Know All About What Does a Product Manager Do?

Know All About What Does a Product Manager Do

Product managers have one of the coolest jobs out there, and everyone seems to want to be one. Even though people often overlook how important they are, they’re actually super respected and well-liked in the business world. Tons of MBA students dream of landing a product management job.

Because so many people are interested, colleges are even starting to offer special courses and majors just for product management. So, what exactly is a product manager? Let’s dive in and find out.

Who is a Product Manager?

A Product Manager stands at the intersection between business and technology, and servers as the middle person between the two. Their purpose is to interpret business goals to the engineering teams, and to report on product development progress to superiors.

That makes the The job sounds easy, but standing at the intersection affects many tasks, tools, relationships, and strategies. And meetings. Always a lot of meetings!

Product Managers are often perplex with Project Managers, but that is not very true. The main discrepancy lies in the number of responsibility and accountability these two roles entail. If someone goes seriously unfair during product development, the buck usually stops with the Product Manager.

Who is a Product Manager?
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People often say a Product Manager is like the boss of the product, but that’s not exactly right. This comparison is mostly because both the boss (CEO) and Product Manager need to know a lot about their company or product. They work with different teams, keep the vision of the company or product in mind, and are responsible for its success.

However, saying a Product Manager is the boss gives them a level of power they don’t really have. If an engineer doesn’t agree with them, the Product Manager has to persuade them, not order them around.

We like to think of a Product Manager more like the leader of a band. They might know how to play some instruments but can’t play them all. Instead, they lead the musicians to create beautiful music together.

Product Manager Skills

To successfully complete their responsibilities, product managers must contain several skills.

These include both soft and hard skills and contribute to the product manager’s ability to lead, make decisions and be more successful in their job role. The following are the top skills that product managers are expected to have:

1. Communication skills

Product managers talk or write a lot every day. They have meetings, give presentations, and chat with clients to share what they want and expect. They also need to keep talking to their team to guide them and make sure everything is going as planned. Being good at communicating is super important for product managers to do their job well.

2. Technical expertise

Product managers who work with virtual products, such as software and apps, often require basic if not extensive technical knowledge.

They must be able to work with the engineers on their team to recognize performance bugs and assure the product is up to par in terms of function, design and user experience.

3. Business skills

Many product managers require to understand basic business skills to effectively do their jobs.

For instance, when creating a product strategy, a product manager should know how earnings, budgeting, cash flow and profit-and-loss all play a role in the product development project.

Additionally, product managers may need to communicate with customers on current and projected revenues as well as make a case for a product development budget.

4. Research skills

These professionals regularly perform extensive market research to determine what type of products their consumers need as well as where the competition stands in relation to your organization.

Good research skills and data analysis can keep product managers in the know about marketing opportunities and threats and give them a solid foundation for creating a successful product.

5. Analytical skills

Analytical skills and research skills go hand-in-hand for product managers. After completing marketing research, product managers must then analyze and use this data to make educated product decisions.

Good product managers know how to use the data they have found to address issues and develop solutions that will ultimately lead to a successful product.

6. Interpersonal skills

In addition to strong communication skills, product managers must also have excellent interpersonal skills to effectively impact and lead the people they work with.

From customers to stakeholders to team members, product managers are regularly striving to get others on board with their product vision.

Good interpersonal skills for product managers to have include presentation, emotional intelligence, active listening, collaboration and negotiating skills.

What does a product manager do?

While there is no such thing as a typical day-to-day in product management, the role of Product Manager will usually include the following:

Strategic Work

Product Managers oversee the strategic aspects of a product from development through to deployment. They collaborate with business leaders across various departments, including sales, marketing, operations, and development, playing a crucial role in shaping the product’s success.

Tactical / Execution Work

Product Managers facilitate the product life cycle from beginning to release and they evaluate the results to measure success.

Meetings

Product Managers delegate work, give quick outlines on how on track the team is, present the final product, share key insights, and more through meetings. This just goes to show how significant communication is as a Product Manager.

Management

A Product Manager keeps the whole team on track. They must make sure that the engineers, designers, and the sales & marketers are all working in unison with each other.

Communicating with Seniors

Product Managers regularly give progress updates to their superiors. A good Product Manager is able to take a roadblock and turn it into a insight or an opportunity.

Talking to Customers

A good Product Manager knows the market and its customers and will always have the users in mind. A good PM will always look for feedback from users to know how hot or not the new product or feature is.

Working with Consultants & Vendors

When working with a new dealer or a consultant, Product Managers must be in the loop on what the dealers want to change or what new system they are implementing.

How do you become a manager?

Becoming a Product Manager doesn’t have one set path. In North America, Product Managers have all sorts of backgrounds like communications, marketing, and engineering, among others.

Make an effort to know your team and what bothers them. Have one-on-one meetings with each team member in the first few weeks. Don’t miss these meetings! They’ll help you get to know how your team members are, how they talk, and what helps them work best.

Understand The Market, The Customers, And The Product

One of the most crucial first steps for a new product manager is to comprehend the market. The best way to do so is to get as near to the customer as you can. Figure out how your company interacts with customers (listening labs, customer visits, formal/informal focus groups, customer support) and set a schedule right away to get involved.

Ask a lot of questions

Even if your questions might seem “stupid,” don’t be hesitate to ask questions, and ask a lot of them! New product managers have some freedom with naive questions, so get as many out there as you can before you’re expected to know these things.

Review Documentation & Gather Data

Read all the existing documentation accessible, whatever you can discover from your team or past iterations of projects. Keep your eye out for any of these, and once you have them in your hands, spend as much time as possible formulating a comprehensive understanding of all that information

Recognize the Bigger Picture

Running around trying to figure out everything at once can be overwhelming. But remember to always keep the big picture in mind – what’s the goal? Talking this over with your manager and setting clear expectations right from the start is a good idea.

A product manager understands what customers need and what the business wants to achieve, and turns those into new, innovative products.

They plan and manage every step needed to develop new products, from the initial idea to the final launch.

Their daily tasks include creating and managing product plans, defining product features, overseeing the development of prototypes and usability testing, deciding on feature importance, writing about product improvements, and monitoring product performance.

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