Listen to the article
Answer these six questions to get your answer
Who came up with the last feature or product idea you built?
“What do you mean who came up with it? Well, our team did. Right? That’s how it normally works.” This kind of response is a sign of healthy product management organization, in which management sets the goals and the team is given room to figure out how to reach them.
What was the last product you decided to kill?
Another sign of an unhealthy product management culture is the inability to kill a product or idea that will not help a company reach its goals. “We never really kill anything.”
When’s the last time you talked with your customers?
Without a healthy dialogue between a company and its customers, there is no way to truly learn about what customers want or need. Product managers should be comfortable talking to customers.
What is your goal?
If the product manager cannot articulate a clear goal, it’s a sign of poor product management at the organization level. If the product manager has the goal but it is more output centric than outcome focused, this also signifies an unhealthy product team. Goals should be outcome oriented, actionable, and clearly communicated throughout the organization.
What are you currently working on?
Successful product manager talks more passionately about the problems the product development team is solving than the solutions they are shipping. I want to hear about what big problems they are tackling for the user and the business.
What are your product managers like?
As product managers, we want to work in an organization where the role is respected and well regarded. When product managers are NOT well respected, either they are too strong or too weak. A sign of a healthy product team is hearing development and Ux people say, “I love my product manager. She has clear direction, communicates well, and helps keep us stay focused on the goals and problems.”
The dream organization for product people is one that sees product managers as leaders who help shape the direction of the company and the services they provide to their customers. They are respected as partners in steering the ship forward. These six questions can help you to ensure that the company you are in — or want to join — will support and encourage you to do everything you can to succeed.
Content source: Escaping the Build Trap by Melissa Perri