This is a repost of the update on the Kickstarter page for the Cranky Product Management book.
This post is mostly bad news, with a tiny bit of good news.
Bad News First
First, the bad news: Like most 1.0 products created by a completely inexperienced development team, the schedule for this book has officially slipped. Significantly.
The Cranky Product Manager is now estimating May for electronic, June for printed. She apologizes most sincerely about this delay.
There are many reasons why the schedule has slipped, but the main one is that she grossly under-estimated the time needed to write a book that she was proud of and would (hopefully) contribute something just a little new to the field of Product Management.
The Cranky Product Manager sincerely hopes that you will forgive this schedule slip. But if you are furious, she will give you a refund. Just email her; she has not spent your money yet.
Now, for the tiny bit of good news. When the Cranky PM originally pitched this book, she said it would be 75-80% recycled blog posts, 20-25% new content. That was very wrong. There is going to be WAY more new content now. More like 75% new content, 25% old. (Thus, the schedule slip).
Why so much new content? Well, the Cranky PM looked at her old posts and realized that many of them no longer reflect the way she thinks about or does product management anymore. So much has changed in our field in the last 4 years. Plus, she felt the need to tie it all together into a more comprehensive “framework” (for lack of a better word, because she really hates the word “framework”).
New Content Teasers
So, here are some teasers for the new content:
1. Everything the Cranky Product Manager Thought She Knew Was Wrong. Well, maybe not EVERYTHING: the CPM still knows for a fact whose fault the Sequester is and that “Lincoln” should have won the Oscar. But she was, in fact, incorrect about one HUGE thing. Like many Product Managers, for half her career the CPM thought the core competence of Product Management was in gathering and writing requirements/user stories/use cases. Turns out she was wrong. Very wrong.
2. The Cranky One’s First Encounter with a Product Manager. Way back when, the Cranky One was a junior software engineer: hacking code 7 days a week, usually around midnight. So much fun! That is, until she met this MBA-laden twit who called himself a Product Manager. Of HER product, no less. Boy, was HE annoying.
3. The Game of Life: Product Management Edition (yep, a board game)
4. How the Cranky Product Manager ended up in Product Management and why she became cranky. This wicked sordid tale starts in the “accent belt” lodged between Routes 128 and 495, meanders through a variety of professions, bad choices, disastrous professional experiences, educational detours, co-founder spats and lawsuits, and finally ends up in Silicon Valley product work.
5. Market Research on the Cheap. For most of her career, the Cranky PM heard how “real” market research was ridiculously expensive and of too limited value for product work on sophisticated software products. She even wrote a post about it. But SO much has changed in the last 2-3 years, it now seems nuts NOT to do some cheapo market research.
6. How to get non-customers to talk to you without throwing up. Let’s face it, most product managers are (slightly) introverted. If they loved contacting complete strangers and asking them for favors, they’d be in a line of work that pays better (such as Software SALES). This is why the majority of PMs completely neglect to interview market-representative non-customers for market problems, feedback, etc.
Begging strangers to talk to you SUCKS! The Cranky Product Manager would rather purge her inbox, file her taxes, and change the world’s most repugnant diaper. But you gotta do it, so here are some tips.
7. The Biggest Time Wasters for Product Managers. Some of them are obvious (meetings, email) and some are sacred cows (tune in to find out!). Some people will probably get upset.
8. How to get Developers to Listen to You: A WICKED AWESOME FLOWCHART!
9. “Growth Hackers” and Other Douchebags. Is the nouveau term “growth hacker” just a way for self-aggrandizing, medicore coders to become product managers without hating themselves?
10. Steven Blank, Bite Me. Yes, Steven Blank is a genius and the grandfather of the Lean Startup “movement” and all that. He gives out ephiphanies and has profoundly changed the way software startups operate for the better. But he is also a bit of a Product Management Hater, seeing us as “process makers” that are only needed at mature companies. So the Cranky Product Manager hates him back. Just a little.