What is the Unseen Killer of Product Success

What is the Unseen Killer of Product Success?

It was late on Friday when the CEO called an emergency meeting. Tensions were high as the team huddled in the conference room, PROJECT PHOENIX in crisis mode after another missed deadline.

“What’s going on here? We have some of the brightest minds, an awesome product vision, and plenty of resources,” the CEO fumed. “So why can’t we get this launch back on track?”

Sheepish looks were exchanged until the lead developer spoke up. “Well…to be honest, there’s been a lot of miscommunication and confusion around the requirements.”

The product manager’s head slumped, recognizing a harsh truth – their communication was absolutely terrible. Broken processes, unclear messaging, and constant rework; it was crippling their efforts.

You see, poor communication is an unseen relationship assassin that poisons teams and derails products from the inside out. Yet communication is the quintessential skill that separates good products from great ones.

Behind the scenes


Understanding user requirements is the key to successful communication. Every word you speak is like a seed planted, harvesting consequences whether fruitful or rotten. Becoming hyper-intentional about understanding user needs, and then effectively communicating how your product addresses them, cultivates breakthrough products.

The highest achievers are those with great ideas who can convey them powerfully. When you obsess over understanding a problem and communicating its solution, people will chase you down to pay for that insight.

So if you are a product owner, product manager, or aspiring for those roles, improving communication skills centered around understanding user requirements is utterly essential for your success and income potential. When you can truly understand customer and user needs, and then wrap that into a crystal clear vision, you become invaluable.

The leaders who achieve monumental wins are the ones who take the time to:

  1. Deeply understand the core problems through diligent questioning and immersive learning

  2. Carefully construct messaging that provides a clear vision and direction

  3. Deliver that messaging through powerful communication vehicles

For them, it’s an endless cycle of curiosity, synthesizing insights, and broadcasting solutions.

Here’s a simple tool to start sharpening your own communication skills today:

  • Take 15 minutes to write down the top 3 problems, needs, or headaches your product is trying to solve for users.

  • Spend 15 more minutes mind-mapping all the ways your offering addresses those core issues.

  • Then practice communicating that perspective out loud, with laser focus and clarity, as if explaining it to a newcomer. The more you make communication a mindful practice, the more it will become a natural strength.

You’ll know your messaging is effective when your audience takes action on your words. Make communication a core capability, and you’ll set yourself and your product up to flourish.

This brings us to tomorrow’s lesson also related to the power of communication.

You won’t want to miss it.

Stay tuned!

Dejan Majkic, MA in CS&IT