4. Define the final product

Shubham Upadhyay
2 min readOct 18, 2023

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This article is a part of the 12 lessons from the kitchen table series.

Cooking is a very systematic process; the slightest changes in ingredients or technique can alter the flavor. Even when you follow the recipe to the letter, hand-cooked meals seldom come out the same. The more talented the cook, the higher is the precision with which they can replicate a recipe.

Because it is so difficult to recreate a delicious meal even while following a recipe, one rarely cooks anything good by throwing random ingredients into a pan. To successfully create a good meal, you need to start with a clear vision and then either follow a pre-set recipe or experiment your way to that spread.

And yet we make similar mistakes in our day jobs all the time, below are clear examples of not defining the final product:

  1. Not building a prototype or an MVP
  2. Not talking to your clients
  3. Not answering the “why” behind your features
  4. Not relying on user testing or A/B testing (in the tech world)

To create real value for your clients, you don’t just need to build “a” product but “the right” product for your client. Unlike a straightforward dinner menu, it’s tough to define the right product, but several mature methodologies and tools are available to help you through the process.

An iterative, research-based approach with a clear feedback loop from clients has worked well for me over the years. This approach allows for scope to make mistakes and facilitates continuous improvement. Remember, building a product is hard but building one without a clear vision is impossible.

Originally published at https://www.linkedin.com.

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Shubham Upadhyay
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Senior Engineering Manager @ Amazon | Yale MBA| AI based Ads