The challenges of consulting product founders

Becoming a #productmanager is hard

Building a #startup is harder

Being a #consultant helping #founders and #productleaders is one of the hardest things I have had to learn.

(And yes, it’s harder than cracking JEE and studying rocket science)!

And it’s far from done, still learning every day.

For a founder or a PM to be good at their job they need a lot of domain understanding.

Not just the tech, but how business is done in that industry.

What are the common problems faced by businesses, trends, regulatory changes, geography specific needs and issues?

What are some of the innovations being used to solve the problems?

What are startups in the space doing?

What are biggies in the space doing?

What are the most important and urgent problems in the sector you are targeting?

The list goes on and on…

If we have to do work that benefits our clients, we need to bring in something they don’t know already.

New insights, new approaches, new ideas and most importantly helping them execute…

Reading up on the tech, product, competition, analyst reports, industry trends is always the starting point.

Most of that information is accessible to everyone.

This takes a lot of time and energy.

Most importantly focus.

Over the years, I have developed some ways to learn fast.

After that we start doing our own primary research through a series of formal and informal surveys and conversations.

Look up everyone in our network who can offer a different perspective or simply corroborate what our clients understand.

This is often fun and exciting.

I often learn much more than I expect to.

Then comes the analysis based on gathering numerical data and building models.

This is tedious and we have to often work with incomplete information.

Larger clients tend to have access to lot of paid research, but startups and smaller companies, rarely do.

Over time, we developed some tricks for getting the information or creative approaches to filing the gaps.

Qualitative analysis and commentary backed by field research and numerical analysis helps us make recommendations with confidence and back it up.

It’s been hard but gratifying work to help companies big and small solve problems and accelerate their growth.

Learning new things every day, every client, with every product has and continues to be the most fun part of the work.