Tips for Product Management Survival

November 14, 2014

Product Leadership

Last week, we were at #UserConf, the UserVoice/CoSupport event dedicated to meeting customer needs.

We were keen to find out how all the smart product people in the room survive the product jungle. And to thank them for sharing their insight, we gave away hand-packed product survival kits with everything from post-its to headphones to handy notebooks.

Truly inspired by the great tips that came out of the room, we wanted to share some of that golden advice with you, to help you better survive product management too.

Discipline yourself on methodology

In the product jungle, arm yourself with analysis to make confident decisions that you can get your team behind. But remember, data is there to help you to make decisions not to make them before you. Finding the right place for statistics in your product management processes is a solid way to help you survive.

https://twitter.com/katebennet/status/530851350569959424

Channel your inner strength

An important skill for product managers hoping to survive a constant onslaught of requests and suggestions is to develop a strong mental barrier around the product vision. The UserConf crowd captured this beautifully in their top tips. The best thing you can do for your users to remain focused on their ultimate goals and never let up. https://twitter.com/AradiaAjiin/status/530860723149094912

Turn to invaluable resources for support

Much like any other survival strategy, it’s important to remember you’re not alone! You’ve got a whole team around you who can help you to reach the right answers and deliver great products. At UserConf we all recognized the value of a wicked support team to get to the heart of user needs.

Get in the spirit of Product with your team

And last, but certainly not least, a great attitude will take you far. Whatever it takes you to get in the zone – be that a good tune or an indulgent snack – everyone has a secret weapon for product management survival that’s waiting to be unleashed.


What’s your best tip for product management survival? Share with us in the comments below, or by tweeting us at @ProdPad.

And if you haven’t already, sign up for a 14 day free trial of the ProdPad Toolkit to see how we can help.

Janna Bastow is co-founder of ProdPad, software that helps product managers plan and deliver better products. Janna also organizes ProductTank events around the world, including Mind The Product, a global community of product managers. She likes to inspire great product conversations by asking: β€œWhat problem are you trying to solve?”

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