I’ve seen some patterns in how companies recruit their Heads of Product (aka Chief Product Officer, VP Product, Director of Product Management, or Group Product Lead). This post unpacks some fundamental misconceptions — and how to get the strong product leadership we need.
Career paths for product folks are murky, with most of us falling into product management accidentally. Opportunities for advancement can be just as unclear. How do we think about product leadership roles, and how might we pursue them?
I talk with lots of senior individual contributors about the risks and challenges of moving “up the ladder” into product leadership roles. Here’s a survey I fielded to capture their top questions and concerns about getting promoted. What do product leaders do? How do product managers signal their interest in becoming one?
A short talk about Paying It Forward and the important of personal networking in the product management community. I share three personal vignettes to highlight value of personal networking and ways we can all Pay It Forward to build an even stronger product community.
This Product Camp discussion focused on career ladders for product managers, what directors do that’s different from their individual contributors, and how to signal your interest if you want that next job up. Several participants raised real-world issues, and product veterans sharing their hard-won points of view.
Various product management schools, workshops and certificate programs strongly suggest that attendees will get jobs as product managers. Success metrics seem critical here, but are notably missing. “Of the people who’s already spent thousands of their own dollars on this course, how many are now working as product managers…?”