Job Description

I’m hiring the first PM for my startup and looking for templates or anywhere that can help me write up the job description.

Where do I look? :slight_smile:

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Look up LinkedIn Jobs, find one you like.
Also, I’m looking :smiley:

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I would search for open product manager roles on LinkedIn and Indeed and then borrow bullet points and general themes from there. As someone who built a successful startup and hired/managed a team of PM’s, here are a couple of important qualities/qualifications I would consider:

  • You’ll want your first PM to be a true self-starter. Someone that understands the direction of where the company is going, and can start working to better understand the customer without a lot of hand-holding
  • Make sure the PM is able to broadly understand software engineering and how to communicate with software devs.
  • Experience in platforms like JIRA or trello is optional, but a really nice to have

And the biggest requirement is to hire someone that isn’t an asshole. This sounds obvious, but no one likes working with one but more importantly, your users don’t want to talk to one.

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@NathanEndicott, Thanks so much!

I’ve gone over so many articles, wanted ads, posts on this excellent sub, etc.

I was hoping to find a sheet or template that is actually used in a “real” company - I feel like what I’ve gathered is too abstract and open to interpretation…

So far with positions like marketing, sales and developers, the job is clear - a developer codes, a salesperson makes calls etc (I’m oversimplifying to make a point of course;)).

This is the first role in the company where I feel like it’s not 100% clear to me what the day-to-day should look like, or even where the lines should be drawn between my job/responsibilities as the founder and the new PM (as I’ve built the product they will be managing).

Does that make sense? It’s been a while since I’ve felt a lack of confidence about something lol (time to grow up as a company I guess)

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As someone that was in a similar role to the one you’re describing, I would take a standard template (the skills part, what industry, product, how much YOE you want, etc.)

Then fill up the summary part with language like “0-1”, “shifting responsibilities day to day”, “early stage startup experience”, “works closely with CEO”, etc.

Should help you get the right person

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@NaomiNwosu, Thanks. Any good templates to start with?

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@AhmadBashir, I would honestly just copy paste a similar role from a top company in whatever industry you’re in. Like if you’re marketplace, and you want a data PM, check uber or whatever for a similar role then swap out the summary, reword, and add some bullet points.

I think you’re overthinking this a little bit lol…

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It may also be beneficial to understand what Product Managers actually do all day and how it differs from a software engineer or other roles within an org.

The PM role is one of the broadest and general roles and frankly the role looks a little different at every company. This person’s typical day should consist of (but not limited to…) talking to customers/end-users and getting feedback, evaluating priorities of features, developing and iterating on a roadmap, writing stories, talking with engineers, looking at competitors, reviewing data from current features already deployed, managing stakeholder expectations/requests, and the list goes on.

It’s honestly an incredibly challenging role. It’s probably why you are having such a difficult time finding a template. Because every business has such different requirements for what a PM should do based on what they are building, the people involved, and the stage of the company.

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@RisaButler, That actually makes me feel a lot better, because I was worried, I was just “not getting it”.

I guess another way to put it a PM is sort of like a CEO of a specific product? i.e., it’s more about “whatever needs to be done” than a specific set of tasks and defines procedure (especially in a young company) - am I getting this right?

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Not trying to be obtuse, but have you tried looking at the JDs on LinkedIn or startups in your realm? No one outside your company can help you write up your JD because only you know what you need. Your question is so vague and open ended, it’s impossible to provide any useful help. Do you have a skeleton one that you’ve written up at least?

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@RichardsonEva, Yeah I did, I felt like they are very general and assumed when you actually get a job in PM you’d get a much more detailed sheet.

I feel like the things companies post publicity are relatively vague, with descriptions that are very open to interpretation.

It might just be my thing, but I’ve had problems in the past with job descriptions that weren’t “airtight” and it was a mess.

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Check out the Job Description for PM roles at Lever. I remember liking those because they lay out the first 30,60,90 days of what the new hire can expect.

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PM who’s worked primarily in early stage startups - It’s okay to use another companies JD as a reference but don’t copy it.

You should have a solid understanding of what you need a PM for. Be very clear in the JD on what problem you need to solve with this role and what their responsibilities will be.

Provide as much detail as possible. Ambiguity will lead to misalignment on expectations. Format doesn’t matter as long as you’ve organized the info in a clear way.

  • who we are
  • what we do
  • problem we need to solve
  • expectations for this role
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@DamianMarshall, Yuuup the ambiguity is exactly what I’m worried about.

I’m having trouble defining the job accurately enough that there’s not room for interpretation, because I’ve had problems with that in the past in other positions in the company.

I guess what I’m actually looking for are examples on how bigger organizations define role as, responsibilities, etc.

That’s why looking at stuff on google and LinkedIn isn’t helpful, because they are kind of vague (which makes sense before a person is actually hired and gets a more accurate description - I presume?)

Like someone said, maybe I’m overthinking, but this is an area where I’m insecure.

Here are some good examples/templates of PM JD:

Product Manager Job Description | Product Focus

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Excellent! Thank you so much.

Thank you all for taking time to post your views.

Appreciate it!