Published on March 15, 2014
DIFFERENT SKILLS = DIFFERENT STRENGTHS AS A PM Jackie Bavaro - @jackiebo
PRODUCT MANAGEMENT IS ALL ABOUT FILLING IN THE EMPTY SPACE ANY EXPERIENCESYOU’VE HAD CAN MAKEYOU A BETTER PM
• TheVenn diagram of PM Skills • Examples of how different roles have built up those skills • How to build the missing skills • How to find a company and role that’s good for you • How to use your unique skills to succeed as a PM Overview
Design a great product Ship It Strategy & Vision Leadership Customer Focus Product Design Analysis & Synthesis Action Oriented Prioritization Project Management Technical Skills Communication
Strategy & Vision Leadership Customer Focus Product Design Analysis & Synthesis Action Oriented Prioritization Project Management Technical Skills Communication ENGINEER
Strategy & Vision Leadership Product Design Analysis & Synthesis Action Oriented Technical Skills Communication MARKETING Project Management Customer Focus Prioritization
Strategy & Vision Leadership Customer Focus Product Design Analysis & Synthesis Action Oriented Prioritization Project Management Technical Skills Communication DESIGNER
Strategy & Vision Leadership Customer Focus Product Design Analysis & Synthesis Action Oriented Prioritization Project Management Technical Skills Communication PROJECT MANAGER
Strategy & Vision Leadership Customer Focus Product Design Analysis & Synthesis Action Oriented Technical Skills Communication CUSTOMER SERVICE Prioritization Project Management
Strategy & Vision Leadership Product Design Analysis & Synthesis Technical Skills Communication BUSINESS ANALYST Project Management Customer Focus Prioritization Action Oriented
HOW TO BUILD THE MISSING SKILLS
CUSTOMER FOCUS • Spend time with people • Watch them use products and look for where they run into problems • Learn what their goals are • Practice framing products in terms of customers and goals • Build up some compelling anecdotes to make the customers real for you • Check out the IDEO Human Centered Design Toolkit
PRODUCT DESIGN • Use a lot of products • Always think about how they could be improved. Double check your improvements for customer focus • Stay on top of new trends, notice what you like and don’t like, and why • Consider ways that you could apply something that works well on one product to another kind of product • Read some books on product design
ANALYSIS • Learn the fundamentals of data analysis • Check out Lean Startup and the KISSMetrics blog • Practice if you can • Sit in on data analysis meetings • Play with the data yourself
TECHNICAL SKILLS • Take some courses • Optimize for learning skills that you could actually apply at your job: CSS, Scripting, SQL • Discuss technical issues with engineers • Ask them to help you ramp up
BEING MORE ACTION ORIENTED: SCRAPPINESS • Be Brave • Make a habit of stepping up • Do, Delegate, or Decide you don’t need it • Look for times you or a teammate feels blocked - that’s a sign there’s an opportunity to be scrappy • Yes, this is hard work
PRIORITIZATION • Get comfortable with the need for prioritization • If you waited until the product was perfect it would never ship • We’re not always right about how important things are • Once the product launches you’ll learn much more from your customers • Decide what you’re optimizing for • Are you testing a hypothesis? Making a use case possible? Aiming for a quality bar?
PICKING THE RIGHT ROLE FORYOU
• Consider making the transition at your current company • Consider going after a TPM or EPM job • Look for a role where your skills will be valued • “How do you split the work with designers and marketing?” • “What do you look for in a PM?” • Look for a company where you’ll be able to learn a lot • You might want to pick a company with lots of PMs so you can learn from them
USEYOUR UNIQUE SKILLSTO SUCCEED
• Use your skills to identify areas where you can be helpful • eg. put together a marketing plan, do some data analysis • Especially great if you can use your skill to be helpful early on • Pick up experience and ask for advice in the areas you don’t know. • Ask how to learn, don’t just pass questions along • Share your skills • Build up your credibility by teaching other people what you know
...oh, and maybe buy our book THE END Also: pmblog.quora.com
PHOTO CREDITS • http://flic.kr/p/aEHMU • http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Soyuz_TMA- 09M_rocket_in_the_assembling_facility_1.jpg • http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Decisions_Decisions_(Horton,_Oxw ich_Point_or_Castle)_-_geograph.org.uk_-_1511202.jpg • http://flic.kr/p/99XzqQ
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