Hey all!

I'm actively hiring for 6 Product roles at Inspire (Director, Sr. and PM levels) in both our Santa Monica, CA and our Philadelphia PA offices.

We’re building the world's most intelligent home climate experience. Using integrated hardware, software, and clean energy product that powers the customers homes and optimizes the energy performance for a simple flat rate every month. We’re essentially turning the utility world on it’s head.

Drop me a note and your resume at cbrereton(at)helloinspire.com or connect with me on linkedin.

While I agree on the other answers, I would like to add another view (which is a little bit pointing at what Jennifer said)

Compare the "bad" idea to other ideas, and ask back, what idea he/she would choose. Ask the same questions you would ask yourself, but in an integrative way -> let the suggester participate in the evaluation process of the idea. Maybe in the end he/she might say: "oh well, maybe this idea needs some readjustments".

But, as many already said, don't say yes just to be polite. That would be impolite towards all other people burning for a good idea to be implemented.

What is one thing you wished you knew before you started your career in product management?

Hey Bryan,

The second question is especially important, as it can sometimes be a long journey to become a Product Manager.

"What are the do's and don'ts when trying to get into product management?"


  • Product Management is hard and there are so many variables you've got to manage. Build your PM toolbox by studying the theory and learning as many new tools as possible.
  • Become well versed at explaining the above ^. Your ability to clearly explain with examples will help you get into the job.
  • Get as many proven 'wins' under your belt as possible - this is the way you're going to move up in your career.
  • Get your network right...know everyone. The network will often make and break you.
  • It's been said 1000 times before, but know your customer. There is no excuse for not understanding them.


  • Rush. Being a good Product Manager comes through time in the job. Going through the high's and low's and living through it.
  • Don't try to be everything to everyone. Shine as a Product Manager and don't be tempted to do peoples jobs for them. This is especially important if you came from say, a BA role before you became a Product Manager. It can be tempting to slip back into that role to get things done faster. This ultimately takes you away from what is most important, the customer.

"What is something you wish someone would have told you before your PM career got started?"

  • A LOT of companies don't truly understand the Product Management role. Be careful to pick the right company who understands this. Otherwise, you'll be spending a significant amount of time in a 'Transformation' role.

What are good methods for naming products?

If people give you advice on naming products in a manner that helps build a brand, ask them if they have ever read scientific studies on the topic. I have encountered dozens of self-appointed "experts" who have never read a single scientific study on the topic but have plenty of intuitions and opinions.

If you want to build a brand, choose a name that is short, alliterative, memorable, and does not directly describe what the product does. Yes, the science shows names that do not directly describe the product are more likely to foster brand recall, brand affinity, and word of mouth.

The key concept is called "incongruity". When the mind encounters a name incongruent with its expectations, it expends effort to resolve the incongruity. That effort can include such mental activities as discovering or fabricating a reason for the name, and success in that effort activates the reward centers in the brain, creating a positive association with the brand. The "pride" in resolving the incongruity or encountering the off-the-wall name can also lead a person to mention it to other people.

I wrote about it (and cited one of several scientific studies) all the way back in 2005. Here is another study.

It just so happens that this advice aligns with what two of the world's foremost marketing experts have advised. Al Ries said the "biggest mistake a marketer can make is to pick a brand name that defines the category". Seth Godin blogged that a "brand name is a peg that people use to hang all the attributes of your business. The LESS it has to do with your category, the better."

When will you support a mobile responsive website for Aha! or have a native app?

Another follow-up: Aha! mobile is now available for Android. 🎉

Launch post: https://blog.aha.io/aha-mobile-android

Download Aha! mobile on Google Play