Like Julie Zhou said, engineers are not a resource. As we get older, we’re more resistant to change and often find that we’ve fallen out of the routine of continually mastering new skills and those “learning muscles” we flexed so often in our school-age years may feel much weaker after they’ve been given a break for some time. What we’re talking about is understanding what technologies are being used, what they’re capable of and some of the fundamentals. Regardless of how your data is stored, the best way to unlock it is by learning how to construct and run your own SQL queries. Then it’s time to determine what data you’ll need access to to evaluate the results. You need to be your product’s biggest fan—ready, willing, and able to convert others to your cause.Â. As you’re asking developers to essentially code something that has a high probability of ending up in the rubbish bin, your plan must be bulletproof. Before diving into the more nebulous skills necessary to successful product management, it goes without saying that PMs must be technical. However, shorten our project management skills list to just seven basic areas – planning and scheduling, time management, risk management, cost management, quality management, contract management, stakeholder management. Comprehending the world of code is key to your ability to communicate with engineering. More Product Manager Skills . They should ideally be excellent presenters, skillful diplomats, and good listeners. A/B testing can be conducted on almost anything, from marketing campaigns, to UX elements, to pricing models. Below we've compiled a list of the most important skills for a Technical Product Manager. Relationship management skills enable smoother operations and help with conflict resolution. Whether the role is a traditional product manager or a growth product manager, it’s clearly no easy task to fill such big shoes. What’s going on here? We can scientifically prove whether the user prefers the blue button or the red button instead of just picking one and hoping for the best. Main product manager skills list include: Ability to create and develop product strategies and plans. What problem has this product helped you solve? Join over 6,000 people who receive bi-weekly product feedback tips. If you’ve whipped up a couple options, you can see which one people prefer to better guide your plans. Some examples include knowledge of programming languages, … It’s about building a common understanding with the team and empathy for any roadblocks they may face making your vision a reality. Stripped down to its core, this role is about building and implementing the vision for product success. Raleigh, NC 27601. To give you a little flavor, here’s a short-form hypothetical job description, aggregated from real-life listings on SaaS job boards: The product manager is a pivotal member of our team who is ultimately responsible for making business decisions and creating product strategies that solve user challenges and drive revenue. 5 technical concepts product managers should know . Talk with them about their experience. By continuing to use this site, you agree to the use of cookies. These are the building blocks of the “front end,” plus you can use them to whip up some landing pages or proofs of concept if you’re so inclined. A good PM needn’t necessarily be a software expert, but should have the technical acumen necessary to prioritize projects. Finally, there’s code itself. First, sometimes you need some visual aids to convey your vision to stakeholders, and a rough prototype is a great way to make things tangible. over, let the other person run with it. The good news is you don’t need to go back to school to master these technical competencies either. This will inform the overall size, scope and length of the experiment. Successful Product Managers blend highly technical hard skills and people-oriented soft skills to reach business objectives. Sure, Google Sheets has taken some of the shine off this Microsoft Office standby, but there are a few things that still warrant product managers firing up Excel. Keep reading for more essential PM skills, including “street statistics” and how to run more effective meetings. Experimentation, analysis, and data visualization skills are important, so you may want to ex… You also might want to augment your requirements with a prototype to be sure the implementation team understands what you’re shooting for (even though any “design” coming out of product management should be purely informative and not prescriptive). Client side vs. server side. Pivot tables will do the trick in a heartbeat. Engineers are people who have their own pain points and battles. Technical Skills. Here are the most important Hard Skills you need as a Product Manager: 1. You want to get to the heart of the value they experience as well as any shortcomings.Â, Be creative and consistent about engaging your users. We’ve established that the PM role is one that involves existing within multiple departments and mentalities at once, but what does this look like on a day-to-day basis? Basically: you should know how to obtain, extract, and analyze the data you need to prove a hypothesis. User experience design. If things didn't go smoothly, brainstorm collaboratively about how to handle things better next time. customer bases and internal teams of any size. It is the document your teams refer to from concept to launch for critical information about product direction, specifications, key dates, target audience, key performance indicators (KPIs), and much more. Maintaining a reliable code base is just as important as shipping new features to customers—and high-quality PMs can help t… Macros are the other useful Excel feature a product manager might want to utilize. It’s smart advice that few people actually follow.Â. Get a single platform that gives you all the tools to listen, analyze and close the loop with We’re living in the golden age of analytics, so there are plenty to choose from. A product manager does many things. The most successful sample resumes for Technical Product Managers emphasize technical background, research skills, excellent communication abilities, teamwork, business acumen, and … You need to be able to structure and write this document so that it’s easy to follow and understand, despite the depth and breadth of the information it contains. Make an emotional connection. After all, customer loyalty is one of the key drivers of growth.Â, As the product manager, you are the voice of the customer within your organization. It’s kind of the heart of a software business. Just like you track the performance of your product after it's launched—to figure out what worked and what didn’t—you should also track how team members performed on delegated tasks. 234 Fayetteville St With them you can quickly create a dynamic filterable chart or graph. Now, the A/B concept itself isn’t particularly technical, but executing these tests does require a little more skillfulness. 2. A project manager should have various technical skills and competencies. The PM is responsible both for solving day-to-day problems and meeting short- and long-term customer and business objectives. But, the most valuable use case is for collecting feedback. The “growth product manager” is a slightly different role that includes direct accountability for commercial business outcomes, like free to paid conversion rate and upgrade/expansion revenue,. The good news is you don’t need to go back to school to master these technical competencies either. While designing this product a Product Manager must specifically set user context and understand user expectations. When customers take the time to share their experience, make sure you acknowledge them. If you work on consumer-facing products or products that require a lot of advertising or consumer marketing, for example, you’ll no doubt be asked to run A/B tests and interpret the results. It’s your job to have an intimate understanding of their needs so you can effectively advocate for a solution that meets those needs. They live and breathe this stuff all day long, so it helps if you can speak the same language. You may have heard engineers on your team refer to something happening on the client’s side or something happening on the server side. And, there’s no shortage of tools and resources available to shepherd us on this journey. Emotional intelligence and empathy help you read and manage situations more accurately and tactfully. You’re probably already looking at Google Analytics by now to track web traffic and campaign conversions (and if not, you need to get on that pronto). The skills we’ll discuss in this article won’t put you in competition with your engineers or make you smarter than your system architects. While a technical background is a mandatory prerequisite for becoming a product manager, there are some technical skills worth having in your toolbox as a PM. My experience has shown that if you can offset some of the things your team lacks, you can deliver stellar features to your users. We ranked the top skills based on the percentage of Technical Product Manager resumes they appeared on. When going this route, it’s essential to have completely thought through your experiment. We run these experiments using the concept of A/B testing. 655 Montgomery St Start with your hypothesis and be sure it is fully socialized. A core understanding of product complexity from a code perspective ensures proper team collaboration, respect, and expectations. Here's a list of skills that tech companies look for in product managers: Technical Skills - Coding level knowledge. Product Manager, Project Manager, and Business Analyst. There is also a new kind of product manager role emerging at product-led organizations. Given the wide array of options for which technical skills a product manager could attempt to master, we’ve come up with a top five that would burnish any product manager’s resume and are applicable to nearly every segment and industry. In addition to technical and management skills, product managers need to consider the industry they work in. Ability to work well with internal teams, including developers, engineers, architects, quality assurance and operations. For example, you could whip up a prototype, run some A/B tests with it, and then analyze the data in Excel. Want to see how many orders this month were for Premium versus Basic? There was no way to know if one option was better than another, so you’d simply bet on a horse and see if it won. Think of the client as the … You will spend a lot of time writing. Let’s start with the “soft skills”:Â. Some companies prefer software development as a prerequisite for product managers, Some don't. In other words, the product manager is basically the go-to point person for any product-related decisions. The future is product-led. If you want to be a successful product manager, you’d better have serious people skills. The sample job description below shows a list of important duties, tasks, and responsibilities that make up the daily work activities of most technical product managers: Suggest workable solutions to development teams with consideration for product contract, positioning, and market requirements Monitor and analyze market trends San Francisco, CA 94111, Raleigh Oh, one more thing: The product manager needs to accomplish all of this on time and on budget.Â. When it comes to Product Manager Skills, you should include both Hard Skills and Soft Skills in your resume. Surprise Insights: Coping with Unexpected Product Feedback. You will own the entire product lifecycle from strategic planning to tactical implementation to measurement and ongoing optimization, all with an eye on driving growth. As someone in product development moves through their career, they will pick up an understanding of how products are made and be familiar with architectures, languages, and build cycles. Technical product managers have the skills to extract, analyze, and present complex datasets in ways that tell stories about existing products and make the case for future improvements. There’s a few reasons for this. We are NOT expecting you to be whipping up subroutines and doing code reviews. The problem, though, is it can be tough to get your hands on that data when you need it. And you need to know how to effectively convey your product vision in a way that brings engineers on board.Â, Successfully pitching your ideas to engineers requires a combination of enthusiastic evangelism, inspirational storytelling, and authentic empathy.Â, Being an unabashed evangelist for your product is especially critical in larger organizations where you may be competing for shared resources. Best of all, the “programming language” is all written in plain English, so it shouldn’t stump any neophytes. A product manager’s day is filled with communication tasks: meeting notes, Slack conversations, wikis, presentations, training materials, and—the Holy Grail—your product requirements document. Begin by learning about your “technology stack.” This is all of the servers, apps, databases, and types of code being used to bring your product to life. Finally, having empathy for developers is an important part of creating a productive dialog. Such tools help product managers to connect all their knowledge and skills with smart technologies and thereby optimize and structure their work and team collaboration. It’s also one of the most effective ways to achieve product success. The most common important skills required by employers are Product Marketing, Big Data, DevOps, Software Development, Machine Learning, Python and Product Management. That’s why the first technical skill we suggest all product managers master is data competency. Of course, the demands for an entry-level position and those for a more senior product leader will be different. It might be 35 years old, but the classic spreadsheet program is still as relevant as ever. You might have noticed that many of the technical skills we covered are complementary. Today, we have the opportunity to continually introduce multiple options to the market in controlled experiments. Because the product manager’s role straddles multiple functions, a lot of their time is spent juggling priorities and communicating between departments. Using the VBA coding language, it can automate any task that you might perform in a spreadsheet, such as pulling data from various sources. This requires connecting day-to-day tasks to the broader strategy so that a) initiatives are properly prioritized, and b) the extended team understands—and is inspired by—the ultimate impact of their work.Â. Use the phrase, “I would like you to be responsible for” if it helps you frame the assignment more clearly. To truly test out different variants of functionality or workflows, you’ll need to engage your engineering team. A prototype pushes things out of conceptual and provides a frame of reference for furthering the conversation. 3rd Floor PMs also need certain soft skills in order to successfully navigate the many interpersonal hurdles they have to clear on any given day. There are also some resources specifically for product managers trying to understand what SQL is and how to get started on blogs from Product Management 101 and Department of Product. Few things will cost you credibility with customers more than soliciting their opinions and then failing to act on them. Suite 1170 Below are some items typically found on a technical product manager job description: 1. Depending on your use case, the A/B test you need may be more than cosmetic. Once you’ve selected a tool (or gotten a seat license for one your company already uses), it’s time to dive into their documentation and tutorials to figure out how it works. You may at times need to employ the tools of persuasive writing to get buy in on a particular decision or justify a shift in strategy. Learn how to wrangle a dataset confidently and you’ll be able to investigate hypothesis after hypothesis without getting on the nerves of your coworkers or requesting reports and extracts that may have dubious value. Respond to their posts, and keep them in the loop with how you’re putting their valuable advice to work.Â. Basically, some people see option A, other people see option B, we see which one got better results and then pick the winner. Ability to develop marketing programs in collaboration with sales. The bottom line is that words matter, so you need to know how to use them effectively to support your agenda. A successful product manager will have a mix of both types of skill sets. As your technical toolbox fills up, you’ll find yourself able to do more things independently and become less reliant on engineering, UX, and business analysts during the earlier stages of product planning. Julie Zhou, VP of Product Design at Facebook, states: As the product manager, it’s your job to sell your ideas to the people who can bring your vision to life—the engineers. Defining this during the design phase is key to make sure what you want is being captured, tagged and categorized sufficiently. Be direct, specific, and concise. Soft skills include leadership, prioritization, and interpersonal skills. While this doesn’t mean you should cut them out of the process altogether, it does enable you to investigate and analyze things on your own. You can then do some homework to get a better understanding of their pros and cons, capabilities, and limitations. For example, 16.3% of Technical Product Manager resumes contained Product Development as a skill. Having “passionate empathy” for your customers is especially critical in today’s SaaS markets where users have many options and can switch products easily and quickly.Â, The shortest route to deep customer knowledge is direct dialog. You’ll also want to figure out how big of a sample size you’ll need to get statistically significant results. Check out part 2 for an in-depth look at essential PM skills like coding, street statistics, and running more effective meetings! And it’s about having enough influence to get buy-in and keep everyone working together toward the same goal.Â, For this, product managers need soft skills (like those on this list). These product lines are where the less technical, intelligent PM, with excellent general management and soft skills will thrive. For this, product managers need soft skills (like those on this list). delegating not only tasks but also responsibility. So without further adieu, here are five technical skills for product management you wish you already knew (and how to learn them.). 1. You can send out surveys, post questions on social media, facilitate focus groups, or initiate 1:1 conversations. Every product manager must possess strong communication skills. Your job is to use your unique blend of business and technical savvy combined with a big-picture vision and killer leadership and management skills to get us over that finish line on time and on budget.Â. Wondering where the rest of the list is? The job description shouldn’t vary that much from a “typical” product management role, however there are some responsibilities more commonly expected from a technical product manager. Product management is all about finding the right balance between your skills, your team’s skills and your users needs. If you delegate tasks but insist on still being the go-to person for all decisions, you're missing out on the opportunities to empower the people around you and lighten your own workload. Do you simply go with the best performing option or do the results spur an additional round of testing? A knowledge of user experience design (UX), ensures you to visualise a unique and usable product that fulfills expectations of a user. Self-awareness helps you stay objective so you can be an effective champion for the customer.   Â, A good product manager also takes on the responsibility of maintaining alignment between the vision for the product and the product team. The role often also includes contributions to positioning, messaging, and pricing strategy.Â. LeMay offers a few suggestions for effective delegation, including: Because product managers are used to taking responsibility for so much, they often lack experience asking for help. Take the time to get to know your customers. Hard skills, also referred to as technical skills, include learned skills in creating a product roadmap or product strategy, writing technical specs, or programming skills. Finally you’ll want to establish what the outcomes of the test will drive. Skills to analyze data from multiple viewpoints including market data, competitive offerings, and other information sources. What new problems would you like it to help you solve. We have compiled a list of 6 essential hard skills that all product managers should master. Product coach and consultant Matt LeMay advocates delegating not only tasks but also responsibility. Invite them to consult you if necessary, but otherwise make it crystal clear that they have complete ownership. Then you want to show it in a graph? Tools like Optimizely enable experiments on your actual web site or apps, randomly segmenting visitors so they’ll have different experiences. Next you’ll need to determine if two options (A & B) are sufficient, or if you need to get into a true multivariate scenario. Technical skills are the abilities and knowledge needed to perform specific tasks. At the same time, the PM needs to articulate and champion their own vision for the product. While a technical background is a mandatory prerequisite for becoming a product manager, there are some technical skills worth having in your toolbox as a PM. Editor’s note: This is part 1 of 2. Product management is a vital role that sits at the intersection of multiple functions. Attention to Detail; Critical Thinking; Organization; Prioritizing; Time Management; Working Independently; Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Supervision; Developing Cases for New Products/Features; Driving Product Strategy; Documentation; Product Feature Definition; Product Implementation; Product Improvements; Product Launch; Product Strategy As the product manager, you are a repository keeper of all product knowledge. Technical skills augment your value to the organization and increase the trust and credibility you seek from your colleagues. Ideally, you’ll be able to do this without tapping a data scientist on your team on the shoulder for answers. The best Product Managers have skills like product management, product strategy, product roadmap, engineering, design, marketing, startup environment, and customer research on their You don’t need a degree in business or finance to be a … You will craft a roadmap informed by market fit, product requirements, customer needs, and the go-to-market strategy. Analytical Skills Business and technical skills are important, but you won’t be able to bring your product vision to life without similarly strong leadership and interpersonal skills.Â, Product management isn’t just about being a taskmaster—it’s about supporting and empowering others by understanding their strengths and weaknesses. You don’t need to be an expert on day one, but the more you learn about your particular business, the better decisions you’ll make. You can learn from the experts at W3Schools or take a course on Learning SQL or Analyzing Business Metrics from CodeAcademy. As software continues to eat the world, the product manager has become an increasingly important role. To ease into it, there are some tools that facilitate experimentation without any real coding. However, regardless of title all product managers need to demonstrate the same “soft” skills necessary for executing on product management best practices — including clear communication, leadership, diplomacy, and compassion. They need to deftly communicate at multiple levels across the organization in order to effectively ship new products. What is it about this product that resonates with you? Biggest fan—ready, willing, and often relate to mechanical, information technology, mathematical, or scientific tasks go... Even a lot of their pros and cons, capabilities, and then failing to act them! Your vision a reality to back it up saying that PMs must be technical from... Offer for product success as product manager, you need to be responsible if. 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