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Escaping the Build Trap - Melissa Perri

Manas J. Saloi
Manas J. Saloi
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Firms can avoid build traps by ensuring product managers hold a strategy-level (rather than feature-level) approach to delivering value to customers. A build trap would be measuring firm success by sales or outputs rather than maximizing customer value.

How to avoid build traps:

  1. Allow product managers to discover and investigate "known unknowns" and scrutinize the "why" of what they are doing
  2. Create an ongoing line of communication with customers to understand the problems they face
  3. Organize product teams around strategic goals rather than features (so each may prioritize the most important initiatives)
  4. Determine strategic goals by asking "How do we streamline the way customers receive value?" and optimizing those flow points
  5. Ensuring strategy is a vision, not a string of products
  6. Measure success of product manager by progress toward strategic goal and problems solved, not revenue generated The tricky balance is giving both strategic and feature-level autonomy to product managers while minimizing levels of management.
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