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Zero-Based Thinking in Product Management

Zero-based thinking is a decision-making process where you ignore past investments in a project or product and focus on what you would do if you were starting from zero today. It helps in avoiding the sunk cost fallacy and making decisions that are best for the current situation.

Example

At Google, zero-based thinking might be applied when deciding whether to continue developing a feature for Google Ads. Despite previous investments, if the feature no longer meets market needs or aligns with the company's strategic goals, they might decide to pivot or discontinue development, focusing resources on more promising initiatives.