11 Rules Product Analyst Should Be Following Every Day
Time is everything.
To compete in the global market you need to deliver the right product to the right audience at the right time and a product analyst is the one the players of the team that helps to accomplish this.
I would call us coach assistants. We are helping our coach (Product Manager / Product Owner) to lead our team to success. And for bringing value we need time, skills, and a clear mind, so let’s talk about things that can help you to be a trusted adviser for your PM and succeed as a team on an everyday basis:
1. Analytics process starts with understanding the task. Help stakeholders to understand the task. What kind of problem are they trying to solve? Why do they want to solve it? Is this the best question that we want to ask? Is it worth your time? Could it bring a significant amount of value?
2. Think about how can you deliver results faster. Suppose you have a task and sometimes it can take a few weeks before PM will see the first results. Talk with PM, maybe you can rephrase the question, simplify it, and deliver approximate results in a day. Of course, it will be less precise, but maybe it will be enough for PM and those results can change the direction of further research. Another option is to share insights and thoughts with PM in the middle of the research, collect feedback, and continue your research.
3. Minimize your routine. Automate your daily routine:
create Tableau(Power BI, etc) dashboards for monitoring;
create alerts for production incidents;
create reusable SQL templates/queries (main steps in funnels, frequently asked questions from the team, queries for incidents/drops, etc) to construct your queries faster and to be able to share those queries with the product or other analysts.
This will save you time.
4. Prioritize. Is this the most important/valuable thing that you can do right now?
5. Share insights/results with the team (external and internal). Keep the fire in your relationship with a team :) It’s important to share the insights with the team to increase involvement and feel of ownership. They will see how their efforts impact the business. On another side, if we see drops in some metrics they can help you in identifying weak places in the product.
From the other side, you can share results/improvements with external teams and management to build a positive team image and share experience between different departments.
6. Be a product owner. Know your product. Know your numbers. It’s important to see the full picture and raise strategic questions to the team. Don’t be afraid to improve things that were done a long time ago. Take care about product as your own child, current problems, future, etc, but don’t forget about real child :)
7. Data/insight presentation as an end product. Usually, we spend most of our time on data processing and analysis, but we don’t spend a lot of time on data presentation and stakeholder persuasion. Our stakeholders are busy and it’s necessary to share insights with them in the best way possible, so it’s important to prepare for this step in the data analysis process.
8. Double check your data. Compare data with your expectations and general numbers, analyze data from top to bottom and bottom-up, ask for code reviews from your peers.
9. Challenge your Product Managers. If we talking about the AB test and hypothesis, ask about the user problem we are trying to solve, how we detected it, and if this the best solution for this hypothesis. Be like Yoda from Star Wars.
10. Spread data stories. We often deliver insights to people who are not very comfortable with numbers and statistics, so it is important to know how to present the data in a way that makes sense to them. One of the tools is data storytelling.
“Sometimes reality is too complex. Stories give it form.” (c) Jean Luc Godard
11. Have fun. Product analyst with a sad face can scare people, so try to smile more and don’t forget to have fun during/after work! :)