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Matthew Zammit, Founder and Fractional Chief Product Officer for Start-ups at Know Your Social, on Monday brought attention to the two main reasons through which product strategies fail to materialise into results.

He started off by pointing out that a clear product strategy explains “what big buckets and pillars” a business leader will work on for their business – and its products – to be “the best” in the market.

“More than anything, it should give you an indisputable idea of what things you’re going to say ‘no’ to and what you are going to obsess over,” he added.

Matthew Zammit / LinkedIn
Matthew Zammit / LinkedIn

Despite this, he notes that from his experience in consulting for start-ups at Know Your Social, he has met “very few companies” that actually “feel good about their product strategy”. Mr Zammit pointed out that this is primarily because of two key reasons: unclear focus and lack of clarity.

Firstly, he explained that this happens when there is a “lot of focus on the short term”.

“When you don’t have a clear view of the future, any direction can take you there, and at the end of the quarter, you look back and wonder how you didn’t achieve anything useful,” he continued.

Additionally, Mr Zammit remarked that a lack of confidence in the product strategy also emerges when there is a “lack of clarity” on how to have a good strategy in the first place.

“Most of the time, this is the job of a Product Leader to align the whole organisation behind a clear direction. But unfortunately, the daily tactical jobs distract them from getting this done,” he explained.

“Lately, I found myself getting asked by more founders for support on how to set up a solid product strategy to align the whole team. This is really making a big different at prioritising against what’s important and at focusing and empowering the team to work on what can make an impact,” he concluded.

Mr Zammit has more than 15 years of experience in product, marketing, and mentoring, and has helped various teams and start-ups with different aspects related to product. He holds a Master of Science in Informatics and Web Accessibility and a Bachelor of Science in Business and Computing, both from University of Malta, as well as a Professional Diploma in Digital Marketing from the Digital Marketing Institute. He also completed a six-month online digital marketing and future leadership course developed with Google.

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