Skip to main content
The Accidental Product Manager

The Accidental Product Manager

By Jim Anderson
Managing a product is not just a business, it’s a science. Nobody knows more about the science of product management than Dr. Jim Anderson.

As Dr. Anderson says “I don’t embrace excuses from product managers about why their products are not successful, I embrace solutions.”

Over the last 25 years, Dr. Anderson has transformed failing products worldwide. Dr. Anderson will turn these money pits into money makers. Welcome to the premier blog for learning how to develop, launch, and manage wildly successful products.

For a product to be successful, it takes an entire company working together.
Listen on
Where to listen
Apple Podcasts Logo

Apple Podcasts

Breaker Logo

Breaker

Google Podcasts Logo

Google Podcasts

Overcast Logo

Overcast

Pocket Casts Logo

Pocket Casts

RadioPublic Logo

RadioPublic

Spotify Logo

Spotify

Stitcher Logo

Stitcher

Product Managers Learn To Deal With Customer Outrage
So what’s up with your customers?  Why are they so touchy? It sure seems  like customers can very quickly become upset about something that wasn’t  covered in your product development, definition and then fly off the  handle and be in the streets waving signs and talking with television  stations about how bad you are all in the space of a couple of hours. It  has become clear that we product managers are now living in a different age and time than we used to. What we need to learn how to do is to deal with customers who have for some reason become very, very angry with either our product or our company.  When this happens, just exactly what is a product manager supposed to do?
09:10
September 28, 2020
Product Managers Take Steps To Protect Their Customers
Product managers know that making our customers fall in love with our  stores, our staff, and our brand is a critical part of our ability to be  successful.  This is why over the past few years there has been a big  push by product managers to find ways to pamper our customers.  With the arrival of the Covid-19 pandemic, we now have to take a step back, change our product development definition, and find ways to keep our staff safe while still trying to connect with our customers.
08:28
September 21, 2020
Fast Food Product Managers Make It Through A Pandemic
I think that we can all agree that the Covid-19 pandemic has been a  very, very bad thing.  Just about every business was shut for a period of  time and every product manager had their carefully created product  development definition disrupted by the events that were caused by the pandemic. However, things are slowly starting to get better even as the pandemic is still with us.  Product managers  who work in the fast food business are among the ones who seem to be getting back on their feet the fastest.
08:31
September 14, 2020
Product Managers Discover That Proximity Really Matters
The arrival of the Covid-19 pandemic has resulted in a lot of different  changes that have swept through many industries.  Many have had to shut  their doors and even more have lost customers as people have been forced  to stay at home. However, out of all of this madness, there have been some companies that have actually been able to use the pandemic to prosper.  One such firm is in the business of connecting people who may live next door to each other.
06:56
August 31, 2020
Starbucks Product Managers Deal With The Covid-19 Virus
Let’s face it, everyone has been impacted by the arrival of the Covid-19  pandemic.  Even those stores that you would have thought could have made  it through an upheaval like this seem to have been impacted. A good  example of this is Starbucks.  The Starbucks product managers, like everyone else, have had to close  their stores for a while.  Now that they are once again able to reopen  them, they need to revisit their product development definition and find new ways to generate money for the company in a world that has completely changed.
08:16
August 24, 2020
Product Managers And The Problem With Cannabis
I can only speak for myself, but if I was a product manager who was put  in charge of a marijuana product, I would be very, very happy.  Think  about it, what does every product manager want: we want our customers to  want our product. When it comes to the product development definition  for marijuana, there is no question that it is a very popular product.  In fact, with the recent change in laws that has made marijuana legal for a number of different activities,  more and more new products that have marijuana in them are being  created and introduced. One of the biggest growth areas is drinks that  have been infused with cannabis (marijuana).  There is only one problem  that the product managers of these products will have to deal with: cannabis tastes really, really bad.
09:55
August 17, 2020
Pet Store Product Managers Struggle To Find The Love
I have a dog. I suspect that many of you have pets also.  I can only  speak for myself, but I sure seem to spend a lot of money on food,  leashes, toys, clothes, etc. for my dog. You would think with this need  to keep buying things in order to take care of my pet, pet store product  managers would have a very easy life. It turns out that you would be  wrong.  So what’s going on here – why are pet store product managers struggling and do they need to change their product development definition?
08:30
August 10, 2020
Alternative Meat Product Managers Make Plans To Win More Customers
So how do you feel about eating meat?  For that matter, how do you feel about eating meat alternatives that are made from plants?  Plant-based meat product managers are racing to update their product  development definition and fill in for missing cuts of traditional meat  in supermarket meat cases, after the coronavirus disrupted operations at  meatpacking plants.  How are product managers going to seize this  once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to make their products more successful?
06:49
August 3, 2020
Product Managers Try To Learn Covid-19 Lessons From Hermès Handbags
Just in case you didn’t know it, Hermès is a company that makes ladies’  purses among other things.  Hermès is a French high fashion luxury goods  manufacturer established in 1837. It specializes in leather, lifestyle  accessories, home furnishings, perfumery, jewelry, watches and  ready-to-wear. Just like every other business in the world, the arrival  of the Covid-19 virus has affected Hermès. Their customers have had to  stay home just like everyone else and have been unable to go out and  shop for Hermès products.  How has this impacted Hermès?
08:50
July 27, 2020
Product Managers Prepare For The Future Of Fast Food
Restaurant product managers are facing one of the toughest times that  they have ever had to deal with. The arrival of the Covid-19 virus has  changed everything for them.  Most restaurants have had to shut down for a  while and customers have been told to stay at home and not go out. Many  restaurants are reporting that their sales have fallen by up to 48%  from a year ago. However, not everyone is suffering. In fact, business  is booming for some restaurants.  What can product managers learn from  the changes that are sweeping through the restaurant industry?
07:55
July 20, 2020
Product Managers Start To Deal With The Virtual Assistant Problem
So when you walk into the space that you live in, what’s the first thing  that you do?  For many of us, the first thing that we do is to shout out  “Hey, Alexa turn on my music” or “Hey Google, turn on the lights in the kitchen.” These virtual assistants who are always there waiting for our next  command to them have become a part of our lives. As powerful as they  are, the product managers who make them understand a dirty little  secret.  They’ve started to hit the wall in terms of what they can do for us.
08:25
July 13, 2020
Starbucks Product Managers Try To Deliver Success
Let’s face it: that Starbucks coffee sure does taste good.  You know it, I  know it, and all of those people who are currently standing in line  waiting for their next cup of coffee know it also. Since it is so  popular, it may come as somewhat of a surprise to you to learn that Starbucks is currently dealing with slowing foot traffic in their stores – not as many people are visiting them these days. At the same time, a  lot of other companies have realized that people are willing to pay a  lot of money for good coffee and so competition in the coffee shop  business has shot up.  The  product managers at Starbucks are going to have to get creative and  make changes to their product development definition if they want to  keep their profits up.
07:09
July 10, 2020
Product Managers Start To Use AI In Health Care Products
If you are a product manager and you really want to make your life  complicated, then what you should do is decide to develop a health care  product.  This is going to make your life complicated in a bunch of  different ways. First off, any product that you create is going to have  to be approved by federal regulators before people can use it to solve  health care issues. Next, you’re going to have to find a way for  people’s health care insurance to pay for it. Somewhat amazingly, there are still some product managers who choose to work in this market.   These product managers now think that changing their product development definition and adding artificial intelligence (AI) to their products just might be what they need to do.
07:44
June 22, 2020
How Do Jewelry Product Managers Deal With A Virus?
Just imagine if you were a product manager for a jewelry store.   Your business would rely on people passing by, being drawn in by  something that you had in the window, talking with a sales person,  trying jewelry on, and then, with a little luck, buying something. Then  the Covid-19 virus strikes and all of your customers start to stay at  home – nobody is walking by any more.  What’s a product manager to do?
06:45
June 15, 2020
How The Coronavirus Is Affecting Alcohol And What To Do About It
Let’s face it: the Covid-19 virus has changed just about everything in  our lives.  Product managers for liquor have seen a dramatic change in  their lives as bars and restaurants have had to close down. Customers  who might have drunk their products at home have all been quarantined.   As you can well imagine, this has been a big setback and the plans that  these product managers might have had for the rest of the year have had  to be shelved and new plans are quickly being put together.
07:30
June 8, 2020
How Can Restaurant Product Managers Make More Food?
With the arrival of Covid-19, the world of restaurants has been turned  upside down.  Restaurant product managers are scrambling to change their  product development definition and find ways to keep the doors (virtually) open even as their customers are being urged to stay home.  The good news, if indeed there is any, is that customers still like the  food that restaurants serve and they would like to eat it. In our  modern society with services such as Uber Eats, DoorDash,  and Grub Hub home bound customers can simply order restaurant food  online and have it delivered to them.  However, this is starting to cause  some problems for the restaurants themselves.
06:34
June 1, 2020
Papa John’s Product Managers Look For New Ways To Be Successful
Can you think of any job that would be more delicious than being a  product manager for a pizza chain?  The product managers at the Papa John’s pizza company probably thought that they had the best job in the world for a very long time. Then things started to change for them.  It seems as though almost overnight what had been a pretty easy product manager job suddenly became very difficult.  What  do the Papa John’s product managers need to do to change their product  development definition and turn things around for the company?
07:20
May 18, 2020
How A Product Manager Can Avoid Being Fired
Ok, so there really is no pride here: I’ve been fired.  Not only have I been fired, but it turns out that I’ve been fired a lot.  Like a total of seven times. Now, in my own defense I’ve worked for 14  different companies, but seven is still a very big number. I must  confess that I really don’t quite know why I’ve been fired so much. As  my sister has told me, you know there is one thing in common about all  of the jobs that you’ve been fired from – you! I’m a nice guy. I don’t  drink, do drugs, I show up for work on time and work the whole day, I  get along with people, etc. And yet I still seem to keep getting fired.  The good news for you from the flaming car wreck that is my career is  that I’ve learned a lot about how to avoid getting fired (don’t do what I  did).  Let’s talk about what you need to do as product manager in order  to hold on to your job.
06:09
May 11, 2020
Can Chinese Product Managers Make Tiny Cars Successful?
So I really enjoy driving my car.  I get in, fire it up, hear the rumble  of that motor (ok, so it’s a 4-cylinder motor – it’s not that much of a  rumble), I pull out into the street, press the gas petal to the floor,  and I’m off! Well, it turns out that over in China, they love their cars  too. However, electric cars are currently all the rage and it turns out  that the best-selling electric cars are not what you might think that  they would be. In my country, the U.S., the best-selling electric cars  are the wonders of modern technology created by Tesla – big cars that have every convenience that you could possibly think of. In China, it’s almost the opposite. The best-selling electric cars have a unique product development definition and are tiny and come with almost nothing.  What are these Chinese product managers up to?
07:40
May 4, 2020
Product Managers Learn To Deal With Two-Day Shipping
As product managers, it is our responsibility to use our product  development definition to create products that our customers will want.   With a little luck, they’ll discover our products, decide to buy them,  and then place an order. You might think that a product manager’s job  would be over at this point in time. However, the good folks at Amazon  have succeeded in making our lives just a little bit more difficult. The  Amazon Prime program provides Amazon customers with free two-day shipping for anything that they order from Amazon.  What this means is the product managers are starting to discover that  their customers have been programmed to expect to be able to receive  anything that they order within two days.  Are you ready to deliver on  this expectation?
07:06
April 27, 2020
Product Managers Prepare For Driverless Pizza Delivery Cars
Could there be any better job than being a product manager at a pizza company?   I mean, you have the ability to fully understand your product (and eat  it to!), you know who your competition is, and your customers clearly  want and desire your product. What more could a product manager ask for? Oh, perhaps more market share? Pizza companies have been locked in a  battle for market share since the market was invented.  As the future  starts to arrive, they are now looking at a game changer that could  change their product development definition if they can get it correct,  this just might give them the advantage that they have been looking for:  driverless cars.
06:58
April 20, 2020
Product Managers Get Familiar With Microbrands
As product managers, the one thing that I believe that most of us feel that we have a pretty good handle on is how new products are created and introduced.   I mean, we’ve worked at companies where this was probably part of our  job and so we’ve had to sit through all of the planning meetings, review  designs, work with sales, and find ways to get the product actually  manufactured.  However, in our constantly changing world, things are once  again changing and how new products get introduced is being replaced  with microbrands.
06:43
April 13, 2020
Dunkin Product Managers Take On Starbucks Product Managers
So I’m not sure if you are aware of it, but it turns out that all of the  people in the world can be divided into one of two different groups.   These groups consist of people who like to get their morning coffee from  Dunkin and people who like to get their morning coffee from Starbucks. Traditionally once you’ve picked which group you want to belong to, you will never change your mind.   The product managers at Dunkin have decided that they want to grow  their market and so they are preparing to change their product  development definition and do battle with the Starbucks product managers  in order to see if they can win some more customers over to their way  of doing coffee.
07:12
March 30, 2020
I How I Got Fired From My Product Manager Job
So before we dive into my tale of woe, let’s first make sure that we are  all on the same page at least in terms of vocabulary.  When you lose a  job, there are a couple of different ways to have this happen. One is  that you get laid off. This generally happens when the company is forced  to reduce its workforce because they’ve run into financial problems or a  contract got canceled or they are closing a branch office. Multiple  people generally get laid off at the same time. You get the point. When you get fired, it’s a lot more personal.  Everyone else is still going to have their job but you are not. You  have been told that you are no longer wanted and you need to pack your  things up and get out.  This is what happened to me. I got fired.
10:44
March 23, 2020
Can Product Managers Market Furnished Housing Rentals?
So where do you live today?  The answer for a lot of us is in an  apartment. Now let’s go back and think about what it took to get you  into that apartment. First, of course, you had to find the apartment.  Then you had to find a way to get the stuff that you owned to the  apartment. Then it had to be put into the apartment. Finally, you spent  the next weeks, months, years unpacking and putting everything in the  place where it belonged. Wow – what an effort that was!  If only there was an easier way to go about this moving into an apartment thing…
07:59
March 17, 2020
How Do Bookseller Product Managers Market Food Products?
We should all have such problems.  The product managers over at that  very, very successful company called Amazon are now facing a new  challenge. A while back Amazon paid US$13.5B to purchase the high-end grocery store chain called Whole Foods.  The Amazon product managers are now under the gun to change their  product development definition and apply what they have been able to do  so well for selling books and home goods to food.  Just exactly how should they go about doing this?
07:24
March 9, 2020
Product Managers Deal With The Microsoft Office Problem
How about a quick show of hands: who uses Microsoft Office every day?  Hmm, I believe that I see just about everyone’s hands in the air. Let’s  face it, outside of the Microsoft Windows operating system, Microsoft Office is just about the most popular piece of software out there.  Sure, there are some competitors such as Google Office and Libra  Office; however, the biggest share of the market is owned by Microsoft  and has been for roughly the past 30 years or so.  So why are the Microsoft product managers so slow to make improvements to Microsoft Office?
06:58
March 2, 2020
Product Managers Try To Determine If Smaller Is Really Better
Just imagine if you were a product manager for Target stores.  You would  be responsible for the success of a brand that has over 1,800 stores  sprinkled throughout suburban areas everywhere. However, you would have  recently bumped into some problems. Sales at your stores have just taken a dip for the first time in a couple of years.  It’s starting to look like you need to take some steps to change things  up and get more people to come to your stores if you want your product  manager resume to keep looking good.  What are you going to have to do as  a product manager to get things back on track?
06:34
February 24, 2020
Can GE’s Product Managers Find A Way To Get A Charge Out Of Batteries?
We all know the company General Electric – at one point in time, they  seemed to make just about everything that you could buy that could be  plugged in.  These days GE is playing a game of catch up with other  companies. GE wants to be a player in the growing business of large-scale electricity storage.  The problem that their product managers are facing is that other  companies such as Tesla and Siemens already have a strong position in  this new business  Looks like they are going to have to update their  product development definition and come up with a new product if they want to be competitive.
05:11
February 17, 2020
Is It Time For Product Managers To Get Out The TV Dinners?
So let’s picture a typical evening for you.  You get home from work, sort  through the mail, change clothes, click on the TV, and then you start  to think about dinner. Assuming that you have not gone crazy and called  up Uber Eats to deliver you some restaurant food, you are going to be on  the hook to create a meal for yourself.  If you have some chef skills this won’t be all that hard to do;  however, if you are like the rest of us you are going to be searching  around for something to eat. One  handy solution that a lot of us often go to is the so called “TV  Dinner” – a frozen meal that has all of the important parts of a dinner  such as vegetables, meat, and a desert.  Is this a meal that product managers could once again make popular?
06:05
February 10, 2020
How Can Product Managers Convince Millennials To Buy Jewelry?
Being a product manager for a high-end jewelry company would be a pretty  good job to have.  You really would not have to sell all that much of  your product in order to have a good year. However, these product  managers have started to run into a problem. It turns out that the next  generation of jewelry buyers, the millennials,  just don’t seem to be into the pretty, sparkly, things that you wear  every once-in-a-while. These are the things that their parents and  grandparents used to buy.  What’s a product manager to do?
07:18
February 3, 2020
Product Managers At Tech Giants Try To Not Anger Banks With New Products
Just imagine if you were a product manager at one of the big technology  firms out there (Microsoft, Amazon, Google, Oracle, etc.).  You would  always be under pressure to change your product development definition  and come up with new and different ways for the company to make money.  You’d probably look at all of the different markets that your company’s  resources could be applied to looking for one where you could generate  the most money. In the end, you’d probably always come back to the world of finance – that’s where your company’s big computers could do a lot of good.   However, what would you do if your biggest customers were already there?
07:57
January 27, 2020
Coke Product Managers Seek New Tastes
Ah, to be a product manager at Coke-Cola.  Would that not be the best job  ever? Coke is a huge company, it has a very large market share, and  every customer that you might ever want to capture has already heard  about about your product. What more could a product manager ask for?  Coke has been focused on creating sugary drinks even as the rest of the world started to shift its drinking habits to water and healthier options.  Coke’s sales were starting to stall and this called for a change in  their product development definition.  What could their product managers  do to turn things around?
06:22
January 13, 2020
Product Managers Want To Know What’s Gone Wrong At UPS
When it comes time to ship a product to a customer, product managers in  the U.S. know that they have three different options: the Postal  Service, FedEx, and UPS.  FedEx and UPS generally cost more, but they are fiercely competitive and if you hand  your package off to them, you know that it will reach where it is  supposed to go.  However, it turns out that UPS has been running into  some problems and their product managers are going to have to get creative to solve them.
07:36
January 6, 2020
Food Giant Product Managers Place Small Bets
There are exciting product manager jobs and then there are the product manager jobs at the really big food companies.   Yes, yes – the good news is that you’ll probably be a relatively  successful product manager no matter what you do simply because the big  food companies provide us with the products that we all know and love.  However, because of the sameness of the job, there is a good chance that  this will not be the most exciting product manager job out there.   However, lately things have been changing and this job is starting to become a lot more cutting edge…
06:45
December 16, 2019
Product Managers Ponder How To Market An Unwanted Product
Sigh. As product managers we all would like to think of ourselves as  being the person who is in charge of a cool product like Facebook or the  iPhone.  However, the world is filled with other products that need the  help of product managers and so who’s to say what product we will  eventually be put in charge of? One product that perhaps none of us would look forward to managing would be adult diapers.  I mean, nobody really wants to buy this product, right?  What’s the best  way for a product manager to deal with a product that people need, but  don’t want?
07:29
December 9, 2019
Product Managers Race To Provide One-Day Delivery
As product managers, we all spend our time trying to better understand  what our customers really want.  This can be a tricky thing to do. We  need to understand what motivates our customers in order to better  understand how we can provide them with the products that they will be  willing to buy. Product managers at some of the largest companies out  there, Amazon, Walmart, and Target, have decided that being able to  deliver products that customers have ordered the next day is the best  way to attract more customers.  Just exactly how are they going to go  about doing this?
06:34
December 2, 2019
How Can Starbucks Product Managers Stop Things From Slowing Down?
Imagine for a moment that you were a product manager working at  Starbucks.  The company is growing, everyone likes your product, you  would be on top of the world. In fact, Starbucks has opened over 2,000  cafes in the U.S. over the past three years. The result of this rapid  growth has been that you can find a Starbucks just about anywhere.  However, the downside to all of this growth is that their traffic growth is starting to slow.  What is a Starbucks product manager to do?
06:58
November 18, 2019
Product Managers Want People To Eat At Home
Quick quiz: where have you been eating your meals lately?  Perhaps a  better version of this question would be: how many times have you eaten  at home lately? If you are like most of us, your answer is going to be  mixed. Yeah, you might grab a breakfast at home, but do you take your  lunch to work? How about dinner – do you eat at home or go out?  Since you are not eating at home as much as you should, you are starting to cause problems for packaged food product managers.
07:29
November 11, 2019
Wendy’s Product Managers Take On Breakfast
So here’s a quick question for you: what’s the most important meal of  the day?  If you said breakfast, then the product managers at Wendy’s would agree with you. Wendy’s has decided to once again make an attempt  to expand their product development definition and start to offer  breakfast items in an effort to attract more customers to their stores  in the morning.  The market for breakfast foods is a crowded market and  the Wendy’s product managers may be up against some stiff competition: how can they be successful?
06:14
November 4, 2019
How Can Car Rental Product Managers Deal With Upstarts?
When you travel and you need transportation at the other end of your  trip, what do you do?  If you are like most of us, when you are buying  your airplane ticket and making your hotel reservation you go ahead and  call up an established rental car company and make a reservation. When  you fly into the airport, you take the car rental bus to the car rental  lot, pick up your car and you drive away. That’s all fine, but that is  so old school.  It turns our that there is a new way to get around and it’s changing the rental car product development definition and  causing headaches for established rental car company product managers.
07:43
October 28, 2019
Amazon Product Managers Look For Another Way To Score
The Amazon product managers have a real problem on their hands.  They are  in charge of one of the more popular brands in the world and the  creation of their Amazon Prime service has only made the company even  more popular. However, as we are all aware of, what you did for me  yesterday is nice, but what I’m really interested in is what you will be  doing for me tomorrow. The Amazon product managers are under a lot of  pressure to continue to update their product development definition and keep growing the brand.   One part of the world where Amazon would like to become bigger is  Britain. What the product managers need is a way to hook more customers.
08:09
October 21, 2019
Amazon Product Managers Have Grocery Store Dreams
The product managers at Amazon have a big problem on their hands.  The  company, which is already huge, wants to keep on growing. What this  means for the product managers is that they always have to be looking for new businesses that Amazon can expand into.   They think that they may have come up with one that could, over time,  make a substantial contribution to the company’s bottom line: a new line of grocery stores.
06:01
October 14, 2019
How Indian Product Managers Do Battle With Retail Goliaths
Retail giants Amazon and Walmart really, really want to start selling a  great deal in India.  In fact, they are willing to spend billions to set  up shop there. However, their success is not guaranteed.  It turns out that they are going to be battling the countless number of  mom-and-pop stores that are already there and these stores are not  going away any time soon.  How is this battle going to sort itself out?
08:15
October 7, 2019
What Will It Take For Sam’s Club To Be Successful In China?
In the world of shopping in bulk, you have choices.  Specifically, when  you need a huge amount of toilet paper or paper towels, you can choose  to go to either Sam’s Club or Costco. Where do you choose to go? If you are like most people,  if you have a choice you generally choose go to Costco. It’s not clear  why we make this choice. I suspect that one of the reasons is because  Sam’s Club is so closely tied to Walmart that most of us really don’t  want to go there. You would think that the Sam’s Club product managers would have a real challenge on their hands when they  went to China.  However, it turns out that was not a problem.
08:04
September 30, 2019
Why Don’t Amazon’s Product Managers Understand Europe?
Let’s face it: Amazon is a very big company and they have done a lot of  different things very well.  However, it turns out that they may not yet  be able to do everything perfectly. One area where the Amazon product  managers are still struggling is in Europe. Specifically, when it comes  to selling both apparel and footwear they have not yet quite figured out what Europeans really want.  What can the Amazon product managers do to fix this problem?
06:14
September 23, 2019
Hey Product Manager, Can I Ride Your Bike?
If you lived in a modern city, how would you chose to get around town?   Yes, you could always walk – however, that’s going to take a lot of time  and you are going to be tired when you get where you are going. There  are cabs / Uber / Lyft and these all work, but they can quickly become quite expensive.  Most cities have buses and subways, but how far away from you is the  closest stop and how close is it going to get you to where you want to  go?  In these modern times in which we are living, it turns out that you  may have another option – ride a bike.
07:03
September 16, 2019
Starbucks Product Managers Try To Get Their Customers To Come Back Later
Clearly product managers at the Starbucks coffee chain have no problems getting customers to drop by their stores in the  morning and purchase coffee.  However, as is the case with product  managers everywhere, the Starbucks product managers are under pressure  to keep growing the firm’s profits.  If they are going to do this, then  they need to come up with a way to get their morning customers to come back to the stores later in the day and buy more coffee.
06:19
September 9, 2019
Product Managers Prepare To Battle It Out Over A New Type Of Milk
When you go shopping, what do you get?  If you are like most of us you  probably pick up some eggs, some cheese, some vegetables, and, oh yeah,  some milk. However, what type of milk do you get? For a  very long time our choices have been somewhat limited. We always got  the same types: whole, 2%, or skim. However, some creative product  managers are getting ready to change the product development definition  of milk and the existing milk product managers are going to have be be  ready to deal with it.  What’s going on here?
07:26
August 26, 2019
Product Managers Struggle To Use Price To Make Their Products Popular
As product managers, when we want to boost the sales of our product, one  of the  “levers” that we have to make this happen is the price of our  product.  If everything works out the way that it should, if we lower the  price of our product then sales should go up. However, product managers  who work for traditional retailers are discovering that for them their  product development definition has changed and this lever is not working  the way that it should. There are a lot of reasons for this, but the  fact that their customers are starting to use more technology when they  shop is part of the issue.  What can be done to put control of a product’s success back in the hands of product managers? 
06:27
August 19, 2019
Are Watch Product Managers Almost Out Of Time?
So here’s an interesting question to kick things off: do you wear a  watch?  Not all that long ago, the answer to this question would have  been pretty much “yes” for everyone. I mean, how else were you going to  be able to tell what time it was? However, as with all such things in  life, things have changed. Now when people want to know what time it is,  they whip out their mobile phones and glance at them. Kids these days just don’t think about purchasing the fancy watches that their parents used to buy.  What can watch product managers do to change things? 
08:07
August 12, 2019
Amazon Takes On Walmart: Who’s Product Managers Will Win?
I suspect that if I asked you to take a moment and feel sorry for the  product managers who work for Amazon, you probably would not.  For that  matter, if I asked you to take a moment and feel bad for the product  managers who work for Amazon, you probably would also find that hard to  do. However, it turns out that being one of these types of product managers is quite difficult.  The reason that it is so hard is because although your company is  already very large, you are still under a great deal of pressure to keep  growing your product lines.  What’s a product manager to do? 
08:13
August 5, 2019
Create and Barrel Product Managers Learn To Be Social
Crate and Barrel sells a lot of furniture.   They are now faced with the age old question of how best to get their  furniture noticed by their potential customers. In the past, the firm  relied on what had always worked for them: still photographs. However,  lately that has all changed. The company now has over a million  Instagram followers. They also now produce more digital content then  they produce photographs. New videos are published on YouTube weekly.  What changed at Crate and Barrel?
07:06
July 29, 2019
How The Yum Product Managers Are Adapting To A Changing World
I can’t actually tell you if it would be one of the best product  management jobs to have, but I can tell you that it would certainly be  one of the most delicious.  What am I talking about? I’m talking about  being a product manager who works for YUM Brands.  You know, the company that owns the Pizza Hut, Taco Bell, and KFC  brands. It turns out that the world of fast food that these folks live  in is undergoing a great deal of change and that means that these product managers have to scramble to change their product development definition and keep up. 
05:47
July 22, 2019
Amazon Product Managers Decide To Do Battle With UPS
As I’m sure that we all know by now, Amazon is a very large company that  does a lot of different things: they ship books and products, offer  cloud computing resources, and even run an internet based television  channel.  The product managers at Amazon are under an enormous amount of  pressure to always be looking for ways for the company to keep on growing.  This is why they have expanded in to such diverse areas as grocery  stores. However, now the Amazon product managers are taking a closer  look at how they run their business and they’ve decided that it’s time for some of the firms that they have been relying on to go away.  Now  Amazon is getting ready to update their product development definition  in order to take on UPS and start its own delivery business. 
08:26
July 15, 2019
Can Coke Product Managers Make Their New Alcoholic Drink A Success?
So for just a moment, picture yourself as a product manager for one of the most iconic products out there: Coke-Cola.   You’ve done a great job – Coke is one of the most popular drinks  available and no matter what country you go to, it is very well known.  The company makes an enormous amount of money from your soft drink  product every year and in all honesty, traditionally you’ve only had one  real competitor – Pepsi. However, in the past few years, things have started to become a bit more challenging for you.  More and more of your customers are staring to reject the sugary  beverage that you are offering them and instead they are choosing to  drink water and sports drinks.  What’s a product manager to do? 
07:30
July 8, 2019
Can Product Managers Save “American Idol”?
So who among us has not heard about the famous TV show “American Idol”?   This is the show where anyone can try out to be on the show and the  best singers are then selected to compete in a multi-week competition in  which one of them will eventually be crowned the “American Idol” and  potentially get a lucrative recording contract. This show used to be  very popular, then it fell out of popularity and eventually ended up  getting canceled. However, now another network is thinking about  bringing it back.  Can their product managers change its product development definition and bring a once popular TV show back from the dead? 
08:05
June 24, 2019
Amazon Product Managers Prepare For War With Walmart Product Managers
 Amazon is a large and powerful company that dominates the world of  online selling. Walmart is a large and powerful company that dominates  the world of bricks & mortar selling.  These two firms are starting  to come into conflict when it comes to next-day home delivery as Walmart starts to move into online sales and Amazon starts to move into home delivery.   The product managers at Amazon are going to have to sharpen their  skills and review their product development definition in order to go  into battle with the product managers at Walmart.  
07:03
June 17, 2019
Boeing Product Managers Struggle To Come Back From The 737 MAX Disaster
Every product manager job is different. Some are easy and some are hard.  Right now, being the product manager at Boeing who is responsible for the 737 MAX jet would defiantly fall into the difficult category.  The reason that this would be such a hard job to have right now is because this airplane has experienced a set of disastrous crashes.  In October, Lion Air Flight 610 crashed just minutes after taking off  from Jakarta, Indonesia. It was the first fatal accident involving a 737  Max. 189 people died. This was followed in March when Ethiopian  Airlines Flight 302, involving the same Max jet model, also crashed  minutes after takeoff, killing all 157 people on board.  How can product  manager come back from product setbacks like this?  
07:34
June 10, 2019
Product Managers Deal With The Challenge Of Cup Holders
So if you were a product manager who was in charge of an automobile,  what do you think that your #1 concern would be? Do you think that your  customers would care most about how fast your car could go? How about  how many doors it has or the size of its tires? Could it be the sound  system or the built-in navigation system?  What’s very interesting is  that although all of these items may be important to your car buying  customer, they may not be the one thing that will cause them to buy or  not buy your car. What could that one thing be you ask?  How about cupholders? 
09:22
June 3, 2019
Product Managers Discover That The Circular Is Not Going Away
So if you are running a business and you’d like to keep your customers  aware and informed about what products you are offering, what’s the best  way to go about doing this?  In our modern age, a lot of product  managers would look at their product development definition and say that  you need to update your web site and they’d be correct.  However, what  more and more store owners are discovering is that one of the oldest retailing tricks has somehow survived the arrival of the e-commerce wave – the paper circular. 
06:39
May 20, 2019
Barnes & Noble Product Managers Rediscover Books
Quick question for you: when was the last time that you were in a Barnes & Noble bookstore?   When I tried to answer this question, I had to think about it for  awhile. I think that the last time I actually entered one of their  stores was around Christmas when I had whittled my list down to the last  few people who are always hard to shop for. Since then, I haven’t been  back. The Barnes & Noble product managers know that I have not been  back – that’s a problem for them.  Clearly they need to make some changes in order to get people like me to both visit their stores more often and, of course, buy more stuff! 
07:11
May 13, 2019
What Can Store Credit Card Product Managers Do To Remain Viable?
So if I was to take a look inside of your purse or wallet right now,  what would I find? I’m willing to bet that you probably have either a  Visa or a Mastercard credit card, perhaps an American Express credit  card or even a Discover credit card. However, what else would be there?  Would you have any store issued credit cards?  Perhaps from Walmart, Macy’s, Home Depot, etc.?  Well guess what, these  store issued credit cards are in trouble and their product managers are  scrambling to find ways to change their product development definition  in order to save them. 
07:34
May 6, 2019
Is The Best Product Defense A Cheap Defense?
Shaving is something that men without beards or mustaches do just about  every day.  In all honesty, I don’t think that we spend a lot of time  thinking about shaving – it’ just something that we do.  Over at Gillette, since they make razors, they spend a lot of time thinking about how men shave and they have reached a startling conclusion: their products cost too much! 
06:50
April 29, 2019
How Can Product Managers Save The Internal Combustion Engine?
Let’s face it: if you are a product manager for the traditional car engine, called an internal combustion engine, things are looking rather tough for you right now.  The world is changing and you’ve suddenly got a lot of completion.  The arrival of popular electric vehicles and a bunch of new government  regulations about pollution mean that internal combustion engines are  now at risk and their product development definition is going to have to  be changed.  The good news for product managers is that the auto makers  and oil companies are coming together to find ways to save this type of  engine. The secret appears to be a new high-tech engine oil. 
06:24
April 22, 2019
Product Managers Struggle To Get Their Customized Email Correct
So let’s talk about email for just a moment.  If you are like me, you get a ton of the stuff. In all honesty, most of  it is junk and I just end up deleting it even before I read it.   However, there are those one or two emails that just happen to catch my eye.  I’m in the market for something and that email seems to be talking  about what I know that I’m looking for. When this happens, and it  doesn’t happen very often, I will open and, gasp!, read the email.  It  turns out that retail product managers are currently not doing a very  good job of getting me to open the emails that they send me. What’s up? 
06:53
April 8, 2019
Product Managers Try To Find Stores To Fill Malls
When was the last time that you went out to a mall?  For most of us, it’s  probably been a while. We used to always go to the mall – that’s where  you could get stuff, especially during the holidays. However, with the  arrival of online shopping most of us don’t go to malls  as much anymore. This has created a problem for mall product managers.   Creating and filling a mall with stores used to be a straightforward job  for product managers: get a few big stores, get some smaller but still  well known stores, and ta-da you had a mall.  However, with today’s changing retail situation, mall product managers are having to change their product development definition and how they do their job. 
08:26
April 1, 2019
Grocery Store Product Managers Get Ready For The Future
Product managers for grocery stores have actually had it pretty easy for  quite some time. If you think about it, your local grocery store  probably has not changed all that much since you were a little kid. Oh  sure, now they have organic vegetables and perhaps they create prepared  meals, but their product development definition has not really changed  all that much.  It turns out that big changes are getting ready to come. With the arrival of “shop from home services”, grocery stores are going to have to change in order to stay in business.  It sure seems like their product managers are going to have to start to get innovative. 
07:53
March 25, 2019
New Product Competition Challenges For Product Managers: Balloon Toys
How many of you have ever been involved in a water balloon fight? I’m  willing to bet that most of us have at some point in time.  Do you  remember how that went? You got some balloons, then it seemed to take  forever as you used the hose to fill the balloons, and then you  proceeded to run around your yard throwing your balloons at your friends  trying to get them as wet as you possibly could. I think that we can  all agree that the biggest delay in our fun was the annoying time that it took to fill up all of those water balloons.   Well good news, that problem has been solved. However, soon after it  was solved someone else came along with the same solution.  What’s a  product manager to do? 
07:06
March 18, 2019
The Shortest Product Manager Job Ever!
So here’s a quick question for you: what is the shortest time that  you’ve ever worked at a product manager job?  Product managers are  generally considered to be valuable members of the product team who work  on the product development definition and we can have a direct impact  on the bottom line of the product project that we are involved in. We’re  valuable and generally a company would be resistant to getting rid of  us as long as our product is doing well.  That’s why I was surprised when I got fired after two weeks on the job at my new product manager position. 
07:00
March 11, 2019
Restaurant Product Managers Discover Too Much Of A Good Thing
As product managers, the one thing that we’d all like to have is more customers.  We dream of the day that we’ve created a product development definition  that will cause our customers think about our product and then as  quickly as they can take action to get their hands on it.  These hopes  and dreams are no different for product managers who work in the  restaurant industry. These product managers have the same set of things that they want. A little while back they thought that they had found a  way to make it happen: create mobile applications to support their restaurant!  Well, good idea, but it came with some side effects that nobody had counted on… 
06:46
March 4, 2019
The Digital World Changes The Way That Food Company Product Managers Operate
Let’s be straight about a few things: the world in which we live is  currently changing. A lot. Nowhere is this more evident than perhaps  when we take a look at how consumers go about buying food.   This used to be a simple task: people jumped into their cars with their  food shopping list in hand and drove to the local grocery store and got  what they needed. However, with the arrival of that internet thing,  this is all starting to change.  People are now starting to shop for food  online. What this has meant for food company product managers is that  their world is changing. Case in point. People who are shopping online  tend to just buy exactly what is on their shopping list. Nothing else.   This means that product managers have to come up with ways to change  their product development definition so that they can convince them to  add last minute items that they may not have been planning on buying.  How are they going to do that? 
08:10
February 25, 2019
Is It Time For Product Managers To Go Meatless?
So let’s see a show of hands. Who here enjoys a delicious, juicy,  burger? Hmm, I don’t see everyone’s hands going up, but I do see just  about everyone’s hands going up. There is no question that in the  developed 1st world countries, people do love their meat.   There’s just one problem – it turns out that it’s really expensive in  terms of land, water, and feed to raise the animals that produce all of  that meat. As the rest of the world starts to develop a taste for protein,  we’re just not going to be able to keep doing things the way that we’re  doing them today.  Looks like its time for the product managers to step  in and lend a helping hand by changing their protein product development  definition. 
08:30
February 18, 2019
How Can Product Managers Tell Customers To Not Use Their Product?
Every product needs a product manager. This means that things that are  good for us (think vegetables, running shoes, and protein bars) all need  product managers. Likewise, things that are legal but perhaps not so  good for us also need to have their own product managers (think guns,  fatty foods, and porn). Into this latter category falls cigarettes.   There is no doubt that cigarettes are a big business or that they are  bad for the customers who choose to use them. They are legal, but they are also generally considered to be deadly for those who choose to smoke. This is the way that the world has been for quite some time. Until things changed.  All of sudden, cigarette product managers found themselves in the challenging position of having to find ways to get their customers to not smoke. 
08:16
February 11, 2019
Will The Amazon Hub Program Solve Amazon’s Package Delivery Issues?
 Just imagine if you were a product manager at Amazon. What would one of  your biggest challenges be? There’s no problem with Amazon having what  your customers want – Amazon is huge and they’ve got a lot of warehouses.  No, your biggest problem would be just exactly how you were planning on  getting what your customer has ordered from your warehouse into their hands. Like a million times a day. Good news. Amazon thinks that they may have found a solution to this problem: hub. 
06:14
February 7, 2019