Here’s a question I’ve been asked recently:
I’d appreciate your advice on working for the GDS and different ministries. I have recently applied for senior positions (Deputy Director and Head of Product) at GDS and another UK government department.
On both occasions I was told that while I had the skills, my previous products had not been used by the millions of users, rather the hundreds of thousands, and therefore I was not considered the right person for the role.
This seems unusual given that building for 6 figure as oppose to 7 figure usage would not make that much difference in my opinion.
Could you recommend anything I could do to improve my suitability for next time a role like that comes available?
Read on for my reply.
Lovely Wife announced the other day that she is now an agile worker.
I’ll not lie: my eyebrow involuntarily rose an inch or two. I wasn’t aware such a product development methodology had reached the legal profession.
Early on in my blog, I wrote one of my most popular posts – 4 key ways to spot a successful product manager – about measuring the performance of product managers. The problem is that a lot – and I mean a huge amount – has changed in product management, and my own approach, since I wrote it.
I found myself describing to Martin Eriksson at his recent book launch some work I did at the UK’s Ministry of Justice on measuring product manager performance. So here’s an update to my original article from a real-life case study.
In addition to the ‘soft’ skills I discussed in the last post, a good product manager also needs ‘hard’ skills (product management techniques).
Read on for my list of the 16 most important technical skills a product manager needs.
(There is a point to these two listicles. It’s coming next post.)
I’m often asked what skills a product manager needs. In my view at least, a good product manager needs both ‘soft’ skills (emotional intelligence) and ‘hard’ skills (product management techniques).
Read on for my list of the 12 most important soft skills a product manager needs.
I bet you’ve found yourself in this situation. You’re trying to get your head around the main user problem your new product is going to solve. The thing is, for every question you try to answer, several more questions arise.
This is an interview I did a little while ago with a user experience author living on the US East Coast. She was interested in moving into freelance product management.
- how to move into product management;
- differences between working in the private and public sectors;
- KPIs and financial modelling; and
- the pleasures and pains of being a product manager.
When it comes to the ecommerce checkout process, what’s one thing that retailers are doing wrong? What’s one thing they’re doing right?
From a product manager’s perspective, there’s no one thing everyone gets wrong – it depends entirely on the circumstances.
This is why context and understanding of user needs are so important. Figure out what people need – their goals, frustrations, distractions… everything – then figure out how well your ecommerce capability meets those needs. Improve, then rinse and repeat.
And don’t forget Marty Cagan’s observation that “people don’t know what they need until after they’ve seen it”.
Read the other 20 opinions over on whatusersdo.com.