Many moving parts help keep the company running if we look at any large corporation. These are departments and the people who work in each of them. The world is fragmented to smaller parts to ensure efficiency and faster working.
The most important part of this company structure is the person on top. The manager holds a lot of responsibilities and must ensure all the staff working under his/her chain of command are working efficiently. They are the driving force, and they keep the establishment afloat.
Who Is A Product Manager?
A product manager is in charge of the company’s operations in creating a product. They also act as a connecting node between the business-end and the consumer-end of the company. They take charge of what products need to be developed based on the needs of the current market.
A product manager has to address the Ws and Hs of the production line. They work on everything from strategy, analytics, business development, and client servicing. They also manage the team and assign tasks and follow up on work through the day’s process.
Their main task includes running standup meetings or scrum management, assisting on strategy planning, writing specs, and keeping the data buckets updated. They also meet with all the members of the team to address their concerns. Lastly, they manage both the production and the consumer data to find meaningful statistics that can help the company grow.
What Qualities Should A Product Manager Have?
Now that we know what is a product manager, it’s crucial to understand what skills set them apart. These are mostly personal traits that keep them define their role. While hard work and the working knowledge of the company’s product are the most essential, other skills enhance the quality of work.
Firstly, the manager must have top-notch organizational skills. This is important as most of the work involves splitting roles and delegating work. This quality also comes in handy with handling large volumes of data in the analytics department.
They must also be able to communicate with others effectively. They have to address the concerns of the consumers and explain tasks to the staff.
All of this will need impeccable communication and excellent people skills. They should also need to write customer stores and specs for the products, all of which need better communication.
Apart from this, time management plays a huge key. As a manager, they will be forced to take up more than one role, and they need to be able enough to allocate their time between all of these branches. They must also believe in the product and have a personal goal for the betterment of the company and the whole industry.
Prior experience in innovation and adaptation to new technology is a significant advantage. This shows that the manager will not hold on the dated ideas of managing products and move forward with the latest trends. Lastly, they must also be well-read about their area of expertise and keep a tab on all things relevant.
What Questions To Ask When Hiring?
What defines a complete hiring process is the ability to frame the best product manager interview questions. This means being able to ask just the right questions to understand if the person fits the role we just discussed above. We can mainly divide these questions into a few category bucks.
The first is around the line of work. We must first know if they are up to the mark when it comes to their job as a product manager.
Ask them why they are in this line of work and what sets them apart from the rest of the people in the field. Ask them to define what their idea of a perfect manager is and see if the definition fits your company mantra.
Next, you need to understand if the person has sufficient foresight about the industry. Ask them what they feel are the industry’s problems and what they will do to fix them. One can also question the candidates about what methods they will use to ensure product growth is consistent.
We then move on to more technical aspects of the business, like what management systems they use. Ask them what applications and software they find the ideal for faster transactions and understand if they match with those in your company. Ask them how you can also choose to deep dive into any of the specific tasks of the manager to understand if they have a comprehensive understanding.
Many companies like to give the candidate a chance to explain one of their past projects. This allows them to judge their process and understand just how much real-life experience they have under their belt. It also is an excellent way to test their presentation and communication skills.
Lastly, we must understand their ability to interact with consumers and staff. The methods and techniques used by the manager in dealing with a client or a consumer will define your company’s growth.
At the end of the day, the goal is customer satisfaction. Ask them about their past experiences with customers and how they gauge feedback and plan the roadmap ahead.
When we look at all high-performing organizations, they all have one thing common in their hiring process — adaptability to the company. Since a manager is someone who presides over a group of people, it’s a critical factor in making or breaking the company. The manager must be welcoming to change and have experience working with a diverse group of people.
Here is a pro-tip or a hack that helps understand many qualities of a candidate. Ask them to explain what the company does in a limited time or as they would explain it to a student in the fifth grade. This is a sure way to gauge a lot of the points we discussed above.
Hiring can be a cumbersome and pressure-packed task. One bad call can lead to a domino effect of errors, which is why the process must be given the right priority and done over a few months. Just a few good recommendations are not a reflection of an ideal candidate; they must fit into your company like a piece to a perfect puzzle.