There is no business like flow business

There is no business like Show Business, the famous Irving Berlin song, written for the 1946 musical Annie Get Your Gun, reminds us. The song describes the thrill, excitement and dazzle one witnesses working in Show Business.

I am a firm believer and would advocate that working in product, the song is an extremely fitting one.

How comes and why are you saying such a gibberish you ask?

Well here is why, explained through a reinterpretation of the song, that would make even Weird Al Yankovic blush, to demonstrate the Product Business is very much like Show Business.

That it may become your anthem and sway your stakeholders whilst delivering products your customers will love!

There’s no business like flow business
Like no business I know

Working in product and being successful requires a strong flow. Being it running through a discovery phase or implementing and growing a product, being it understanding customer needs or tailoring the product vision to companies’ shifting direction, delivering a quality product requires flow.

Everything about it is appealing
Everything the Product Manager will allow

The Product Manager plays a key role in making of the product that what the user needs it to be. The Product Manager is responsible for creating the Product Vision, works closely with UX, Development and the customer and is the gatekeeper of the product. Though allow might sound strong, the product manager is accountable for continuously pushing the product in the right direction, bringing stakeholders along and needs to be able to say No to plenty of good ideas.

Nowhere could you get that happy feeling
When you are stealing
That extra customer

There is a good chance you will find yourself creating a product, battling with rivals over a specific customer group. It is extremely motivating to know that what you have created is what sets your product apart from your competition. How do you know you are succesful? By “stealing” customers from your rival.

There’s no people like Product people
They smile when they are low

It takes a special group of people delivering products, a group of people that understands the product vision, operate as a well oiled machine and trust each other that they will succeed!

Yesterday they told you you would not go far
That night you launch and there you are
Next day on your dressing room they want the northstar
Let’s go on with the show

Delivering a product goes with ups and downs, it is about experimentation, discovery and understanding that not all ideas will be launched. Once it happens, it will reenergize those involved, to reach the North Star.

The costumers, the scenery, the stand-ups, the props
The team that lifts you when you’re down
The headaches, the heartaches, the backaches, the flops
The people who hate it when you didn’t implement that dropdown

So much to be done in product, so many stakeholders, so many meetings, so much terminology and politics to manoeuvre around. Remember that though the rewards of working in product are huge, there will always be someone disappointed. Make sure to let them down easy

The launch when your heart beats like a drum
The closing when the customers won’t come

All products will go through a product lifecycle, what is launched today will one day not be viable and decline. You will have to continuously evaluate and ensure investments are done to maximize value.

There’s no business like flow business
Like no business I know

Working in product and being successful requires a strong flow. Being it running through a discovery phase or implementing and growing a product, being it understanding customer needs or tailoring the product vision to companies’ shifting direction, delivering a quality product requires flow.

You get word before the launch has started
That your favourite feature is down
Top of that, the Git Branch isn’t merged
It truly hurts
But you go on

First off, make sure you deliver reusable, scalable, diagnosable and secure features and do so in a predictable way. Having said that if there is one thing working in product will learn you, it is that their will always be surprises, so you might want to buckle up and embrace some chaos along the way. Solutioning and not shying away to resolve unexpected challenges, should come naturally for you.

There’s no people like show people
They smile when they are low

It takes a special group of people delivering products, a group of people that understands the product vision, operate as a well oiled machine and trust each other that they will succeed!

Even with a product that you know will fold
You may be stranded out in the cold
Still you wouldn’t ‘change for a sack of gold
Let’s go on with the flow
Let’s go on with the flow

Persistence, determination, direction. Product people go for it and the reality is that yes, sometimes products fold.

So there you have it and always remind yourself

“The hours may be long, but you’ll never feel so invigorated as you do when working on a (new) Product with a great team. There’s no business like flow business, baby!”

I hope you have enjoyed the reinterpretation and make sure to get the free guide linked in this article. For now I salute all you product People, singing off K. Hermans for Sharpwitted.ninja.

p.s. if you are interested in the original song please find the link below, for your convenience:

Orginal: Irving Berlin, Etherl Merman — There’s No Business Like Show Business

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