Articles by Paul Adams
- Product Judgment: How some people can repeatedly create product success
Paul argues that yes, some PMs are better than others at making decision that lead to product success. But it's not something you're born with. You acquire it by talking to and observing customers over time. It is has limits: it can be transferrable across similar domains, but is less likely to transfer across different domains.
- How We Accidentally Invented Job Stories
Paul argues that the persona aspects of user stories ("As a <persona>") are too specific and do not actually map to behaviors. Behaviors can span demographics, so Intercom introduced a new format based on behaviors: [ When _____ ] [ I want to _____ ] [So I can _____ ]
- Where do product roadmaps come from?
Paul explains the different categories for where roadmap items come from: new ideas, modifications to recently-shipped products, common customer problems, improving product quality, and features to help you scale.
- Rethinking outcomes over outputs
Paul argues that the outcome vs. output conversation needs to expand to include inputs to complete the analysis of the system. Once we're paying attention to outcomes, we can learn more about which inputs produce which outcomes, at what rate of shipping (outputs).
- How to Hire Designers
Paul discusses how to properly hire designers and break the cycle of misunderstanding what design entails. He believes design is not just about aesthetics but also about how a product works. Many companies incorrectly think they can find designers on sites like Dribbble without understanding the different layers of design. The best designers understand visual design as well as interaction, components, and intended outcomes. Companies should evaluate candidates based on their strengths across these layers. While visuals draw people in, functionality and value keep them engaged. Popular portfolios do not necessarily indicate great design work.