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www.productschool.com
The Skills to Become a Director, VP, or
CPO by Facebook VP of Product
CERTIFICATES
Your Product Management Certificate Path
Product Leadership
Certificate™
Full Stack Product
Management Certificate™
Product Management
Certificate™
20 HOURS40 HOURS40 HOURS
Corporate
Training
Level up your team’s Product
Management skills
Free Product Management Resources
BOOKS
EVENTS
JOB PORTAL
COMMUNITIES
bit.ly/product_resources
COURSES
The skills it takes to become
Director, VP and CPO
Nikhyl Singhal • July 9, 2020
How to advance in your PM career?
● Path to Manager is clear & consistent
● Path to Director, VP and CPO is unique
for each person and company
Goal for this presentation
● Explain what boss does and their boss
● Describe skills at different exec levels
● Important input in 10 year career plan
(article available on my Medium)
About Nikhyl
Co-founder & CEO
● Cast Iron Systems (acquired by IBM)
● SayNow (acquired by Google)
Product Executive
● Google (Director for Hangouts, Photos)
● Credit Karma (Chief Product Officer)
● Facebook (VP for News Feed)
Career coaching & Mentorship
● 50+ leaders, mostly in PM
● Focus on diversity, future executives
Comparing titles
1. PM function gets more complex
with more products, people
2. Director at ‘Drunken Walk’ ≠
Director at Scale
3. VP at hypergrowth ==
Director at Scale
4. For simplicity, we’ll stick with
Scale for titles going forward
How Director, VP
and CPO roles
are different
1. Product scope
2. Trust & collaboration
3. Team building
4. Strategic skills
Product Scope
Director
Well-defined product area
Ex: Google Hangouts, Google Photos
VP
Suite of products or complete product line
Ex: Facebook News Feed
CPO
Complete set of company’s products
Ex: Credit Karma app
Challenge: more breadth means less depth
Trust & Collaboration
Director
Trust your own product team
Skill: make decisions with less information
VP
Trust other product leaders across company
Skill: learn & influence different product cultures
CPO
Trust other C-level execs (incl. biz teams & CEO)
Skill: set accurate expectations with execs with
product opinion but little background, training
Team
Director
Influence your PMs
Skill: teach your managers to manage
VP
Influence your Directors
Skill: recruit execs, diversify team, fix process
CPO
Influence complete PM team & product culture
Skill: introduce new products, process, skills
while scaling what’s working
Strategy
Director
Avoid pure focus on execution
Skill: which features & resources, what sequence
VP
Avoid silos – product that looks like org chart
Skill: directors and your peers need to work
together to produce blended product
CPO
Avoid focusing on today instead of tomorrow
Skill: storytelling how products fit into company
vision, signaling how product team will get there
Conclusion
1. Directors, VPs and CPOs require
very different skills to succeed
2. Not everyone is capable or will
enjoy becoming an executive
3. Build a long term career plan
www.productschool.com
Part-time Product Management Training Courses
and
Corporate Training

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The Skills to Become a Director, VP, or CPO by Facebook VP of Product

  • 1. www.productschool.com The Skills to Become a Director, VP, or CPO by Facebook VP of Product
  • 2. CERTIFICATES Your Product Management Certificate Path Product Leadership Certificate™ Full Stack Product Management Certificate™ Product Management Certificate™ 20 HOURS40 HOURS40 HOURS
  • 3. Corporate Training Level up your team’s Product Management skills
  • 4. Free Product Management Resources BOOKS EVENTS JOB PORTAL COMMUNITIES bit.ly/product_resources COURSES
  • 5. The skills it takes to become Director, VP and CPO Nikhyl Singhal • July 9, 2020
  • 6. How to advance in your PM career? ● Path to Manager is clear & consistent ● Path to Director, VP and CPO is unique for each person and company Goal for this presentation ● Explain what boss does and their boss ● Describe skills at different exec levels ● Important input in 10 year career plan (article available on my Medium)
  • 7. About Nikhyl Co-founder & CEO ● Cast Iron Systems (acquired by IBM) ● SayNow (acquired by Google) Product Executive ● Google (Director for Hangouts, Photos) ● Credit Karma (Chief Product Officer) ● Facebook (VP for News Feed) Career coaching & Mentorship ● 50+ leaders, mostly in PM ● Focus on diversity, future executives
  • 8. Comparing titles 1. PM function gets more complex with more products, people 2. Director at ‘Drunken Walk’ ≠ Director at Scale 3. VP at hypergrowth == Director at Scale 4. For simplicity, we’ll stick with Scale for titles going forward
  • 9. How Director, VP and CPO roles are different 1. Product scope 2. Trust & collaboration 3. Team building 4. Strategic skills
  • 10. Product Scope Director Well-defined product area Ex: Google Hangouts, Google Photos VP Suite of products or complete product line Ex: Facebook News Feed CPO Complete set of company’s products Ex: Credit Karma app Challenge: more breadth means less depth
  • 11. Trust & Collaboration Director Trust your own product team Skill: make decisions with less information VP Trust other product leaders across company Skill: learn & influence different product cultures CPO Trust other C-level execs (incl. biz teams & CEO) Skill: set accurate expectations with execs with product opinion but little background, training
  • 12. Team Director Influence your PMs Skill: teach your managers to manage VP Influence your Directors Skill: recruit execs, diversify team, fix process CPO Influence complete PM team & product culture Skill: introduce new products, process, skills while scaling what’s working
  • 13. Strategy Director Avoid pure focus on execution Skill: which features & resources, what sequence VP Avoid silos – product that looks like org chart Skill: directors and your peers need to work together to produce blended product CPO Avoid focusing on today instead of tomorrow Skill: storytelling how products fit into company vision, signaling how product team will get there
  • 14. Conclusion 1. Directors, VPs and CPOs require very different skills to succeed 2. Not everyone is capable or will enjoy becoming an executive 3. Build a long term career plan
  • 15. www.productschool.com Part-time Product Management Training Courses and Corporate Training