2020 State of the Union for Products That Count aka Trying Not to Brag When There’s a Lot to Be Proud Of
This year, like each year before it, we have amazing plans to serve our community of nearly 300,000 product managers like you. I’m so excited to share what is in store for Products That Count in 2020.
Sometimes, the best way to see where we’re going is to understand where we’ve come from.
Products That Count started because I asked myself: what makes a great product?
I founded Products That Count after spending a dozen years building products and companies at Facebook, Nokia, and Electronic Arts. Upon selling my last company, I joined Facebook where I held various product leadership positions, then left Facebook because I was invited to write a book on what makes great products. As I was writing it, I realized that every product manager has an interesting perspective on that topic so I started to host a dinner series with other product leaders from innovative companies. Subsequently, my book became an award-winning bestseller and the dinner series turned into one of the largest networks of product managers in the world: Products That Count!
Products That Count helps Product Managers go from good to great.
I am so proud of what Products That Count has been able to contribute to the community since our launch five years ago. Almost 300,000 PMs attend 100 local events and listen to 3,000 podcasts and videos featuring product leaders from Netflix, Coinbase, Box and more.
You find value in our content and contributions and that is an honor I do not take lightly. Therefore, we’ll be working hard to make sure we’re delivering the best content yet in 2020. The focus of our content is twofold. First, we offer tons of amazing content online which is driven by C/VP-level product execs. This includes videos, podcasts (rated in the Top 500 tech podcasts on iTunes!) and articles that are all about what it takes to build great products. There’s something new for you to see, read or listen to every day!
Here is some of our most popular content this year:
- Top 20 Books Every Product Manager Should Read
- Perspective on Product Management by 5 Product Gurus
- Netflix fmr VP on Brand Positioning
- 8 Soft Skills to Succeed as a Product Manager
The other side of our focus is offline content in the form of our Speaker Series. Products That Count will run 100 events in 2020 in San Francisco, New York, Seattle, Austin, San Jose and … I am very excited to announce that we are adding Toronto to our list of cities in which we host events starting next month! These events see up to 250 product managers in attendance.
Each of them features 1 VIP guest for a quality talk on product management best practices and active networking. For instance, past VIP guests include CPOs/Product VPs from Instagram, Doordash, and more. Programs take place monthly in the major tech hubs of North-America. You can learn more about events coming to your city here.
What makes Products That Count unique is the passion of its Product Leaders.
Product Management is an apprenticeship: we’re all snowflakes and unique in our ways. And, we innovate so our trade itself constantly evolves. That’s why learning to build great products is best taught by practitioners, people who have succeeded in the role. That’s why we’ve designed Products That Count to be about sharing the best practices of C/VP-level product executives such as the Netflix Product VP, Coinbase CPO, and Box CPO.
Here’s how those awesome leaders feed the product conversation:
- They join the product conversation at our invite-only executive product salons. These invite-only Product Salons gather 1 VIP guest and some of the most accomplished product execs for an intimate fireside chat and high-quality networking around delicious food. Our past VIP guests include the Logitech CEO, Microsoft Windows President, Match.com Founder. Past attendees include CPOs/Product VPs from Visa, Walmart and more.
- They shape the product conversation by giving insightful talks and interviews. These are great opportunities for product executives who are looking to raise their brand and/or build their teams. It also helps to create the positive changes you want for this amazing community and share the valuable insights you’ve gained. Think about what you wish you knew when you were just a few years into being a PM.
- They drive the product conversation by leading local chapters and podcast shows. You can take ownership of the community in your city and as a whole, helping to define your product culture. Be an authority on the future of products by serving on a Product Industry Board and reward product excellence by getting involved with the product awards (more on both below) This is done by the finest people on Earth which we sometimes refer to as the Crew.
Of course, I cannot forget the Product Awards. After all, Silicon Valley may be getting its new Oscars (RIP #Crunchies). We produce the Product Awards and they are based on months of research and insights from thousands of product leaders. The invite-only ceremony gathers some of the most accomplished product execs to toast the best products for product managers. Attendees include 200+ CPOs/Product VPs from Coinbase, Instagram, Visa, Walmart and more.
The event is very “only in San Francisco” with its immersive theatrics, roaring 1920s feel and obscure award categories. You can learn more about the Product Awards here.
Products That Count wouldn’t exist without the support of its partners: THANK YOU!
The influence, network, and market superiority that Products That Count has been able to achieve has been helped by leading brands such as Autodesk, Capital One, and mParticle. I thank them for their participation and look forward to the new partners we’ll welcome in the new year.
After all, Products That Count wouldn’t exist with out the support of our partners. We’re so proud to have helped them transform their companies into product-first organizations. That is the future!
Here are examples of value our partners have received:
Happy 5-Yr Anniversary to Product That Count: here’s to the next decade!
I’ve talked about all of this, and I’ve hardly mentioned the fact that it’s our 5-Year Anniversary. Simply put, we could not have done all of this without you. I have so much excitement about seeing the world become about building great products.
I’m so proud and honored to play this role in our community for this long and look forward to what the future has in store. Speaking of which, what I’m most excited about this year is that we’re expanding! With all of your help and participation, this new vision for a product-focused world is officially going to spread across continents and industries.
We’re taking Products That Count beyond technology. In addition to our partners in tech, we are also expanding into finance, retail, hospitality and more. We won’t rest until we feel like PMs across the globe in every industry feel like they can call Products That Count home. Our Product Industry Board and Product Industry Networks have been essential to this growth.
We’re also proud to produce the exclusive Product Industry Networks. They assemble a Product Industry Board, which is comprised of five to seven handpicked, forward-looking C/VP-level product executives who meet quarterly to help redefine an industry and/or exchange perspective on a given theme. Let’s create a better world for Product Managers! These intimate roundtable discussions result in the creation of 20! pieces of thought leadership content, which are released 5x per quarter and are then combined into a co-branded eBook. The conversation is then broadened to reach the targeted network via four dinners in select cities, one city per quarter.
Our expansion also extends beyond Silicon Valley. This year, we’ll run 100 events globally. And Toronto is the latest addition, w00t! Next step … WORLD DOMINATION!
2020 will be our best year yet!
We’re five years in and in many ways it feels like we’re just getting started. This year will see us in new cities, hosting more events, and creating more content than ever for Product Managers.
And the best part?
It’s not too late for you to get involved. Become a member today or signup for our newsletter so you know when amazing events are coming to a city near you and to ensure you never miss the helpful content that will help you up your game.
If you want to contribute to Products That Count, or if you have thoughts and/or comments, you can reach me at [email protected]