Stoicism and Product Management

Tim Ferriss has made Stoicism hip and accessible. That is a good thing. I came across Ryan Holiday via Tim’s podcast, and it rekindled a long lost interest in things Greek philosophy. I have quoted liberally from Ryan’s Daily Stoic. Thanks Ryan and Tim. Buy Ryan’s books and read them.

I reckon Epictetus would have been a brilliant product manager.

He understood prioritization.

“Don’t set your heart on so many things,” says Epictetus. Prioritize. Train your mind to ask: Do I need this thing? What will happen if I do not get it? What if it all happens all at once?

He figured out constraints and not stressing about what you can’t control.

“Some things are in our control and others not. Things in our control are opinion, pursuit, desire, aversion, and, in a word, whatever are our own actions. Things not in our control are body, property, reputation, command, and, in one word, whatever are not our own actions.”

He understood that you can’t build it in a day.

“No thing great is created suddenly, any more than a bunch of grapes or a fig. If you tell me that you desire a fig, I answer you that there must be time. Let it first blossom, then bear fruit, then ripen. “

but he also grokked minimal viable product.

Practice yourself, for heaven’s sake, in little things; and thence proceed to greater.

the power of the open mind.

What is the first business of one who practices philosophy? To get rid of self-conceit. For it is impossible for anyone to begin to learn that which he thinks he already knows.

The buck stops with you

It is the act of an ill-instructed man to blame others for his own bad condition; it is the act of one who has begun to be instructed, to lay the blame on himself; and of one whose instruction is completed, neither to blame another, nor himself.

And my favourites

And are all profited by what they hear, or only some among them? So that it seems that there is an art of hearing as well as one of speaking

 

Nature hath given men one tongue but two ears, that we may hear from others twice as much as we speak

 

 

 

 

 

 

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