I was never much of an athlete. In high school my gym elective was ‘walking’ (which consisted mostly of walking to Starbucks to grab a latte and stroll back to school). I have horrible coordination and if someone throws a ball in my direction I’d rather duck than try and catch it.

Do not mistake me for a couch potato. I love hiking (and was a tour guide for a few years), I always prefer walking to driving, I practice Yoga for almost 20 years by now, but I was never a jock. So how did I end up running?

Start


and more importantly- why should you?

When I was learning to write the alphabet my grandfather gave me tasks to write the same letter over and over again till he decided it was legible. He used to grade every line of letters with a red pencil and correct my letters as if we were practicing for a calligraphy contest. I did not always enjoy these tedious tasks (though much love and attention was in them) and he used to recite to me that it does not matter that I can write if no one can read my writing.

My grandfather’s advice comes to mind whenever I…


Working remotely requires us more than ever to assume no mal-intentions

Lately we moved our team’s daily standup to around 14:00 because it’s nap time for most of our young ones and there is a higher chance for us all to be available. I begin most of my mornings before 6 am, very quietly making coffee to start working before my kids wake up. It is the most quiet time of the day. Once they wake up we start the day’s shifts between me and my partner, dividing the day between work and play with the kids and some days returning to work again when the kids fall asleep at night.


How we managed to get my little sister back home in the middle of the Corona pandemic crisis

My little sister is 14.5 years younger than I am. Though she is 23 years old, for me she is always my little sister. In November 2019 she embarked a journey to South America with her boyfriend. Travelling from Argentina to Chile, Brazil, Galapagos Islands they were basically having the time of their lives with giant turtles, sharks and all the wonders of nature surrounding her.

My sister and her boyfriend had another dream they hoped to turn into a reality- to get to Antartica. So when they heard a boat was leaving Argentina and the ticket prices were cheaper…


Product in the time of Corona

Product managers need to handle ambiguity. We are never really sure if the product we are building is the right fit for the market. We check the competition, validate hypotheses, measure and A/B test but there is always some element that remains unknown as we are handling prediction of the future. We assume we know who will use our products and how they will use them. We think we can predict their needs and wishes and can provide the answers to them.

David Hume explained to us in 1739 that the problem of induction is that we think that the…


Learning new skills

My son recently started swimming lessons. He is extremely bright and most new things are easy for him to grasp, but swimming is not. He developed his own dog paddle style of swimming which allows him to move forward but would not work for longer distances and is not energy efficient. It is not easy for him to learn breaststroke swimming (he especially hates putting his head underwater).

This dog mastered underwater bubbles. From the wonderful book by Seth Casteel

Sitting by the pool watching the instructor explain how to blow bubbles underwater I realised that a similar process happens to all when we need to acquire a new skill. If we…


How running down a mountain on my honeymoon taught me the value of being decisive

About 7 years ago my husband and I were looking for a honeymoon destination. We were not big fans of lying on the beach and doing nothing (this was before we had kids) and we were looking for an adventure. We decided to climb the Kilimanjaro (one of the seven summits).

Kilimanjaro after 3 days of climbing

On the third day of the climb up my husband got food poisoning. What could be dismissed with some stomach ache at home, turned out to be quite dangerous at that altitude and he developed altitude sickness. It soon became clear to us that we need to get to…


Swimming lessons in red oceans

Last week I attended a conference in London. As I was walking between the different companies’ booths I could not help but notice they were all using the same buzz words, very similar design, repeating colours and even the fonts were identical. It made me wonder about our obsession with blue oceans and what could be the differentiation factor when building a product in a what turns to be a red ocean?

What is your unique value proposition?

First I should admit that I don’t believe in searching blue oceans as a strategy any more than I believe that I would become rich by filling out…


You are building your product for diverse audience, why not present them in your product illustrations?

I love illustrations. I have several children’ books in languages I don’t read just because I love the pictures, the style, the colours and the characters. I find that you can explain with a good illustration what you cannot explain in a thousand words (and the artistic value is higher than a shutterstock image).

This is why when I started working with the talented Shaked Sheinman I could not be happier. Finally a kindred-soul who would understand my passion to have illustrations in my products. A most powerful addition to simplify and explain to the user what they need to…


Are we building a project or a product?

About 2 years ago I joined a promising hyper growth start-up after many years in the corporate world. I was looking for the excitement of building new products from scratch and the thrill involved in doing it all very quickly with limited resources (or as an old friend defined it, ‘paving the road while driving it at 180 mph’); I got all of that and more. …

Sivan Yaron-Enden

Sivan is a product manager with a passion to understand user needs and find creative ways to answer them.

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