Why do people become product managers ?
When asked this question, people generally give very generic answers like:
I look for the user’s needs and business opportunities.
I am a constant learner and a problem solver.
I have an eye for product design.
I want to understand “What” and “Why” more than “How”.
I think about features and functions and their ROI.
I prioritize ruthlessly and know when to trade off good ideas.
I am good at working with uncertainty.
I can bring people together for a common purpose.
I am a technologist.
But actually, that is not what the interviewer is looking for. You have to be more specific with answers like:
“I’m really passionate about working " “cross-functionally””, specially on understanding customer needs and translating that into Product Requirements for the team.""
““I really excel at communication with stakeholders. I have experience interacting with customers and creating proposals for the leadership team, including Engineering.””
““I use data to make decisions and see myself doing this as a PM to improve our products””"
Some important skills every product manager needs to succeed:
Understand the user life cycle
The most exciting part of product management role is the control and ability to make a difference to a customer’s pain point. Seeing the feature I build; getting to life and used by customers is the most satisfying and thrilling part of the product management.
A product manager’s job is all about solving problems for people. If your life has led you to creative thinking, problem-solving, and curiosity, it’s quite possible product management is the perfect career choice and you’d be a perfect fit for a role where you can practice, learn and grow a ton.
The easy answer to this question, would be a list of skills. A long list that would include: subject matter expertise, outstanding communication skills, market knowledge, leadership ability, innovativeness, strong researching skills, the ability to think strategically, etc.
A product manager is the person who identifies the customer need and the larger business objectives that a product or feature will fulfill, articulates what success looks like for a product, and rallies a team to turn that vision into a reality.