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Loving your product

over 13 years ago | Bhuwan Lodha: What Not to Build

Believe me, killing your own product is the most painful task you can ever be "told" to do. Sometimes, we are in so much love with what we build, that we tend to forget the ecosystem around it. This could be a BLUNDER for any product manager.First line of a PM's job description surely reads - "Define the right product to build". And when this definition is changed in such a drastic way that closing current development makes more sense, more often than not, teams start to get frustrated and fidgety. What others may not understand (and the PM must) is that "being in business" is more important and critical than being on the cutting edge of technology or building beautiful products.For a team, to collectively enter the comfortable "I-know-enough" zone is pretty common. I have seen some products getting closed / realigned so late and with such convincing reasons that at times I start to wonder why not earlier! Things could get tricky when there is a trade-off between making early decisions and minimizing risks. How to handle this is not just a strategic stunt but also a challenge for PMs.So what could be the reasons that could lead to shelving of products?1. Technological imbalance:Could be caused by inventions, acquisitions, and even by slow development progress.2. Organization wide priority shuffle.Tying your product with the mainstream value chain of your business is crucial. And with everyadjustment in this chain, products' priorities are often realigned.3. Turbulence in the ecosystemWhat do you do when you find out that your potential customers will not be in business by the time you are ready to ship? Stop. Think.What do you do when you find out that your competitors are marching at a velocity that is several times yours? Think. Stop.and last but not the least4. Dearth of dollars!Sponsor(s) could lose the confidence or money and may pull out.Do you know of more reasons?And yes, my big question is still open - should you "love" your product?