Every company strives to make the solution it offers as attractive as possible to customers belonging to its target group – and in times of dynamic market competition and increasingly demanding consumers, accomplishing this task becomes even more difficult. For this reason, companies (especially large or international ones, but more and more often smaller ones too) decide to hire an experienced and distinguished person with hard and soft skills as a product manager to oversee all processes related to the solution offered by the company. What exactly does such a person do and why are they so important to the organization these days?
Product Manager – table of contents:
- What role does the product manager play in the organization?
- Daily duties of the manager’s position
- What should a product manager be like?
- Product manager – how to become one?
- Product manager – summary
What role does the product manager play in the organization?
The main task of a product manager is to introduce a new product to the market and discover ways to improve solutions currently in the company’s portfolio. A person holding such a position is therefore responsible for both generating new ideas and for exercising control over all processes within the entire life of a product: from idea to development or withdrawal from the market. You could argue that such scope aims primarily at increasing the company’s sales results, and they in turn, depend primarily on the attractiveness of the solutions offered (according to the principle of good product=good sales). All that makes product managers essential for the company, regardless of the industry.
Daily duties of the manager’s position
What does it take to bring a new or improved solution to market? The answer to this question encompasses the basic duties carried out daily by a product manager – although naturally, it varies accordingly to the company’s offerings. Nonetheless, one has to perform certain duties following the product life cycle, such as, among others:
- Conducting a market and target group analysis – studying consumer expectations, following current trends, monitoring actions taken by competitors, etc..,
- Developing a strategy for the development of the solution – that is, how to improve it, such as in the area of eliminating defects,
- Overseeing the creation process,
- Marketing – determining methods of distribution, promotion, etc…,
- Exercising control over the implementation of sales plans,
- Examining the effectiveness of the implementation carried out for modernization and development – from the results concludes, based on which it develops another strategy to achieve better sales results.
What should a product manager be like?
The basic characteristic necessary for this position is creativity. It allows you to devise (sometimes completely from scratch) an attractive solution, develop it and come up with a sales and promotion strategy that brings about the expected results. Analytical skills will undoubtedly come in handy in this regard, as the life cycle of a solution always begins with research and study of the current situation. Moreover, since the daily duties of product managers cover numerous areas (from management to R&D to marketing and sales) and usually manage their department, such individuals should stand out with highly developed interpersonal skills.
Product manager – how to become one?
People employed in this position typically have a degree in marketing or management, but very often they come from the IT industry. However, it is not mandatory to complete such studies to perform this role well – training, courses or post-graduate studies in the above-mentioned areas can have equal value too when it comes to acquiring knowledge and skills in understanding customer needs and conducting marketing research.
You can also opt for dedicated training courses that end with a certificate. When recruiting for this position, it is advisable to have experience working in sales or marketing, as well as in the area of team management and have a perfect grasp of the specifics of the industry in which the company seeking a manager operates.
Product manager – summary
A product manager is a person valued in a company – not only because of the important role (significantly influencing the sales results achieved by the organization, but also knowledge, experience and skills in various areas. Recruiting for such a position does not come easily to HR departments, but finding the right person can translate into further development of the company, building its position in the market and achieving better results in terms of competitiveness (in the eyes of both customers and potential candidates).
When it is increasingly difficult to reach consumers with an offer and build loyalty with them, the importance of this challenge only continues to grow.