How to Land the Best Job as a Product Manager?

Written by Guest Author: Saurabh Tyagi

Many people want the title Product manager. It sounds and reads suave and impressive. However, the ambiguity surrounding this particular role and its responsibilities and no set defined academic requirements leads people to self-proclaim themselves as a product manager a tad too early in their career. Similarly, many recruiters also do not have complete understanding of the skills of a product manager and as a result companies tend to make hiring decisions based upon domain experience against quantifiable product management skills. Here are some tips to land the best product manager job.

Take product management training for best knowledge

If you want the best product management job, you should have the best knowledge as well. Real product managers drive the product vision, work with designers and engineers and everyone in between, analyze the performance of the features and make decisions. As the tasks involved are extensive it become imperative for the aspiring candidate to have either extensive experience or training in the commonly agreed upon industry standards for the practice of product management. When you get trained, it helps you gain an inside view of the prevalent practices, enhance the existing knowledge and network with similarly skilled professionals.

Read product management books

As a product manager, you will have to manage a range of diverse activities, departments, work on a number of tools and deal with a highly diverse set of professionals. Reading product management books will enable you to speak the language of those involved. Interviewer might even ask you about some extra resources that you follow in order to stay ahead of the curve and if you come out with a name or two of some of the famous product management books it will definitely add to your appeal as a prospective candidate.

Crack the Interview

With the responsibilities that a product manager handles, it’s no surprise that candidates are overwhelmed when preparing for interviews.  Sadly, there is no way you can bypass this critical step. The typical interviewer might test your design experience or analytical capabilities, your leadership skills or business acumen or just focus on the technical portion. You can never be too sure, thus, it is best to be prepared for everything.  Customer empathy is another important quality that CEOs seek in their product managers.  As Steven Sinofsky, the former President of Microsoft’s Windows division explains, “as a PM you are the voice of the customer so you have to really understand their point of view and context.”  Some of his favorite questions include

  • What was the last product you bought and why?

  • Describe your buying process and what influenced your buying decision.

Develop Connections and leverage them

Networking has always been one of the best ways to secure a job that you wouldn’t have been able to in normal circumstances. In this age of internet, networking has also assumed different notions, and has turned into more of a social networking phenomenon. LinkedIn has become the de-facto for reaching out and meeting new professionals of an industry.  

Joining the existing product management groups on this social network, and participating in the discussion or starting your own discussion is a good practice to make an impact.  For a real world perspective you can join a local product management association and participate in the events. You can show this participation in your resume and also cash in on the opportunities to establish professional connections. Such groups and associations are sometimes the first places that recruiters and companies search for candidates for product management jobs.

Highlight your achievements

Crafting the right resume is a critical part of any job search process. Make sure that you highlight the right sections in your resume as recruiters only scan a CV for six seconds according to a study. Achievements are one section that fits the criteria. Your new job application should highlight all that you have achieved in previous organizations and jobs, and how these achievements align with the new product manager job that you are applying to.

There are rarely any professionals who start their career as product manager. The majority of them start their career in different functions and after gaining necessary skills and experience, and making the right moves ultimately break into the PM roles.

About Saurabh Tyagi
Saurabh Tyagi is a career author with over 4 years of proven experience and expertise in writing article for various leading blogs and online publishing platforms. He is a technically sound person, equipped with the knowledge on various upcoming web technologies, including social media, product design, web design and development.  You can find him here
Saurabh Tyagi.

The Product Person Spring Inclusion Party!

theproductgroup_logo_200909_thumb752
SummitService-Logo2013-Final-LRG-WEB
balsamiq_logo2_thumb263333
sunshine_suites_logo
RymaLogoHighRes257_thumb5222

Thank you to everyone who made it to The Product Person Spring Inclusion Party!

Over the course of the night, a few of our highlights were… YOU!  Thank you to everyone who made it!

IMG_20140417_201000

TBPP2014_alt-abrv-tpgroupDo you know someone who is great at product?  They might just be the best!  Submit your nomination for The Best Product Person of 2014!

Visit http://TheBestProductPerson.com today!
Nominate this year’s best and everyone wins!

The Product Group meet-ups are an opportunity for Product People (managers, strategists, marketers, etc.) to come together to meet, interact, and network in a roundtable setting. It’s awesome to meet fellow Product People in a laid-back, conversational gathering.

If you are a Product Person and are interested in having your product featured or participating as a featured guest expert at an upcoming meetup of The Product Group, contact me (or email at jhorn (a-t.) tpgblog DoT com).

I am looking forward to seeing everyone at our next meetup …

Thursday, May 1st @ 7PM
RSVP Now!
 

Stay tuned for more announcements about May’s Featured Product, Reliant.

tpj-logo-w_lkwAnd, don’t forget to check out our new job board exclusively dedicated to Product jobs!

Visit  http://TheProductJobs.com and happy hunting!

TPM-Short3-Logo4If you are interested in being a Product Mentor or seeking Product Management Mentorship…

Visit http://TheProductMentor.com and
Sign-up today!

Enjoy!

Jeremy Horn
The Product Guy

P.S. Interested in becoming a sponsor or host of The Product Group? contact me.

The Product Jobs [Update]

tpj-logo-w_lkw_thumb1_thumb_thumb_thSince launching The Product Jobs, several months ago, to freely connect product job seekers and those looking to hire great product people there have been over 800 product job postings!

Today, I am very pleased to be announcing some new features…

  • Social sharing of cool and interesting jobs
    • If you see a job that someone in your social sphere may find interesting, or wish to clue in your friend on a great new opportunity for their career, you can now easily share the posting with him / her via Facebook, Twitter, and Google Plus
  • Easier Applicant Management
    • For job posters, all applicants, along with their application dates, resume, and cover letter information, are now called out in the “My Job Posts” section and selectable within the new applicant section at the bottom of the corresponding job post.

It can be hard to find a product job, harder to find the right product person. I get it. This has been my experience, as well as that of scores of others.

Visit http://TheProductJobs.com today.

The Product Jobs is FREE for all! Just create an account to apply to, or post, a new PRODUCT position.

IMG_2282I believe in a growing and vibrant product person community. That is why I created The Product Jobs as well as founded The Product Group, the largest product management meetup in the world, providing product people of all types a laid-back conversational place to go to network, learn, and talk.

I hope you enjoy these new features for TheProductJobs.com and benefit from it as much as I enjoyed building it.  Please help me in spreading the word of this resource for the Product community, enjoy, and happy hunting!

Thanks.

Jeremy Horn
The Product Guy

The Product Person Holiday Party and More!

theproductgroup_logo_200909_thumb752
SummitService-Logo2013-Final-LRG-WEB
balsamiq_logo2_thumb263333
sunshine_suites_logo
RymaLogoHighRes257_thumb5222

Thank you to everyone who made it to The Product Person Holiday Party 2013!

Over the course of the night, a few of our highlights were… YOU!  Thank you to everyone who made it!

UIMG_20131114_193211

TBPP2013_alt-abrv-114Submit your nomination for The Best Product Person of 2013!

Visit http://TheBestProductPerson.com today!
Nominate this year’s best and everyone wins!

The Product Group meet-ups are an opportunity for Product People (managers, strategists, marketers, etc.) to come together to meet, interact, and network in a roundtable setting. It’s awesome to meet fellow Product People in a laid-back, conversational gathering.

If you are a Product Person and are interested in having your product featured or participating as a featured guest expert at an upcoming meetup of The Product Group, contact me (or email at jhorn (a-t.) tpgblog DoT com).

I am looking forward to seeing everyone at our next meetup …

Thursday, December 5th @ 7PM
RSVP Now!
 

Stay tuned for more announcements about December’s Featured Product, Moven.

tpj-logo-w_lkwAnd, don’t forget to check out our new job board exclusively dedicated to Product jobs!

Visit  http://TheProductJobs.com and happy hunting!

TPM-Short3-Logo4If you are interested in being a Product Mentor or seeking Product Management Mentorship…

Visit http://TheProductMentor.com and
Sign-up today!

Enjoy!

Jeremy Horn
The Product Guy

P.S. Interested in becoming a sponsor or host of The Product Group? contact me.

The Product Jobs

tpj-logo-w_lkwI believe in a growing and vibrant product person community. That is, in part, why I founded The Product Group, the largest product management meetup in the world, providing product people of all types a laid-back conversational place to go to network, learn, and talk. It is out of this endeavor a new product idea was sparked.

IMG_2164Members of The Product Group are constantly asking me for advice and assistance in getting into Product Management or finding their next Product job, or for recommendations for a great product person. It can be hard to find a product job, harder to find the right product person. I get it. This has been my experience, as well as that of scores of others.

Today, I am very proud to announce the official launch of The Product Jobs for product job seekers and those looking to hire great product people.

Visit http://TheProductJobs.com today.

The Product Jobs is FREE for all! Just create an account to apply to, or post, a new PRODUCT position.

Please help me in spreading the word of this new resource for the Product community, enjoy, and happy hunting.

Thanks.

Jeremy Horn
The Product Guy

From Spotting the Music to Exercising your Metamemory

   Every week I read thousands of blog posts. For your weekend enjoyment, here are some of those highlights. What are you reading this weekend?

articleimage_25

On Design & Product Experience…

http://uxmag.com/articles/metamemory-and-the-user-experience
Exercise your metamemory!

Occupy protester

On Modular Innovation…

http://www.readwriteweb.com/cloud/2011/10/how-i-learned-to-stop-whining.php
Participate in the culture of Modular Innovation.

Have a great weekend!

Jeremy Horn
The Product Guy

From the Sales Cycle to Innovation Nibbles

Every week I read thousands of blog posts. For your weekend enjoyment, here are some of those highlights. What are you reading this weekend?

02_failure

On Design & Product Experience…

http://www.graphicdesignblog.org/creative-404-error-page-designs/
Welcome the beauty of failure.

Have a great weekend!

Jeremy Horn
The Product Guy

From Multiples to Windows 8

Every week I read thousands of blog posts. For your weekend enjoyment, here are some of those highlights. What are you reading this weekend?

01_valuation

On Starting Up…

http://www.avc.com/a_vc/2011/09/determining-valuation-multiples.html
Price and revenue to multiply it out.

02_valuation

On Design & Product Experience…

http://www.usabilitypost.com/2011/09/14/aero-vs-metro/
Can Windows 8 successfully transition its user base to this new UX?

03_jig

On Modular Innovation…

http://www.readwriteweb.com/archives/ from_the_creator_of_delicious_jig.php
Another Modular Innovation, enhancing the relationships and sharing between people and products online.

Have a great weekend!

Jeremy Horn
The Product Guy

From Sitelinks of Change to the 1

   Every week I read thousands of blog posts. For your weekend enjoyment, here are some of those highlights. What are you reading this weekend?

02_sitelinks

On Design & Product Experience…

http://www.readwriteweb.com/archives/google-improves-visibility-and-rankings-for-siteli.php
Witness the sitelinks of change.

03_soulseekr

On Modular Innovation…

http://techcocktail.com/online-dating-site-soulseekr-puts-your-social-data-to-good-use-2011-08
Find that special someone through the power of the relationships of Modular Innovation.

Have a great weekend!

Jeremy Horn
The Product Guy

From More Debt to Savory Gojee

Every week I read thousands of blog posts. For your weekend enjoyment, here are some of those highlights. What are you reading this weekend?

01_debt

On Starting Up…

http://www.avc.com/a_vc/2011/07/financings-options-venture-debt.html
Upgrade your finances at just the right time with the right bit of debt.

02_gojee

On Design & Product Experience…

http://www.fuelyourcreativity.com/meet-gojee-have-your-cake-and-eat-it-too/
Savor the delectable experience of Gojee

03_webapp

On Modular Innovation…

http://highscalability.com/blog/2011/7/26/web-20-killed-the-middleware-star.html
Share the messaging and solve it with modular innovation.

Have a great weekend!

Jeremy Horn
The Product Guy