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So, you think you want to be a Product Manager

A presentation on a talk I gave to a group thinking about going into Product Management. Talks a little about the role, some reasons you shouldn't be a PM, and how to get into the field. I am currently a Product Manager at Facebook, formerly at TinyCo & Zynga

These are the slides from a talk I gave for Management Leadership For Tomorrow (MLT) at their Tech Bootcamp in New York (5/29/15).

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So, you think you want to be a Product Manager

  1. 1. So, You Think You Want To Be A Product Manager? Damien Peters
  2. 2. Who are you? • Product Manager at Facebook • Former PM @ TinyCo & Zynga • Founder of • Former Booz Allen Hamilton Engineer & Consultant • MBA – MIT Sloan • BS in CS & Econ – University of Maryland • From Washington, DC / Maryland
  3. 3. So, What is a Product Manager? *The Caveat* The Role and Skills Vary Widely by Company & Product
  4. 4. So, What is a Product Manager? The Core Skills • Leadership • Communication • Analysis & Data Driven Decision Making • Creativity & Design Sense • Problem Solving
  5. 5. What’s The Most Important Skill? Solve any and all problems stopping you’re team from executing against your product vision
  6. 6. Why Don’t I Want to Be a PM? • You like to manage people • You are a “big picture” person • You like to know what to do and get it done • You don’t like failure • You like to sleep & stress isn’t you’re thing • You like to work with one team • You think engineers are weird
  7. 7. Why Do You Like Product Management? • The joy of creating something • Immense impact to your company • Constant and changing set of challenges • Building a mix set of skills that are universally applicable • Respect
  8. 8. How do I become a PM? • Learn the Company, Learn the Market, Learn the Product, Learn their Interview • Practice product case questions • Answer the following: – Why do you want to be a PM? – What’s a Product you love and how can it be improved? – What would you build for this company? Crushing the Interview
  9. 9. How do I become a PM? • Stop focusing on the implementation • Work on and build you’re product sense • Stop being anti-social • Build something from scratch You have a technical background
  10. 10. How do I become a PM? • Find companies looking for your background • Become Technical (or at least closer to it) • Drop the ego • Build the key PM skills • Build Something • Learn the lingo • Make the lateral move • Be realistic You are not technical
  11. 11. How do I become a PM? Cracking the PM Interview By Gayle Laakmann McDowell Decode & Conquer By Lewis Lin
  12. 12. Questions?