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Helping people kick start their product management career at gettingstartedinproduct.com * Product person at Watchfinder

The realities of finding the opportunity you’ve been looking for

Dilbert, the comic strip all about business life by Scott Adams, was first published in 1989, meaning Dilbert has been suffering at the hands of his corporate bosses for over 30 years.

The genius of Adams’ work is the distillation of corporate life into (mostly) three small images, and he’s approached all aspects of organisational operations, include product.

Yes, Adams has had his controversies, but the realities of getting a new job still ring true.

If you’re job description really does say that you “try to do something and then I get interrupted a jillion times” then maybe product management…


Generating ideas to solve a problem

As product people, we’re expecting to come up with ideas to solve problems all of the time.

  • How do we increase the success of our sign up process?
  • How do we make sure that our customer retention rate doesn’t drop below X%?
  • How do we fix problem Y that our users are having?

Often, we stand in front of a whiteboard and start drawing up things to see where our mind takes us, and hopefully we can join together some of our thoughts into a coherent idea that can be investigated further.

If we structure our thoughts a bit more…


Stories of getting started in product management

As part of our Getting Started in Product series, we look at some people who have already made the transition into a product role and ask them all about how they got started.

What’s your current role?

I’m a the Chief Product Officer for the biggest marketplace and media operator in the Nordics.

What did you do before you got into Product Management?

I worked as Product Manager and Product Designer for 5–6 years without knowing it.

I founded an e-sports web site in high school with some school friends in 2003 and we had to figure out what thing to build next. We grew to become one of the largest websites in Sweden…


What skills do you need to be a successful product manager?

When it comes to being a product manager, there are a number of core ‘soft’ skills that you need to have, or develop. These include:

  • Critical thinking
  • Strategic thinking
  • Empathy
  • Curiosity
  • Facilitation
  • Communication
  • Leadership
  • Coaching

In this story, we’re going to take a look at coaching.

What are coaching skills?

Coaching is a process that aims to improve performance and focuses on current performance, rather than on historical or future performance. …


Is it worth the time and financial investment?

I’ve seen many people suggest that an MBA is a key attribute for any serious product person to hold, and you can read stories of how an MBA will set you up to lead a product to success.

However, MBAs are expensive and really time consuming, which means you really need to commit to it if that’s something you want to pursue.

The question here though is whether you NEED to have an MBA to be a successful product manager?

What is an MBA?

The Master of Business Administration (MBA) is a prestigious postgraduate qualification that provides an overview of key business practices and…


Stories of getting started in product management

As part of our Getting Started in Product series, we look at some people who have already made the transition into a product role and ask them all about how they got started.

What’s your current role?

I’m a Product Manager at a SaaS Talent Management and ERP provider.

What did you do before you got into Product Management?

I was an Evolutionary Biology PhD candidate but dropped out to take up an offer for a PM role.

How did you get your first product role?

During my PhD, we were having issues with documenting things in the lab. I looked for a solution and found a start up called Labstep who I felt understood the problems I was facing. I started…


What skills do you need to be a successful product manager?

When it comes to being a product manager, there are a number of core ‘soft’ skills that you need to have, or develop. These include:

  • Critical thinking
  • Strategic thinking
  • Empathy
  • Curiosity
  • Facilitation
  • Communication
  • Leadership
  • Coaching

In this story, we’re going to take a look at leadership.

What are leadership skills?

The question of what makes a good leader has been discussed many times, and it is clear that the ability to lead a group relies on a variety of skills. However, different leaders have very different leadership styles and in reality there is no one right way to lead. …


What skills do you need to be a successful product manager?

When it comes to being a product manager, there are a number of core ‘soft’ skills that you need to have, or develop. These include:

  • Critical thinking
  • Strategic thinking
  • Empathy
  • Curiosity
  • Facilitation
  • Communication
  • Leadership
  • Coaching

In this story, we’re going to take a look at communication.

What are Communication Skills?

You use communication skills whenever you are giving and receiving different kinds of information, which can be written, spoken, typed or even in the form of body language. You might need to communicate ideas, feelings or what’s going on around you and they involve listening, speaking, observing and empathizing.

Demonstrating strong communication skills is…


What skills do you need to be a successful product manager?

When it comes to being a product manager, there are a number of core ‘soft’ skills that you need to have, or develop. These include:

  • Critical thinking
  • Strategic thinking
  • Empathy
  • Curiosity
  • Facilitation
  • Communication
  • Leadership
  • Coaching

In this story, we’re going to take a look at facilitation.

What are Facilitation Skills?

Photo by fauxels from Pexels

Facilitation is “the act of helping other people to deal with a process or reach an agreement or solution without getting directly involved in the process, discussion, etc. yourself”, which effectively means enabling others to take action themselves, without you having to be always directing them.

Ideally, a facilitator should maintain a neutral position…


From data and OKRs, to discovery and delivery

There is so much information available for product managers these days, compared to when I started out twenty years ago when product management wasn’t even a thing.

The challenge is seeing through all the noise to find the ones that you need!

Photo by Nick Fewings on Unsplash

6 Books To Help Your Product Discovery

We all have ideas for ways to improve things.

They might come to us when we’re queueing at Starbucks for our coffee, or when we’re standing in the shower. We might hear some feedback from our customer and put this together with another customer’s feedback and get that spark of inspiration.

The difference between product people and non-product…

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