What is “Seeing The Matrix” For A Product Leader?
You know that iconic scene, at the end of The Matrix (the original!), when Neo suddenly “gets it.” He picks bullets out of thin air as if they are cute and curious little things. As the next installment of The Matrix comes out I’ve been thinking, what’s the equivalent of “seeing the matrix” for product leaders? This question prompted me to jot down a few things i’ve observed or learned (and a lot that I am still trying to learn) that I feel very strongly about, but I thought it would be a fun brainstorm: what essential realizations cause product leaders to see every challenge and opportunity differently?
That data helps you iterate, but only vision and clearly articulated strategy (and luck on timing) help you leapfrog. Both are important, but neither is sustainable on its own.
That an incumbent can only keep winning if they realize they are now an underdog. It is this inflection in perspective that enables a company to continue leading a category rather than be disrupted. It requires i…