Critical Skills to Develop as a New Product Manager in Your First 6 Months

In the PMHQ Slack community, we regularly get thought-provoking questions that we feel should be explored in-depth and documented for future reference. We’re starting a new set of Q&A posts called Highlights to dive into these kinds of questions, and enable everyone in the community to revisit the answers and contribute further!

“If you could learn anything from anyone in your first 6 months as a PM, what single thing would you want them to teach you?” 

Our community tackled this question with gusto! Interestingly, few people shared the same perspective on what one thing they wish they knew as a new PM.

The answers revolved around the following themes:

  • Mental frameworks
  • Scope of responsibilities
  • Focus
  • Metrics
  • Confidence
  • Communication

1) Mental Frameworks Continue Reading

5 Tips for New Product Managers

New Product Manager Starting off as a new product manager might seem daunting. There are so many things to learn in such a short period of time, and you’re expected to provide the vision and roadmap for your team almost right away.

This post will cover some tips to help new product managers start off on the right foot. From understanding the market to meeting your team to getting the big picture, these action items provide a nice framework to approach the product manager role, whether you’re new to the company, the industry, or the profession itself.

1. Understand the market, the customers, and the product

One of the most important first steps for a new product manager is to understand the market. The best way to do so is to get as close to the customer as you can. Figure out how your company interacts with customers (listening labs, customer visits, formal/informal focus groups) and set a schedule right away to get involved. You want to understand the market and customer needs as quickly as you can because it will allow you to craft a great end product. Starting with the group that will be directly affected by that product is a good bet. Continue Reading

Top 5 Steps to Ramping Up as a New Product Manager

Top 5 Steps to Ramping Up as a New Product Manager

Like any other job, product management can oftentimes be a very overwhelming experience for any individual joining a new company. When I first transitioned into my first product role, I was completely lost and found myself scrambling to different meetings without proper context of what was going on. As I’ve watched and helped new product managers ramp up in our company, I’ve found that it’s important to take the following 5 steps as a new product manager:

1) Meet Everyone on the Team

Some of the most successful PMs we’ve onboarded have immediately taken the time to introduce themselves and schedule 1 on 1 chats with every member of the team. It’s important not to be over-intrusive here, look for times when team members aren’t swamped to schedule chats and get to know everyone on a personal level. Continue Reading