What Do Product Managers Do?
“Product Management is evolving and changing. Product Managers happen to be at the focal point of some of the most profound change that is happening culturally in our world.” - Janice Fraser
Product managers drive (not own) the vision, strategy, design, and execution of their product. This happens through a very collaborative process spanning across many different area’s of an organization.
There are a thousands of things organizations could be going after. As Product Managers we develop and communicate a vision that conveys what we’re doing... why we’re doing it... the high level goals... and why the goals are important
Unlike the vision, we are iterating and redefining our strategy until we find a Product/Market fit. We develop product strategies to help describe who the product is for and why people would want to buy/use it,what the product is and why it stands out,what the business goals are and why it is worthwhile for your company to invest in it.
The lines between the UX/design and product teams are blurry, often times dependent on team size and configuration. We possess strong research and empathy skills allowing us to understand our customer’s pain points, desires and needs. Those customer goals translate into Product features. You don’t need to be a great visual designer yourself, but you do need to be able to recognize great design.
Execution is about understanding what needs to be done and how to get it done given the current set of constraints. It’s about figuring out what is important, what’s not, and then making sure it all happens.
An effective product manager must be able to see all parts of the equation while prioritizing everything that needs to be done. It may be a meeting with marketing to align on outgoing messaging. It may be working with sales to finalize pricing changes. It may be design sessions with the development and UX team on the next big feature release. The key being that not everything that is important is most important right now.