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INSPIRED: How to Create Tech Products Customers Love

4.25  ·  Rating details ·  14,547 ratings  ·  874 reviews

How do today’s most successful tech companies—Amazon, Google, Facebook, Netflix, Tesla—design, develop, and deploy the products that have earned the love of literally billions of people around the world? Perhaps surprisingly, they do it very differently than the vast majority of tech companies. In INSPIRED, technology product management thought leader Marty Cagan provides

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Kindle Edition, 349 pages
Published November 20th 2017 by Wiley (first published January 1st 2008)
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Average rating 4.25  · 
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 ·  14,547 ratings  ·  874 reviews


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Adam Wiggins
Jan 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: business
"Inspired" is a well-written, thorough, and down-to-earth work covering all aspects of product management at software companies.

To paraphrase/summarize: the job of the product manager is to discover a product that is useful, feasible, and valuable. They do this through understanding users and potential users in detail and evaluating opportunities to solve problems for those users. Once an opportunity is identified, they create a prototype, validate the prototype with users, then work with engine
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Ellen Chisa
I'm embarrassed to say I hadn't read this book until today. I's pretty a concise summary of all the other articles, books, and conversations that I've had in the field. You could probably save a lot of time by reading this book when you're first interested in PM, rather than after doing it for four years. (But re-read it then, too!)

I particularly liked that he discussed:

- Clear definition of role separation and responsibilities of marketing, PM, interaction design, development.
- The emphasis on
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Chris Kang
Inspired is pretty high level and tends to focus more on the organizational challenges related to product development. I feel that there are some better resources out there (especially online blogs) if you as a product manager are looking for strong guidance at a more tactical level. Although, the SVPG website has some useful resources. I kept putting off reading this book, and after having experienced the growing pains as a PM and other major organizational transitions, most of the insights the ...more
Disha
Dec 10, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Picked up this book after a great review in Economic Times. The content is very disappointing to say the least. The author has missed on several key responsibilities and challenges of product management and has only penned a theoretical and ideal world description. The book does not talk in examples and almost sounds like a boring lecture. Not for beginners and surely not for veterans either. Disappoint s.
Maria Lasprilla
Jan 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: strategy
It wouldn't be so sexy or approved by the marketing department, but a more accurate name for this book would be "Product Management 101". Recommended. ...more
Adam Zabell
Feb 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: business
tl;dr - products need prototypes, are grounded in answering emotions, and can always be improved.

Product management starts with this book. If you want be one, start here, then go find something that talks about the products in your field of interest, or describes the process by which you get yourself hired, or the way you raise capital to fund your own product. But, start here to learn what it means to build a product quickly and successfully.

Not that you're guaranteed success. Especially when y
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Peter Gfader
I don't know but the content seems to be dated.

Examples:


>> Once you've validated a product and delivered the specifications to engineering, you must make a fundamental mindset shift from product discovery to execution.
>> There should be no further changes to the product specifications after this.

1. This clear distinction between discovery and delivery seems very old thinking to me.
2. When do we write the specification?
3. No further changes to the product spec after this?
4. Lots of dedicated r
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Graham
Feb 26, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Possibly one of very few books actually written all about Product Management, and it's a good one. I love how it starts with a bunch of things that people think are Product Management but which aren't. I also like the simple framework and definition of PM around valuable+useable+feasible, and how he builds up detail on achieving those qualities through the book. Got a bit dry as it came towards the end, but was a good length. Highly recommend for anyone in or thinking of moving into PM. ...more
Jenn
Mar 30, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The information in the book was good and useful to learn how things work or should work on a product team, but the delivery was a little slow and dry.

Stefan Kanev
May 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book has been a wake up call.

It presents a unified philosophy of what the job of a product manager is and how to do it well. It covers who the people should be, how the product should be built, what the process should be and what is the right culture. The book is structured into 67 short chapters and can be consumed in small bites or long binges. The style is concise and to the point.

I can't overstate how eye-opening it was. The role of the product management has always been slightly weird
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Goce
Feb 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of the best books I have read in a while. It got me thinking about a lot of stuff that’s going on in our industry and it also helped me bridge the gap in my transition from a company oriented on providing services to clients to a company owning their own product and oriented towards keeping their customers happy and improving their product. Although I am not a Product Manager (which is the main intended audience), I would say that I am at the best point in my career to have read this book an ...more
Nilesh Patil
I wish it could have added more information about how to build the products. This book basically (most of the pages) talk about how to build teams, hire right people and other backoffice related information rather than focusing much on customer mindset, product life cycle, discovery, applying market research etc.
Markiyan
Sep 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The best book on Product Management I've ever read. Not only you get a depth and years of experience and wisdom in your hand, but it's also so incredibly well structured! Definitely will come back to this book again and again. Must read for a PM. ...more
Leonardo Andreucci
A must read for anyone involved in building digital products, not only Product Managers but also software engineers, tech leads, team leaders, engineering managers and so on. For every reading session I had lots of insights to share with our team!
Petar Ivanov
Apr 13, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: startups, product
Really great book! It presents what's to be a Product Manager/Owner and how to do it well. It describes the whole puzzle in a product company, starting from the VPs, going through the engineers and designers and finishing with the product manager(s), marketing and sales departments.

There are several key points but the most vital one is to create a high-fidelity prototype, defining your customer personas and start talking and interviewing your customers/early-adopters.
It's important to mention h
...more
Timon Ruban
Jul 24, 2020 rated it really liked it
In the last few weeks I kept asking other product leaders what book they thought I should read to learn about product management. If I were to make a histogram of the responses, you’d need a magnifying glass to see what the other books than this one were.

Inspired is an easy read with lots of valuable advice. Cagan is a big fan of spelling out lists (here are the X things you need to consider for Y). I am an engineer who likes to put thoughts into boxes and order and reorder them until they fit,
...more
Philip Joubert
Mar 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
I'm frustrated with myself that I didn't read this many moons ago. This is the book for you if you are:
- An aspiring product manager
- Work with product managers (e.g. you're a software engineer or designer)
- You're building out a product team
- You are interested in how modern tech teams structure themselves
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Abhinav Krishna
Some useful bits. But mostly a disconnected collection of best PM practices.
Raphael Donaire
Jun 30, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The author shared a lot of good examples and practices in product management. If you don't have experience with the subject, the book will be useful. The content doesn't have a logical structure, and sometimes, you could feel lost.

The main highlights I would share at this review are:

1. Outcomes are better than outputs. In a transition of project mindset for a product one, the orgazination should stop seeking deadlines and roadmap deliverables beside that it should look for business models innova
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David Gundlach
Dec 28, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Rightly called the "standard reference" for management of digital products. Lots of hands-on advise and methods that can be used when building digital products. Definitely inspiring. I particularly liked the concept of the "Customer reference program".

Only 4 stars, because the book often assumed ideal circumstances and resources that may be available at Google, Facebook etc. but certainly not at smaller startups. E.g. "Talk to your product marketing manager" or "get your user research departmen
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KC
Dec 01, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a very useful, textbook-like rundown of tech product management. With principles distilled from industry leaders, nearly every facet of product management is covered here.

Unlike some other similar books, this one is not anecdotal or autobiographical but rather focuses on the process, the responsibilities, and the skills and sensibilities required to succeed in the product space.

I took many notes from the book and worked them into training and material for my current job, and expect to re
...more
Veronica Moss
Jul 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: work-business
A friend recommended this book to me, and I'm glad she did - it was an informative read about product management at a software company. As someone with a background in psychology, sociology and business, I walked away learning many new things about innovation and product development process. Recommended if you are working in tech, particularly if you are a business person @ a tech company. ...more
Vanderlei Alves
Jul 22, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
A straightforward, quality guide to product management, or how to create a structure that can effectively and sustainably develop products with value.
Տիգրան Ղաբուզյան
A bible for product managers.
Brodie Gron
The rule of business books: they're all thoroughly 3-stars. ...more
Abhïshék Ghosh
1. Golden rules for product managers: half our product ideas don't work because of problems with
o Value: customers aren't as excited and choose not to pay for it or buy it
o Usability: too complicated to use and is more trouble than it is worth
o Feasibility: the organization simply can't afford the cost and time to deliver the product
o Business viability: legal, financial or business constraints that block the solution from launch

2. How do you discover new ideas: Opportunity Assessment Technique
...more
Vinicius Oyama
Oct 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great book not only for product managers but for anyone that wants to better understand the overall work dynamics required for creating innovative products.
The books explains not only the required skills that a good project manager must have but also the proccess that drives disrupting companies, other roles that must exists, what they should do and how they must interact with each other in order to bring order in the chaos that is the journey of seeking for a market fit, scaling your product a
...more
Ben
Dec 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A pretty speedy read, but a great introduction to Product Management and the breadth of skills and responsibilities of the role. What Cagan says makes a huge amount of sense, and you’ll be very quick to recognise the things your own employer is getting right (or, more likely, wrong) when it comes to discovering and building its products.

There’s a tonne of actionable advice here, although lots of it is probably best done with further tactical materials, which will be readily available online.

My o
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Neil Sharma
Overall: Maybe worth a skim for a new Product Manager.

The title "Inspired, how to create tech products customers love," does not align with the content. This book tells you how to be a product manager and talks nothing about building great products (aside from repeatedly mentioning to "talk to customers"). A better title would be "High level advice on being a Product Manager at a large internet company"

There is a lot of generic guidance on how to product manage in large scale consumer/enterprise
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Sebastian Gebski
4.5-5 stars

Don't mind the terrible title, this is a truly decent book on product management or even better - product-focused organizations.

Pros:
1. Marty himself - not an anonymous person, some sort of guru for angel investors, very credible; I've met him ~3 yrs ago in Budapest & he made a great impression of a person who clearly knows what he's speaking about
2. no bullshit -> short, focused chapters, each one with a clear point, without lengthy digressions & drifting around
3. this book doesn't
...more
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