A population of over 360 wells from six shale play areas was investigated to assess the impact of various early production management strategies, with attention given to the time delay between stimulation and first production, the "resting" or "soak" period, the effect of subsequent shut-ins, proppant conductivity and interfacial tension management. Subsets of this population were used to perform the various evaluations. The use of the non-volatile or persistent interfacial tension management chemistry significantly mitigated, but did not prevent, damage arising from delay to first production or shut-ins. Based on the performance metric used, delay to first production is not beneficial. However, based on other data, the likelihood of improvement when using persistent interfacial tension management is slightly better than even odds, but without it, only about one in three. Once on production, if the rate with which the flowing pressure was decreased exceeded about 100 psi per day, a significant negative impact on the reservoir / wellbore connectivity was observed. The last control factor was the obvious benefit derived from using high conductivity proppants, in conjunction with the persistent interfacial tension management.