04 June 2017


John Cutler talks with Dave Rael about enabling builders and teams, order takers vs value makers, the role of product management, and rewards of building

John Cutler is keenly focused on user experience and evidence-driven product development. He mixes and matches various methodologies — jobs-to-be-done, Lean UX, Lean Startup, customer development, and design thinking — to help teams deliver lasting outcomes for their customers. John is currently Senior Product Manager for Search and Relevance at Zendesk. As a former UX researcher at AppFolio, a product manager at Pendo.io, AdKeeper and RichFX, a startup founder, and a product team coach, John has a perspective that spans individual roles, domains, and products. His viral enthusiasm has been heard through speaking engagements at Agile 2015, Heart of Agile Philadelphia (2016), and various ProductCamps (Vancouver, Los Angeles, Raleigh NC) and MeetUps (Santa Barbara, Los Angeles, New York). Mixing in some less-than-typical experiences — driving rickshaws in NYC, and touring the US with “five other weird creative people in a van playing music” — John blogs prolifically about collaboration, product development, diversity, UX research, lean startup, and user experience. Some notable posts include The Evolving Product Manager Role, Persona(s) Non Grata, 12 Signs You’re Working in a Feature Factory, and Stop Setting Up Product Roadmaps To Fail.

John's top 3 tips for delivering more value:
  1. Figure out a way to pick up the phone and call the customer directly - get direct feedback
  2. Think about a world where you're not an order taker - where you are the value maker
  3. Resist premature optimization in terms of process and routine - be flexible and resilient

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