I decided to kick off this blog with a timeless piece rather than a more current piece of content:
Ben Horowitz‘s legendary Good Product Manager, Bad Product Manager article.
Amazingly, though written 18(!) years ago, it still holds true and a must read for any Product Manager.
Patrick Lencioni makes a very strong case in The Advantage (which probably merits its own blog post) for overcommunicating and reinforcing clarity in the organization. In my mind, one of things that makes this piece timeless is that it focuses exactly on that – driving clarity, specifically role clarity in this case, and specifically through focusing on good vs. bad behaviors. Values and other more abstract concepts are important, but in the end of the day, if they’re not broken down into a concrete set of behaviors, they lost a lot of their power.
What is your favorite clarity reinforcing piece?
Humans formed organizations to accomplish great things since the dawn of mankind. Companies are just the modern incarnation of that fundamental concept.
But in order to accomplish great things, two critical ingredients are required: the first is great people, the core ingredient of every organization. The second is organizing these people using an effective structure, in the broader term of that word. Organization is the glue that keeps the group together and guides in its path towards accomplishing its mission. It is what enables the whole to be larger than the sum of its parts (as well as attract other great parts). This blog is all about this latter ingredient.
Organization emerges in any group of people, so the cost of not being thoughtful and intentional about it, not aligning it with the mission, can be profound.
Good organization takes into account the fact that the way we work has evolved and continues to evolve. We want our work to drive a greater purpose, not just pay the bills. It relies heavily on having great people to collaborate with, not just on our own skills. We also work in different places and different times of day. Finally, our work is a (big) part of our lives, not an external counterbalance to it.
Good organization drives clarity which guides us in our actions. It defines values that shape behaviors and practices. It clarifies the Why? (purpose) the How? (plan) and the Who? (responsibility). It shapes our decisions (and decision making) on both our business/mission and our group (promotions, rewards, departures).
This blog is driven by content created by people smarter and more innovative than me. All I do is curate, synthesize and add some narrative around their key ideas.