The year I discovered Sagmeister


Product Triangle: Business, User, Technology

Interesting articles describing product builders/product managers. Seen via an ad by YunoJuno.

The Product Triangle – two posts (adapted version – more practical – on Medium by Daniel Demetri and the original / more in depth – piece by Dan Schmidt on Product Logic). Main crux that looks at the skills dependent on where they sit on the product triangle – Business, User, Technology. Dan Schmidt – looks at the types: Vertex: excel in one area but know very little of the other two, Edge: those that connect two corners, Full triangle: acquire and hold knowledge of product’s technology, user base and business.

The upshot is (I think) that good product managers somewhat amorphously bridge the gaps that exist between other functional areas working toward a product’s success.’ and are ‘accountable for the healthy functioning of The Product Triangle which often entails going deep inside the details of each vertex or edge’.

Depending on background in becoming a product manager – having ‘biases and imbalances that yield greater strength in some areas, and less capability in others’ – for example:

  • User-First Product Manager – design background
  • Business-First Product Manager – MBA / general management
  • Technology-First Product Manager – tech background/engineering/computer science


Filed under: Product management, Uncategorized, , , , ,

Respect the Craft

Mind the Product event videos – not super recent but if you have great speakers who know their craft – much to takeaway: influencing processes, potentially implementation or just seeing how other teams do their thing.

Absolutely love Michelle You‘s presentation. Really open, honest and goes into great detail that allows a level of practical learning from her/Songkick product management process. (SK also have a blog – nice post on designing with data).

Some notes:

  • Modes: Optimising an existing product that’s live. Big bang product features or launches – shouldn’t happen that often. Brand new MVP discovery – you don’t know who your customer is and you don’t have a live product.
  • prioritisation and design-making get easier when goals are well defined. Most of the hard work….comes from breaking down a big..goal into smaller achievable sub-goals.
  • KPI can be broken down into themes or levers that influence that metric
  • Check the acquisition, activation, retention slide…
  • ‘Lean Analytics – Use data to build better start-up faster’: What makes up a good metric: Comparative – to be able to use the same metric for two sets of users, before and after or a/b test. Understandable – having it clear so it can be embedded in the team and easily referred to. Ratio/rate – so rather than total numbers of users, it is conversation rates or ratios – so that you can tell the difference between two things. Actionable – increase monthly users is not an actionable metric, it has got to be something that will change every day and will be sensitive to whatever you are shipping.
  • Example of this: Looking at your weight as a kpi – you want to lose 20lbs in 6 months as a long term kpi. But everyday you will be looking at how many miles you walked, how many calories you consumed – so things that you can control in the short-term that will impact into the longer term metric.
  • Process: take 5-10 themes for the main kpi. Discovery backlog – Experiment – Learning – Validated feature. Create the discovery backlog – idea generation – gamestorming format – use post-it notes (individually) then group them into categories or ideas. Work out the groups into an impact vs effort matrix – collaborative exercise (how much impact will it have vs expected effort involved)
  • Turn into an hypothesis – ‘if…then…because’ – ‘if we show you recommended concerts then you will more likely to buy a ticket because you will see more relevant events based on your tastes’ – So what we showed you before we showed everything in London if we personalise that list based on music you like then you will be probably be more likely to buy tickets.
  • Experimentation process: finding out if this what we should be building – so things like surveys, mock-up and click test, landing page tests, remote usability testing, user research. This will answer assumptions, prototypes, highest level of confidence that it will move the metric.
  • Use of split backlogs – validated features (70%), bugs, tech tasks/support (30%)
  • Meet once a week to prioritise for the next 2 weeks, tasks/stories from each board are selected to get moved into a main development board
  • Main dev board – Backlog: 2 weeks worth of user stories (always have some jfdi tasks). Next up: top 5 prioritised stories. In progress. Awaiting judgement – tests or features that need analysis on how it’s performed. Done.
  • Team dashboards – Review daily metrics dashboard every morning at stand-up. Weekly kpi email to the team tracking progress towards quarterly goals. Feature recap where we review the impact of individual features launched.


Filed under: Podcast / Seminars, UX design, , , ,

Vincent Mahé

New book charting 750 years of Parisian history. Created by Vincent Mahé (his Behance profile has a host of other projects). Full story on Fast Co site. Yours to buy from Nobrow Press.

Seen via @FastCoDesign

vincent-mahe-750-years-cover vincent-mahe-750-years-2 vincent-mahe-750-years-1

Filed under: Illustration, Shop, , , ,

Tintin: Hergé’s Masterpiece

At Somerset House. 12 Nov – 31 Jan. Free. No need to say anymore – surely will be amazing.

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Filed under: Exhibition, Illustration, Visit, , ,

Siri Melchior

Some fantastic illustrations and animations that appear throughout and define the look of the CBBC children’s show Show Me, Show Me. The show itself is fabulous and the illustrative style is brilliantly light, emotive and engaging.

Having done a little research – the illustrations/animations (for Show Me, Show Me) were created when Siri was at Trunk (animation company) which she co-founded. Now at her new venture since 2013 (which she co-founded with Marie Bro) working at (the award winning) Ladybird Films.

Credits: Trunk: Director Siri Melchior; Animators Rebecca Manley and Chris Wright

And from Ladybird films: Rita and Crocodile

Filed under: Film, Illustration, , , , , , ,

NHS.UK Alpha

NHS.UK Alpha – A project to ‘better digital and technology delivery to improve services to patients, to support new ways of providing care, to help save time and money to be spent on those most in need.’

Will read more into this – but on the face of it – looks like this will be the start of the NHS following in the steps of GOV.UK.

Filed under: UX design, ,

Solid Steel Radio

Simple way of using a lead image for promotion/branding on Twitter and on their website by Solid Steel Radio. (Website however is really tricky to navigate around on a laptop – presume it is designed for touch screens?) – For those wanting to hear the sounds of Avalon Emerson check out her Soundcloud page.

Solid Steel Radio site Solid Steel Radio twitter ads

Filed under: Advertising, Design, Graphic, Social Media, ,

Rough Trade vs Solid Steel Radio

A few twitter ads for @RoughTrade and @SolidSteelRadio twitter promotion posts over the last bit of time – a little bit of transparent colour overlay – simple, styled…

Billie Marten Traams Bill Ryder Jones Solid Steel Series 59 Solid Steel Series 60

Filed under: Advertising, Design, Social Media, , , , ,

Ordnance Survey

Although these are a little low quality – Ordnance Survey maps always beautiful. Have to admit I know absolutely nothing about the process of how these are created…hmmm..

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Filed under: Illustration, , ,

i-D + Nike

Some images that have appeared over twitter over the last month or so.

1 – from i-D magazine, Folk Collective shoot by Jo Duck; 2 Nike, Find Your Fast; 3 – Women’s World Cup…




Filed under: Design, Photography, , , ,