Companies across every industry now recognize the value of product management as a discipline and are investing heavily in its practitioners. In 2016, many influencers helped to move the industry forward.
Below, we focus on 40 thought leaders along with their top contributions from (roughly) the past year. This list is in no particular order.
Kevin is the founder of Product Manager HQ which is one of the first and largest Slack communities for product people. He also curates a weekly newsletter with more than 12,000 subscribers. He is an associate at FundersClub, a venture firm that invests in seed to series A companies.
- Venture Capital is Product Management
- As a Product Manager, What Do You Spend Most of Your Typical Work Time On?
Julie is the VP of Product Design at Facebook where she has worked across newsfeed, photos, and groups. She was featured in Design Disruptors and is a frequent writer on the topic of scaling design.
David is the CEO of Drift and an active advisor/investor to firms such as DormRoom Fund and NextRiver Venture. He was previously, the Chief Product Officer at Hubspot.
- Building a Customer-Driven Product Team is Product Management
- This Is Why I Never Hire Product Managers
- How A Modern Product Team Should Work
Tobias van Schneider is a German multi-disciplinary maker of useful, curious and beautiful things. (he just doesn't like the word entrepreneur). Originally born in Germany, and raised in Austria, he now lives and works in New York City.
- University vs. Self Taught
- 6 Lessons From A Creative Director With Zero Work Experience
- Should You Write As A Designer?
Janna is the Co-Founder of ProdPad and Mind the Product, one of the largest international product communities in the world.
- Why Release Dates Are Irrelevant To Product Managers
- User Onboarding: The UX Behind Our Magically Extending Free Trial
Christopher is the VP of Product Management at Hubspot where he co-founded the Sidekick team and has built and led product divisions responsible for Sidekick, Sidekick for Business and HubSpot CRM.
- Why HubSpot Is Competing With Itself (And Why You Should, Too)
- Why Product Qualified Leads are the Answer to a Failing Freemium Model
- A Framework for Measuring Product Impact
Giff is the Vice President of Product at Axial where he leads product strategy. He was previously the CEO of Neo, a global product innovation consulting firm which was later acquired by Pivotal.
- Good vs Bad Product Management
- A Piece of Advice for Junior Product Managers
- How Engineering Leads Can Work Well With Product Management Leads
Lombardo is Chief Design Strategist at Fresh Tilled Soil where he builds and mentors teams on user experience design and product strategy. He has written a book on design sprints and teaches courses on design, innovation, and big data at Madrid’s IE Business School.
- Design Sprint: A Practical Guidebook for Building Great Digital Products
- Why Talking to Customers is the Most Important Thing a Product Manager Can Do
- Product Roadmapping: It’s Getting Personal
Karen is a best-selling author and Contributing Editor for the Harvard Business Review. She previously served as an editor for Inc., Legal Business Magazine, and the American Lawyer.
- Know Your Customers’ “Jobs to Be Done”
- What Airbnb Understands About Customers’ “Jobs to Be Done”
- The Power of Designing Products for Customers You Don’t Have Yet
Ameet is the Vice President of Product at Twitter where he focuses on improving the company’s social and digital advertising products. Previously he founded Dasient, which was later acquired by Twitter.
- What You Can Do to Simplify Your Products
- How to Pick Winning Product Features
- Decision Making for PMs
John is the Chief Product Officer at TaskRabbit where he executes the product roadmap and vision. He has held various product roles in the past and often writes about product management on Medium.
- What Playing in a Rock Band Taught Me About Product Management
- The Bipolar Nature of Product Management
- Startup Decisions: The Troll in the Middle of the Table
Blair is the Principal Product Manager at SAS, a business analytics platform. He was previously a senior product manager at IBM where he focused on customer engagement solutions.
Matt is the co-founder of Constellate Data, a company that provides consulting, research, and training services to organizations that rely heavily on data. Previously he held senior product roles at Bitly and Songza (acquired by Google).
- A New Skill Model for Product Managers
- Navigating Human Complexity is Product Management
- Product Management in Two Steps
Simone is a best-selling author and the Founder of Blood Orange, a marketing and strategy advisory specializing in innovative and emerging markets.
- What It Takes to Innovate Within Large Corporations
- How Intuit Built A Better Support System for Intrapreneurs
- Jugaad Innovation: Think Frugal, Be Flexible, Generate Breakthrough Growth
Anuraag Verma heads up growth at Alpha, where he works closely with product leaders at brands like Spotify, Aetna and Wiley, to help them generate actionable customer insights to inform critical product decisions. Anuraag has successfully launched new ventures and products across four continents, and has facilitated hundreds of product management workshops for senior executives at Fortune 500 companies.
- How to Innovate in a Regulated Industry
- Corporate Training is Product Management
- The Germination of Great Product Teams
Brandon is a Senior Product Manager at Shopify, where he is focused on ecommerce and scaling the product organization as the company grows.
Des is the Co-Founder and Chief Strategy Officer at Intercom. He is also an active contributor to the Intercom blog where he writes about product management, UX, and strategy.
Cindy is the Director of UX at Yammer, a Microsoft company, and the author of Lean Customer Development. She is an expert on validating product concepts through customer development, often answering product related questions on Quora.
- Should I Outsource Customer Development?
- This is Product Management
- Build Your User Base With These Human Behavior Hacks
Scott is currently a venture partner at Benchmark Capital and the VP of Products for Adobe. He was previously the CEO of Behance (acq. By Adobe) and an associate at Goldman Sachs.
Scott is a columnist at the Boston Globe and the Editor and Co-founder of Innovation Leader. Through a quarterly publication and ongoing events, Innovation Leader offers best practices and networking to corporate innovation managers.
- Chronicling Corporate Innovation is Product Management
- A Nickel For Your thoughts on How to Make Taxis Better
- 3 Things Venture Capital Should Do to Bring More Women Into the Business
Eric is the author of “The Lean Startup” which triggered a global business movement around the world. He is also the founder of the Long-Term Stock Exchange and recently released a sequel to “The Lean Startup” called “The Leader’s Guide.”
Ken is a partner at Google Ventures where he provides product and engineering support to various portfolio companies. He is also a group product manager for GV’s quantitative research and data science team. He is the author of the oft-referenced post: How to Hire a Product Manager.
Aarron is the VP of Design Education at InVision where he advocates for design best practices to guide the future of software. Previously, he was the VP of R&D at MailChimp.
- Getting Out of the Office is Product Management
- 7 Problems Growing Design Teams Face
- When Design Becomes A Black Box
Martin is the Co-Founder of the world’s largest product management community, Mind the Product. He also consults for startups in the U.K. and San Francisco.
- Product Management is More Important Than Ever
- What is a Product Manager?
- What We Learned at Mind the Product 2016
Daniel is a product management consultant, and focuses on services ranging from roadmapping to prototyping. He is an expert of process.
- How to Deal with “Sinatra” Stakeholders
- Moving from Solutions to Problems
- A Trello Template For Your Product Backlog
Michael is the Co-Founder of Product Collective, known for their annual event INDUSTRY, which brings together hundreds of product people for a 2-day immersive event. He is also a contributor for Rocketship.fm, one of the top rated online startup podcasts.
- What Product VP’s at High Growth Startups Have in Common
- Join Product Collective To Connect, Collaborate, and Get Inspired As A Product Person
- Startup Seed Funding for the Rest of Us: How to Raise $1 Million for Your Startup - Even Outside of Silicon Valley
Anna is a product manager at Yammer and was previously a product manager at Asana. She also co-hosts the Clearly Product podcast where she reviews product books on a monthly basis.
- Clearly Product Podcast
- How I Negotiated For An Additional $15,000 At Yammer
- How to Be A Killer Manager (And How I Know I Have the Best One)
Carlos is the founder of Product School, which offers product management courses in Silicon Valley, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and New York City. When he’s not designing courses, he can be found often writing about product management as a discipline on Medium.
- Questions You Hadn’t Thought To Ask (About Product Management)
- Becoming a Product Manager Without Technical Background : Alessandro Mannino
- 3 Mobile Product Lessons From Uber
Abhishek is a Product Marketing Manager at Freshdesk, the industry-leading customer support software solution. Previously, he was a product manager at Crowdfire.
- Why the Best Product Managers Don’t Build the Features Their Users Ask For
- Uber is Rewriting the Mobile App Playbook, Again!
- Why Tech Companies Suck at Product Feedback
Heddy is a Product Manager at Pivotal Labs where she specializes in data-driven consumer research to help startups and enterprise build software applications. She was previously a project manager at VaynerMedia where she managed a variety of social and digital campaigns.
- This Is What My User Stories Look Like
- The Qualities I Look For In A Product Designer
- What My Backend and API User Stories Look Like
Kevin is the Co-founder and CPO of Notion where he uses his 10+ years of full-stack product design experience designing, researching, marketing, planning, and building products.
- Six Templates for Aspiring Product Managers
- Speed, Accuracy, Quality, and Joy
- A Simple Way for Product Managers to Measure Delivered Value
Chris is the Global Head of Product Design at Nasdaq, and leads a team of 25 product designers to create high fidelity prototypes that define the vision of the Nasdaq software product portfolio. He is also the founder of UX Show and Tell, a casual workshop to promote actionable design critique within the design community.
- Why UX Designers Should Influence Customer Experience
- Designing for Business: When Revenue, Profit, and Margin are Stakeholders
- The Organization’s Design Research Maturity Model
Jake is a Design Partner at Google Ventures where he helps startups build better product design. He also created Google Ventures’ sprint process and authored the book Sprint: How to Solve Big Problems and Test New Ideas in Just Five Days
- How to Test Prototypes with Customers: The Five-Act Interview
- Announcing ‘Sprint’: GV’s guidebook for startups (and Everyone Else)
- How We Tried to Design Our Own Book Cover (and How Jessica Hische Saved the Day)
Pulkit is the founder and CEO of Chameleon, a platform for creating onboarding experiences without writing code. He shares product and first-time user experience insights on Medium.
- Don’t Assume New Users Want to Learn How to Use Your Product
- Why Tooltips are Terrible and Why You Should Use Them for Your Product
- The First-Timer’s Guide to User Onboarding
Simon is leading the upcoming Facebook at Work product, and has worked on both consumer-facing and developer-facing products for Facebook. He is an active mentor to early-stage companies through the TechStars accelerator and is a drones enthusiast, often editing the drones.fm blog.
Melissa consults on Product Strategy, UX Design, and Process through her agency, ProdUX Labs. She is also a frequent speaker at conferences focused on product management and design.
- The Build Trap is Product Management
- What is Good Product Strategy?
- Changing the Conversation about Product Management vs. UX
Ben is co-author of the book Getting Value out of Agile Retrospectives - A Toolbox of Retrospective Exercises. When he is not writing about product on his blog, he also serves as a product consultant who shares his expertise in lean, agile, and scrum to help businesses improve their development processes.
- Spotify Wants To Be Good at Failing
- Overcoming Paradigms to Become Truly Agile
- Becoming a Responsive Enterprise
Sarah is a product strategist and consultant. She writes about UX design in her must-read newsletter and for UX Magazine.
- The UX of Learning UX is Broken
- The UX of Hiring for UX Positions
- Why You Can’t Afford to Skip User Research
Marty is a partner at the Silicon Valley Product Group, where he helps companies develop better product strategy, product design, user experience, and more. He is a regular contributor to the SVPG blog, and speaker at the Mind The Product conference.
Jeremy, aka The Product Guy, is the Head of Product at Wade & Wendy. He is the founder of The Product Mentor program and The Product Group Meetup in New York and London.
Josh is a longtime product manager and a partner at Greylock ventures where he invests in new consumer products and services. Greylock has invested in companies like AirBnB, Facebook, and Linkedin.
- Building to Independence on Top of Other Platforms
- Building Your Growth Model and Ladder of Engagement
- Listen Better
Nir is the author of the bestselling book Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products. He writes about the intersection of psychology, technology, and businesses for TechCrunch, Inc. Magazine, Psychology Today, and his personal blog NirandFar.com.
- User Engagement is Product Management
- Three Steps to Get Up to Speed On Any Subject Quickly
- Die Dashboards, Die! Why Conversations Will Reinvent Software