10 episodes

Learn from some of the best product managers in the world through conversations hosted by The Product Management Center at the University of Washington. In each episode, Jeff Shulman, Red Russak & Soumeya Benghanem dive into the tools, frameworks, and thought processes that will help drive success in product management.

How To Succeed In Product Management | Jeffrey Shulman, Red Russak & Soumeya Benghanem Jeff Shulman, Red Russak & Soumeya Benghanem

    • Business
    • 5.0 • 11 Ratings

Learn from some of the best product managers in the world through conversations hosted by The Product Management Center at the University of Washington. In each episode, Jeff Shulman, Red Russak & Soumeya Benghanem dive into the tools, frameworks, and thought processes that will help drive success in product management.

    9: Thinking Through Assumptions and Managing the Risks

    9: Thinking Through Assumptions and Managing the Risks

    In this episode of the How to Succeed in Product Management Podcast, marketing professor Jeff Shulman and The Product Management Center advisory board members Red Russak and Soumeya Benghanem welcome Dontae Delgado (Compass) and Siddhartha Rabindran (Microsoft) to discuss managing assumptions and start ranking them from the top most important to the least important, and build a framework around it to help develop the product. Assumptions, when correctly utilized and tested in the right environment exponentially helps product leaders find success. 


     


    Support for How to Succeed in Product Management is brought to you by Apptentive, which enables product managers to measure shifts in customer emotion and gather actionable feedback across the mobile customer journey. To learn more, go to Apptentive.com/UW.


     


    What to Listen For:


    00:00 Intro

    01:42 The importance of managing assumptions and risk management

    03:46 It’s easy to become comfortable with the flows of the product

    05:11 Clarity plays an important role in managing assumptions

    08:44 The different classifications of assumptions

    10:45 Approach is the most important part of addressing assumptions

    13:55 Assumption prompts to make assumptions explicit

    15:52 The build versus buy evaluation

    19:53 After generating assumptions, start ranking them

    23:36 Critical path is about the solution and the framing

    24:25 Proper documentation is key to effective communication

    27:17 Situations that could happen when assumptions aren’t made

    29:45 Reference books and resources for assumption management

    37:04 How do you go about validating assumptions?

    40:31 The product team considers four important things: product, market, channels, and business model

    43:42 Producer and consumer framework in critical in managing expectations

    47:31 Building a culture of domain empathy

    50:28 Assumptions are an integral part of everything we do

    54:13 Assumptions are linchpin to product success

    55:29 Some assumptions, when utilized correctly or incorrectly, either hurt or help the products

    • 58 min
    8: Understanding the Product Development Life Cycle

    8: Understanding the Product Development Life Cycle

    In this episode of the How to Succeed in Product Management Podcast, marketing professor Jeff Shulman and The Product Management Center advisory board members Red Russak and Soumeya Benghanem welcome Kavita Kamani (Microsoft) and Howard Ro (Tesla) to discuss the life cycle of product development, where to focus your attention to in whichever product development phase, identifying what should be considered valuable and what’s not, and tackling product management while maintaining a work-life balance.


     


    Support for How to Succeed in Product Management is brought to you by Apptentive, which enables product managers to measure shifts in customer emotion and gather actionable feedback across the mobile customer journey. To learn more, go to Apptentive.com/UW.


     


    What to Listen For:


    00:00 Intro

    02:27 The importance of the product development life cycle

    06:29 Two points of view on the general concept of a product life cycle

    09:09 Five D’s of a product life cycle

    15:25 Asking a lot of questions help determine exactly where to focus on

    17:57 Getting a clear idea if a problem is worth solving

    19:47 Initial ideation and operating without boundaries

    21:14 When there is tension and no easy answer

    27:12 Different organizations have different structures and different expectations

    31:11 Within the applications, what is truly valuable and what is not?

    34:22 Focus on what's the core problem and what you're going after

    39:26 Ensure that everybody is aligned to the common goals

    43:16 Find a balance between the user outcome and stakeholder outcome

    48:51 Bringing focus back to what you need to do

    51:05 Work-life balance: assess or associate your happiness with impact

    58:52 If you want to succeed as a PM, own the job

    01:00:04 Don’t try to be everything for everyone

    • 1 hr 3 min
    7: Build Your Product Management Career Around Empathy

    7: Build Your Product Management Career Around Empathy

    In this episode of the How to Succeed in Product Management Podcast, marketing professor Jeff Shulman and The Product Management Center advisory board members Red Russak and Soumeya Benghanem welcome Kevin Shah (T-Mobile) and Lisa Huang-North (Microsoft) to discuss why product managers need empathy when communicating with customers and while building their career, as well as finding the balance between being empathetic and product success.  


     


    Support for How to Succeed in Product Management is brought to you by Apptentive, which enables product managers to measure shifts in customer emotion and gather actionable feedback across the mobile customer journey. To learn more, go to Apptentive.com/UW.


     


    What to Listen For:


    00:00 Intro

    03:53 Empathy also matters in how you manage your career

    07:36 Do you understand where you are in your personal journey?

    10:13 We suffer from survivor bias

    13:33 The lack of empathy to certain stakeholders or groups can show up in the execution

    16:12 Don’t focus on the persona and characteristics, focus on the needs and problems

    22:15 Data communication depends on the channels already established

    24:48 What’s important to users vs what’s important to the company

    27:16 Try to understand where the misalignment is happening

    28:06 Come back to the pain points you’re trying to address

    31:03 Feeling empowered and having an authentic PM mindset 

    34:10 An executive does not understand the customers as well as the PMs do

    38:53 Myth: “I’m not a great sales person and that’s why I think I’ll be a great PM.”

    43:02 Best relationship between sales and products are centered around culture

    44:56 Product managers are artists and creators 

    49:19 Logically group your community and dedicate different efforts on each segment 

    56:17 Empathy is your superpower  

    57:49 Recommended resources for PMs to get better at being empathetic

    01:01:16 Drawing a balance between empathy and profitability 

    01:04:23 Product management is a contact sport and also a team sport

    01:09:45 Own the job and be resolute with your standards  

    01:11:34 You don’t have to love something, but you have to be really curious about it

    • 1 hr 14 min
    6: Finding Clarity and Creating Alignment

    6: Finding Clarity and Creating Alignment

    In this episode of the How to Succeed in Product Management Podcast, marketing professor Jeff Shulman and The Product Management Center advisory board members Red Russak and Soumeya Benghanem welcome Josh Haftel (Adobe) and Ben Waddle (Expedia) to talk about creating a product out of an idea by breaking it down into smaller, more manageable ones for a faster turn around and quickly get customer feedback, and how product managers need to work with their team instead of managing it.


     


    Support for How to Succeed in Product Management is brought to you by Apptentive, which enables product managers to measure shifts in customer emotion and gather actionable feedback across the mobile customer journey. To learn more, go to Apptentive.com/UW.


     


    What to Listen For:


    00:00 Intro

    01:10 A PMs job is finding clarity and then creating alignment

    06:35 The Discovery and Framing framework

    09:58 Always start at the fundamentals

    15:01 Take the big things down and break them down

    17:47 Fail quickly then go into future iterations

    19:53 What kind of experimentation should you be doing?

    25:31 Pick a problem that you might have some passion for  

    28:12 Come up with hypotheses about why something's going to work versus why it's not going to work

    30:39 Look for skills that your team currently don’t have

    33:34 Understand who you need to influence and tailor your work products accordingly

    38:38 Start with what outcomes matter to the audience you’re speaking to

    42:52 The fastest way to get something into the hands of the customers

    45:30 Break down big assumptions into smaller ones

    50:23 Partner with your team to arrive at the best solution

    52:55 As a product manager, you don’t manage anybody

    • 58 min
    5: Product Improvement through Experimentation

    5: Product Improvement through Experimentation

    Today, in the How to Succeed in Product Management Podcast, Jeff and Red welcome our panel of experts on product management to talk about experimentation and how to test ideas before and after launch. They discuss how talking to the customers is a form of experimentation, the statistical significance of what the customers are telling you and how it reflects the different milestones and development of the product.


     


    Support for How to Succeed in Product Management is brought to you by Apptentive, which enables product managers to measure shifts in customer emotion and gather actionable feedback across the mobile customer journey. To learn more, go to Apptentive.com/UW.


     


    What to Listen For:


    00:00 Intro

    01:10 This week’s topic: Experimentation

    06:00 Why is experimentation an important process for PMs?

    08:50 Talking to customers is another form of experimentation

    13:00 Statistical significance is a big challenge for B2B product managers

    16:50 Understand the audience and segment the data finely

    19:42 Some customers do not understand the product and product offers

    22:07 Learn from the outcomes when the product is launched 

    24:40 Every decision is different from the previous depending on the options available

    29:23 How to go about web product management with less manpower and resources?

    31:34 Product market fit is where most startups struggle with 

    35:28 PMs must have a vision and a really good understanding of where you’re going

    36:49 Balance between understanding your customers and manage your stakeholders

    40:04 Ask customers: now how they found you, what they like you and what they don’t like about you

    43:46 PMs must know how things work but allow specialist to patch in their piece 

    45:36 Awareness who you’re talking to and what they need to know to be successful

    49:00 Choose causation over correlation

    50:21 You need both quantitative and qualitative data

    • 55 min
    4: Getting Into Product Management From A Non-Traditional Background

    4: Getting Into Product Management From A Non-Traditional Background

    Today, in the How to Succeed in Product Management Podcast, Jeff and Red welcome our panel of experts on product management to talk about becoming a product manager coming from a different background. The shift in interest from your educational background or career to becoming a customer-oriented problem solver opens a path to become a great PM. Listen in and join them as they share their minds, experiences, and expertise on what helps aspiring PMs to  successfully join this competitive ecosystem.  


     


    Support for How to Succeed in Product Management is brought to you by Apptentive, which enables product managers to measure shifts in customer emotion and gather actionable feedback across the mobile customer journey. To learn more, go to Apptentive.com/UW.


     


    What to Listen For:


    00:00 Intro

    01:20 PMs from non-traditional background bring in new thinking and perspectives

    06:15 Learning product management from best practices from a global perspective

    10:47 True or false: “If you don’t know how to code you can’t be a good PM.” 

    12:55 Coding may not matter in most environments, it could in smaller startups

    16:03 Is being a scrum master a traditional path to becoming a PM?

    18:35 Scrum masters tend to work inside of development chops

    21:56 UX designers should have an artistic expertise

    23:50 Try low resolution experimentation, don’t be afraid to try something that looks horrible

    26:00 An example of low-res that works

    31:26 The Product Management Life Cycle model

    33:20 Educate yourself if you want to break into product management

    34:37 Understand what’s required for the job and what do you have in terms of skills

    36:54 The language we use differs in different ecosystems

    39:19 Find out how does a product life cycle work

    40:09 To connect with companies and industries, tap on the networking side

    44:10 Managing physical, digital, and software products

    47:16 Customer care and problem solving opens a path to product management

    48:43 Stay curious and always ask questions

    50:11 The person who understand the customers the most matters

    51:16 Build site projects, invest in networking, and volunteering opportunities

    • 54 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
11 Ratings

11 Ratings

sobehounds ,

Great minds and panelists

Great coverage on real life reflection on how to succeed in product management. Thank you for making this available for those of us who sometimes miss these conversations!

BVS Hush ,

Great listen!

As a consumer, I think it’s insightful to see things from the product management side. These guys present thought provoking topics. Thanks!

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