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Empowered: Ordinary People, Extraordinary Products Hardcover – 7 December 2020
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Become the leader your product teams, and your company, need you to be.
"Every product leader--no--every CEO and senior management team should read this. Now."
--PHIL TERRY, Founder, Collaborative Gain; co-author, Customers Included
"There are only a few people in the world with the experience to outline the secrets of world-class product organizations. That's what Marty and Chris do in this book. This is essential reading for every product leader."
--WYATT JENKINS, SVP Product, Procore
"Marty Cagan's INSPIRED motivated a generation of product managers to build products customers love, and EMPOWERED is the blueprint leaders need to transform their organizations and empower their teams to deliver on that inspiration."
--MARTIN ERIKSSON, Co-Founder, Mind the Product
"Marty and Chris have written the definitive book on product leadership. Their emphasis on coaching as a key leadership skill and the detail on how to do it well, makes EMPOWERED a must-read for new, aspiring, and experienced product leaders."
--TERESA TORRES, Product Discovery Coach, Product Talk
"EMPOWERED is a must-read for product leaders in the same way INSPIRED is unquestionably the most influential book in tech product management."
--FELIPE CASTRO, Founder, OutcomeEdge
"This is the missing guide to product leadership. It gave me the tools, mindset, and practical insights to excel in my role. I fully expect to come back to this book on a recurring basis--as I do with INSPIRED. EMPOWERED needs to be on the shelf of all product leaders and aspiring product leaders."
--GABRIELLE BUFREM, Manager of Product Management, VMware
"EMPOWERED is full of straight talk for anyone looking to understand how the best product teams operate. The book demonstrates that great product companies aren't made by magic--the structure and leadership of the product development organization creates the environment for success."
--HOLLY HESTER-REILLY, Founder, H2R Product Science
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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
Part I Lessons from top tech companies
- Nothing concrete in this section
Part II Coaching
- It mostly talks about the importance of the various aspects of coaching, but in terms of how to become better at each one of them, I got very little out of this book. You are much better off reading "High Output Management" instead.
Part III Staffing
- Nothing new here, if you have read a book on how to hire and develop employees (again better off reading "High Output Management."
Part IV Product Vision and Principles
- This one talks about how important it is to create a product vision and using visiontype is a good one to do that (again, nothing concrete)
Part V Team Topology
- How to structure product teams. If you've read "Inspired", this is pretty much a repeat or revision of what you already know.
Part VI Product Strategy
- The key takeaway here is that product strategy should be focused, driven by insights and composed of key problems to solve to achieve the business goals. It doesn't tell you how to come up with product strategy btw.
Part VII Team objectives
- The key takeaway here is that objectives are key problems to solve, and the product leaders are supposed to allocate these objectives across the different product teams (it should be done through conversations with the product teams of course). And the product teams are supposed to come up with the key results, not the product leaders.
Part VII Case Study
- This is probably the most interesting part of this book. It's also interesting for me personally because I am 99% certain about the name of the jobs marketplace company that's featured here (I have worked in this space).
Part IX and Part X
- Repeat of what's mentioned in earlier parts of this book as well as "Inspired"
Dave Tucker, Sr. VP of Technology, Workiva
I loved the fact that specific use cases are provided. For example when we talk about an empowered team versus a feature team what does that mean and look like? More importantly, what do empowered product teams do differently that create more customer and business value?
Three topics specifically resonated with me that I plan to focus more on in 2021.
1. Coaching - Everyone deserves a good manager who actively coaches them.
2. Product Vision - Explaining the meaningful impact we have on customers lives.
3. Product Strategy - Giving teams a small number of hard problems to solve and the space to solve them.
If you are serious about being an exceptional product leader, this book will absolutely raise your game IF you sincerely put it to use.