One of the most important skills that productmanagers rarely talk about

It could also be the hardest to master.

What is this overlooked #PM skill?

No, it’s not persuasion.

No, it’s not domain knowledge.

It’s certainly not technical skills.

Its the ability to say “No”.

Saying NO to customers when the demand doesn’t match the #strategy or #roadmap.
Harder if that is your early customer for a new #product or you are a #startup.

Saying NO to sales people pushing for a feature that will take the product in a completely different direction.
Off course, there is a large deal on the line. Why else would they push?

Saying NO to your boss, super boss or the CEO when they are taking product in a direction that does not make sense.

Each of these is tough.

Saying “No” is hard and saying “No” to those with more power is harder.

But, it matters.
If you let everyone dictate the direction you have “Too many cooks, spoil the …”

Off course, you have to listen, understand, avoid ego clash, use data, stories, research, persuasion….

All the while keeping in mind that you could be wrong and others may have a valid demand.

Tough balancing act.

Do you ever say “No”?

How do you say it? Justify it?