To me, a system in steady-state is a good thing. Input turns to output in a known steady form. A productive and efficient factory in the works.
This is where I want to see myself, on that steady linear growth pattern.
However, every once in a while there is a need for some exponential growth. Something exceptional... Get more output from the input you usually give.
Disrupt the System
You probably know this story one way or another: A huge multi-million dollars deal was just signed, a new partnership or acquisition took place or any other tectonic plates movement. Excitement is all around and you foresee the knock on the door...
"Dear Product Manager, change the roadmap, double the tasks with same amount of people, design and develop new features some of them involve new technology and zero 'know-how' by you and the team".
The first wave of feelings come to heart includes despair, anger and "why the hell do I need all this", right?! Well, yes... But let's talk about the second wave of feelings that should come to heart, and at this time also the first sense that should come to mind.
This is a breakthrough option, a growth potential for the Product. New use-cases maybe, new markets, new customers.
In normal times, routine, the product (and the company if we take a higher perspective) is making steady growth and improvement, assuming everything is on the right track. New feature is followed by new feature, bug fix by bug fix. Roadmap is built by customer demand, and sometimes even innovative ideas from within the team. Revolutions are uncommon. Pivoting is rare. The product is lighted by smooth neon lights but not by a powerful spotlight.
Under the Spotlight
An event like this creates the opportunity to turn the spotlight on. Surly it holds its fare share of risks but the breakthrough option usually overcome them.
While I was working in different army and Intelligence agencies, we used to say that during couple of days or weeks of a national crisis (that usually was forced on us by enemies and caught us by surprise), we were able to build the entire roadmap we planned for that year and more...
Threat Turns into an Opportunity
Embrace what is coming, role up your sleeves and say "thank you" that you have the chance for that breakthrough and growth. What do you know, it will definitely push the envelope for the Product and new-exciting things will surely happen.