired by lessons from lean manufacturing, it relies on “validated learning,” rapid scientific experimentation, as well as a number of counter-intuitive practices that shorten product development cycles, measure actual progress without resorting to vanity metrics, and learn what customers really want. It enables a company to shift directions with agility, altering plans inch by inch, minute by minute.
Rather than wasting time creating elaborate business plans, The Lean Startup offers entrepreneurs — in companies of all sizes — a way to test their vision continuously, to adapt and adjust before it’s too late. Ries provides a scientific approach to creating and managing successful startups in an age when companies need to innovate more than ever.
It is a core business book that revolutionized the business startup environment over this last decade. Eric Ries stripped everything down to the core basic principles of being lean and agile in response to customer feedback.