4 Unexpected People Skills Every Product Manager Needs

product managers in a startup office environment drinking coffee

It’s all about the technology, right? Nope. I learned that fast in my first product management role. Product managers need a wide array of skills to be successful. And a lot of those skills involve people. When you factor in that many product managers work within a “responsibility without formal authority” context, having interpersonal skills is essential.

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7 Tips to Hire the Perfect Product Manager

hiring manager interviewing candidate

Product managers are a relatively new position at companies big and small. In order to summarize the very high expectations that come with the role, job descriptions often describe someone with “big vision and the ability to make it a reality.” So how do you determine if someone can see big and work small at the same time?

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How Product Managers Get Customer Feedback in 24 Hours or Less

Product manager working at a desk

Black accents or aluminum? That was the last industrial design decision we had to make when nearing the launch of our Movband 3 fitness activity tracker. Our design team was split for months, but now we needed to make the call quickly.

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5 Steps to Jumpstart Your Product Management Career

swing carnival ride

Are you a new product manager — or an experienced one who is interested in re-invigorating your career? If so, you’re likely looking for strategies, tips, and insights for how to make sure you are on track and moving forward.
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Don't Let Your Product Strategy Happen to You

Product development is an emotional process. And, in my experience, it’s very easy to get lost in this process. In my work as an entrepreneur, angel investor, and co-founder of several ventures, I have seen (and fallen victim to) the trap that a product can control you. The product has a way of taking over to such an extent that it becomes the boss of your life.
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6 Things Product Managers Should Do Before Building a Roadmap

The product roadmap is one of the most essential documents your company creates. It shows what your product aims to achieve, how it will fulfill important goals, and how your product will impact the larger organization.
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Why I Failed with the Apple III and Steve Jobs Succeeded with the Macintosh

You hear a lot about Steve Jobs from second-hand accounts. But I knew Steve better than most — because he was my colleague.
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6 Lessons I Learned as the New Head of Marketing at a Startup

I joined Enplug in the fall of 2014. We sell digital signage software, and my job was to send personalized emails and Facebook messages to businesses that might want to purchase our technology. My first role was simple. But it would not stay that way for long.
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Why Every Product Manager Needs a Product Content Strategy

The idea that words are critical to business is so obvious that it’s silly. This blog post is not only made up of words — it is all about words. It’s about how words are used within products today.
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4 Lessons I Learned Designing NASA's 1st iPhone App

In 2009, I was put in charge of designing the NASA App — NASA’s first app ever designed for the iPhone. Their vision was to “deliver fresh NASA content on a daily basis to people’s pockets.”
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6 Ways Product Managers Avoid Product Disasters

Is it really that bad? “80 to 90 percent of products fail.” You might hear this statistic quoted a lot, but it is not clear exactly where it comes from and is likely urban legend.
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3 Essential Principles of Agile Product Planning

Agile product management has never been more popular — or more misunderstood, it seems. A common opinion I hear often is that planning plays a very small role within an Agile methodology.
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The Evolution of Product Management Tools

Ever wondered why product managers have been forced to fight battles with bows and arrows for so long? Think about it. Software engineers have been the recipient of so many new types of tools in the last 10 years — new languages, platforms, and applications. This partly explains how it’s possible for engineers around the world to create 60,000 new apps each month!
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How Product Managers Should Think About User Analytics

The practice of making data-based decisions in software is nothing new. Understanding what your users are doing can inform decisions at all levels of your organization.
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How the Best Product Managers Discover $1B Ideas

Big ideas are beautiful when you discover them. The process of finding new ideas and significant new product enhancement concepts is invigorating for product managers. But noise from paying customers clamoring for what they want can distract PMs from building what matters most.
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