Startup Saturday April 2017 took off with some of the best product people in Bangalore sharing their thoughts and experiences on building great products. Here are the key pointers from the session:

Rahul Goyal

VP – Product Development. Turbotax at Intuit


  • For those of you who’ve read the Lean Startup, you’d know that Intuit has a very startup like approach to their products. One could almost call Intuit a 30 year old startup by virtue of their approach to building products.
  • Building great products requires a problem solving mindset coupled with a great set of fundamentals.
  • Having deep customer empathy and watching customers struggle is part of the process of building great products.
  • Wow products delight customers!
  • As an organisation grows larger, it’s a common tendency for senior management to become distant from the customer. The CEO at Intuit still takes customer support calls! Always talk to customers.
  • Get uncomfortably narrow and nail it! It’s important to continuously refine and make variations.
  • Let data be your guide.
  • Every customer is unique, you’ll need the product to be dynamic.
  • Create own-able moments: A moment in a product where a customer is experiencing a change or escalation of emotion.
  • In a nutshell: Find an important, unsolved customer problem, that you and those you enable can solve well, and build a durable competitive advantage.

 

Vinay Dixit

Director of Experience Design – Adobe


  • Look at yourself as someone who teaches computers about human beings.
  • The world is moving towards an experience economy.
  • Focus on invoking an emotion to create an experience.
  • Experiences are subjective, relative and largely non-quantifiable.
  • Experiences are in the small things. Experience are in the big things too.
  • Experiences can change behaviour (video).
  • Great movies offer great experiences and one can learn a lot from them.
  • Think of how you can surprise the user.
  • Users use products, people live lives. Where does your product fit in?
  • Make it fun and visual.
  • Users look for instant gratification.
  • Humor and wit are great, if used wisely.

 

Panel

Raghu Lakkapragada – COO, Voonik
Ranjit Radhakrishnan – CPO, Byju’s
Arnav Kumar – AVP, Saif Partners
Arindam Mukherjee – Director of Product and Growth, Flipkart


  • People have needs and wants. Great products eliminate friction and allow them to do things they desire.
  • Don’t have a 100 features in the first go. Focus on depth first, you can grow breadth-wise after you have nailed one objective.
  • Design will never be perfect. It’s an iterative process.
  • Make sure the platform is dynamic and built for iteration.
  • Metrics are subjective. Find one that makes sense to your business.
  • It’s important to learn from data. Make sure the data is clean.
  • Understand why something failed and what assumptions are false.
  • Common mistakes:
    • Startups underestimate differentiation [You have more in common with the incumbent that people think].
    • Don’t read Techcrunch if the product’s for India.
    • Be 10x better than direct and indirect competitors.
    • At the very least, insight and clarity of thought should be 10x better.