Breaking Free: Essential Product Management Insights

Product management is a pivotal field that intersects business and customer needs, harmonizing them with the technical prowess of a development team. However, it’s an area that’s not without its pitfalls—one in particular being the build trap, a state where the act of production overshadows the purpose and value behind it. Below, we delve into this common quagmire and discuss strategies for escaping it, drawing insights from a seasoned Vice President of Product at HighRadius.

The Pitfall of the Build Trap

At its core, product management focuses on continuously delivering value to the business and its customers. Yet, many teams fall into the build trap, where the outputs—features and updates—take precedence over the outcomes, such as user engagement and satisfaction, ROI, and solving customer pain points. This misalignment can lead to a feature-laden product that fails to resonate with its intended audience.

Recognizing the Signs

Being aware of the build trap is crucial for avoiding it. Product managers risk neglecting user needs by prioritizing stakeholder requests over impact assessment, clear metrics, and end-user engagement.

Framework for Escaping the Trap

Escape the build trap strategically with effective frameworks and a value-focused mindset. Aligning with insights from HighRadius’s VP, prioritize ongoing value for business and customers through strategic product evolution.

Devil in the Details

Understanding the fine-grain details is paramount. Asking “why” five times about each feature and demand can unravel the root cause and necessary outcomes. It’s essential not just to execute orders but to understand their impact thoroughly.

Eye for Detail

A meticulous attention to detail can elevate a product’s potential by ensuring that every aspect is tuned to serve the user’s needs and the company’s goals. Detail-oriented PMs perceive how each element contributes to the broader product vision.

Data-Driven Decisions

Decisions grounded in hard data are more likely to avoid the pitfalls of subjective bias and conjecture. Data provides a common language to unify stakeholders behind a shared goal: creating a product that truly meets the market’s needs.

Emotional Connection

Finally, beyond functionality and data, the emotional resonance of a product with its users cannot be undervalued. Products that evoke a positive emotional response are more likely to gain loyal users and brand advocates.


Escaping the build trap in product management is less about avoiding feature development and more about realigning it with the twin north stars of delivering continuous value and satisfying user needs. Balancing stakeholder requests, curiosity about customer pain points, rigorous questioning, and data-driven innovation is essential. Product management isn’t about releasing many features but strategically aligning business, technology, and people to create exceptional experiences.

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