I popped over to Bristol recently to guest host the Threads meetup. Threads is a monthly roundtable discussion for entrepreneurs and founders of technology scale-up businesses based in the South West of England.
This month’s topic was on product management in general. For most around the table, it was a completely or relatively new concept, so our lively discussion started with the fundamentals.
If you’re also interested in learning about the fundamentals of product management, handily I have a day’s training course that covers that very topic.
Contact me if you’d like to attend product management training.
You can find the write-up, with comments from me over on the Techspark blog.
People ask me from time to time about how they can get into freelance product management. Here’s a recent question:
I’ve been working as a product manager for 5 years now. I worked in different industries (financial, loyalty, media, fintech) and now I am starting to manage a team of product managers and setting up a product team as a senior product manager, as well as managing my own product.
I was thinking about starting consulting in 2-3 years of time. What are the skill sets I need to focus on and improve during this time period?
Read on for my reply.
What does it mean to be a good product manager in 2018?
I’ve not published a great deal on the blog recently. In my defence, I’ve been doing a fair amount of paid writing work and my brain has run out of words temporarily.
If you’re interested, I’m writing (then delivering) a new training workshop on metrics and analytics for the lovely Mind The Product folks for their 2018 London conference; and I’m in the midst of writing a new talk on ethics in product management for DevTalks Bucharest.
Tickets are on sale for both, and the first lucky five readers can get free DevTalks tickets using the code JOCK18 or JOCKB18.
That’ll be a good test to see who’s paying attention :-)
And if you’d like me to write training or articles on product management for you, please get in touch.
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.)