Inclusive Product Managers

[Repost from Medium]

My first post started to tease out the idea of “inclusive product development” — the idea that product development can incorporate radical empathy for users in ways that extend beyond personas, and get to the core understanding of how groups of users may use (or be unable to use) your product.

Today, I’ll continue with a brief description of me, as noted in that first post. I’ll keep it brief, because, to be honest, straight white cis men take up too much time & space on the internet already, and while it’s helpful to understand how I got here, I’m not aiming to be the subject of any of these articles.

In short — I spent the first ~6 years of my professional life listening to the stories of others as I engaged in community & labor union organizing all over the USA. I was exposed to a broad set of brave and caring people. I have spent the past ~14 years in tech, primarily in product, and have had the opportunity to work on a global scale, requiring me to continue to think beyond my own experience.

I like to think that my three most important and useful skills as a product person are active listening, care, and empathy. Especially in regards to “inclusive product development”. Why? We’ll explore this in future posts.

Speaking of future posts, beyond articulating more specifics of what Inclusive Product Development is, there are some industries I’m looking forward to exploring in future posts, and how these might incorporate inclusive product ideas.

  • Ride sharing services
  • Short term home rental services
  • Media companies

Again — if you’ve got ideas for industries or companies that are doing inclusive product well or poorly, please let me know.

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