10 great pieces on product development in 2020

Sigurd Seteklev
December 22, 2020

2020 has been a different year for all of us. We have worked differently, lived differently, and learned a lot about ourselves, families, employers, politicians, and the world in general. But there was also some excellent product development content written this year! Here are some of the great reads we found:

From Counter-Strike to keyboard shortcuts

Jeremy Vuillermet from Pitch wrote an excellent article describing the similarities in interactions between modern products and computer games.


Game Design, Not Gamification, for Great Products

In this podcast, Rahul Vohra from Superhuman describes how they modeled their product based on game design principles and why gamification is probably not the right thing for most B2B SaaS.

https://a16z.com/2020/01/13/game-design-not-gamification/ (podcast with transript)

How Figma product teams work

Sho Kuwamoto wrote a Tweetstorm describing the product development process at Figma. A must-read if you are as impressed with Figmas' ability to ship great stuff as we are.


Are you shipping faster than you learn?

An important question discussed by John Cutler in this post. If you ship faster than you learn, are you shipping quality?


Intercom outcome-based process

Brian Donohue and Robbie Allan described the Product Impact Framework used at Intercom


Starting together

Starting together as a team is one of the most impactful and overlooked ways of making teams more impactful and happy. John Cutler wrote this short post about starting together here:


Empowered engineers

Marty Cagan calls getting engineers more involved in the product development process early the most important concept of moving from feature teams to product teams:


Why Spotify doesn't use the "Spotify Model."

Jeremiah Lee, who happens to work at Spotify, describes why the Squad model failed at Spotify, and in general, about what lessons you should learn (and not copy).


Why you might not want to do OKRs

Marty Cagan wrote this interesting piece on why he has stopped recommending OKRs for most companies he meets. It is probably not the reason you expect.


Journey to product teams

We have seen this infographic made by John Cutler in many settings. It isn't really meant to be an exact model. Still, it is a great starting point for giving a vocabulary to discuss your teams' process.



You found some great articles that should be on the list? Comment below

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Happy holidays from Kitemaker!