Best resources for new PMs?

In order to better understand the foundations of becoming a Product Manager, I’m looking for recommendations for online training programs, tools, and courses.

My background includes 2 years of sales and account management experience in tech start-ups, followed by 4 years of developing and expanding my own product.

The issue is that despite getting interviews for PM and Senior PM positions, I keep failing the last several steps. I believe this is the case because, throughout the past four years, I haven’t established the organised approach that I would have if I had been working in a team.

Terminology, group dynamics, project management methodologies, structured approaches to data analysis, feature prioritization techniques, etc. are some of the things I don’t know. Every action I’ve taken has been based more on instinct than on the application of a plan.

I essentially have “real world experience” with product launches, but not much else. So I can’t “talk the talk” in interviews, if you get what I mean?

Can you suggest the best sources for me to review this?

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Hello, congrats on getting interviews.

I’d suggest the following four books:

  1. User Story Mapping: Discover the Whole Story, Build the Right Product, Book by Jeff Patton
  2. Continuous Discovery Habits by Teresa Torres
  3. Inspired by Marty Cagan and
  4. Sprint by Jake Knapp

All four will equip you with the knowledge and skills a product manager needs to succeed in a business.

And yes, I can confirm that if you ever told a product manager that you make decisions based on instinct or gut feelings at medium-to-large organizations, they won’t ever appreciate it. This is, essentially saying, that you believe what you think is right but aren’t going to support your theory because you are confident in it; this is not the mindset a product manager should have (imo and based on experienced hiring).

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I really appreciate the recommendations @RisaButler; that was just what I needed. I haven’t read any of the others, only Inspired by Marty Cagan.

There is still a plenty to discover! Would you suggest obtaining any certifications, or is just understanding the concepts in these books is enough?

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Inspired is basics, the rest flesh it out with practical examples!

My fav is user story mapping, I give it to all new product managers and generally realize it’s value a few years later

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Fair enough, I’ll give the books a read and see where that gets me in interviews …

If that doesn’t work then I’ll try going for another role that may eventually allow me to transition into Product.

Thanks again for your insight! Loving this community already.

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The other core thing you probably need to know about is working in agile within a team; inspired talks about this but isn’t overly practical (skims the details).

Good luck!

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Hi bro, I am also preparing for switching to product. I have learnt theory part. Now looking for a mock partner with similar goal to exchange feedback. If you are seriously looking for entering product, then we can teach and guide each other whatever we have learnt. Because in product as interviews are interactive, people with product sense can only take it.

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Certifications can be an organized way to introduce oneself to and educate yourself about various NPD/PM principles, albeit they aren’t always beneficial because you receive letters after your name like for project management. You get what you put into them, like with other things. That strategy might be effective for you if you have the ability to go read a bunch of different things and synthesize them. Go for it if you feel more at ease receiving a curriculum that has already been planned out for you. Alternately, you might like to merely begin with a course to provide you a foundation before moving on. The skills needed for product management differ depending on the industry you work in.

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Congratulations on getting the interviews, to get you upto speed I will recommend these

  • Hooked by Nir Eyal;
  • Cole Mercer videos;
  • Resources like Product5x;
  • Case Studies like PM School and Newsletters just to get up to date.
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I really like Diego Granados’s videos and LinkedIn activity. He recently created a course too that I’ve signed up for because I know I need to work on interviewing. Not sure if this is what you’re looking for

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Diego is that guy! With his YT videos alone I’ve been able to cruise through interviews killing the behavioral and strategic questions. I’m in the final interview stage with what I’d consider my dream product to own :crossed_fingers:

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There are a ton of training courses on LinkedIn Learning (which are free with some public library memberships) and Udemy. I would recommend you start with this one, it is a great basics rundown:

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A wonderful resource for learning about the duties and obligations of a “standard” PM is Product Management in Practice. Standard PM tasks obviously vary greatly across companies, hence the quotation marks, however I believe it would be helpful for interview preparation.

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There’s a book “product management in practice” by Matt Lemay, that has more practical on the job learnings.

There’s a PM discord for beginners. Has like 2k members now

Here is a good list of books / articles by PM topics

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After five years as a product manager, I am currently a product leader in an MNC. I underwent the transition around ten years ago, and so far it has been a thrilling adventure.

I was able to make the shift thanks in part to the following things:

  1. Recognize your areas of strength and apply for PM positions in those areas (This way you will have the upper hand and showcase what value you can bring in)

  2. Attend a PM Bootcamp to learn important topics that will help you ace your PM interview, like Product School or Mentor Me Good. Take any product school course if all you want to learn is PM skills. Opt for a Bootcamp at Mentor Me Good if you wish to get an offer.

  3. In order to find opportunities to work as a PM, collaborate with your existing workplace. After six months of conversation, you should think about moving out and going on the PM job interview if you don’t see many opportunities. Life is too short to not live your passion.

  4. Update your resume and STAR tales while reading the books. I used the book Lean Product Playbook by Dan Olsen, which is available on Amazon.com: How to Innovate with Minimum Viable Products and Rapid Customer Feedback." YouTube videos and books. Take a look at “Mentor Me Good”.

As soon as you get the job and become proficient, assist others. Once you have mastered the abilities, teach others about product management. The best approach to advance is in this way. Note: Mentor Me Good is one of the places where I offer PM coaching.

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Does anyone knows some courses about data analysis, AWS or AI but not in a technical way? I’m not a developer, thanks!

Not a course but this newsletter is pretty good for learning technical concepts in an easy-to-understand way: