10 Product Manager Interview Questions Recruiters Commonly Ask

 

The current business milieu and rapid digitization have forced organizations to focus on the product management process. As a result, many companies are actively recruiting product management professionals at different levels in their organizations. In this article, we’ll start with discussing product management meaning followed by delving into the prerequisites of becoming a product manager and more.



So, what is product management? It is a business function that overlooks product development, product launch, customer satisfaction, etc. The main aim of product management is to develop a product that meets the customers’ requirements and gets high sales and profit for the business.
Although there are many contributors to the smooth functioning of the product management process, product managers (PM) play a vital role – from product development to product launch, there is no business activity that doesn’t require the expertise of a PM.
Now, before we move to understanding the skills required for a product manager, what does a product manager do, product manager interview questions, and more, let’s skim through the commonly asked product manager interview questions.

So, what is product management? It is a business function that overlooks product development, product launch, customer satisfaction, etc. The main aim of product management is to develop a product that meets the customers’ requirements and gets high sales and profit for the business.
Although there are many contributors to the smooth functioning of the product management process, product managers (PM) play a vital role – from product development to product launch, there is no business activity that doesn’t require the expertise of a PM.
Now, before we move to understanding the skills required for a product manager, what does a product manager do, product manager interview questions, and more, let’s skim through the commonly asked product manager interview questions.

Top 10 Product Manager Interview Questions

Product managers perform several tactical and strategic duties that ensure the smooth completion and execution of the product management process. Therefore, interviewers ask aspiring product managers many technical and behavioral interview questions to test their capabilities. Below are some commonly asked interview questions distinguished based on the nature of roles and responsibilities performed by product managers.

Basic Product Manager Interview Questions and Answers

What are the indicators of a well-designed product?

The dictionary defines an indicator as “a gauge or meter of a specific kind”. Similarly, a product’s design can be gauged with the help of specific indicators that measure success or failure. The indicators of well-designed products are-

  • The product is adaptive and versatile. Customers don’t need to think about how and where to use it. It intuitively sorts different needs of users.
  • The product has features that enhance the user experience.
  • The product is aesthetically appealing and unique.

Recruiting managers often ask this question to gauge your knowledge about the product life cycle process and test your understanding and clarity about the role of a product manager in these processes. Therefore, answer this product manager interview question keeping in mind the role of key performance indicators (KPI) during the life cycle of a product.

What is the difference between a project manager and a product manager?

Product managers and project managers are often confused as one entity. However, they are two different individuals who perform distinct functions in an organization. A project manager is responsible for planning, executing, and monitoring a project(s). Meanwhile, a product manager is responsible for ensuring that the product management process is carried out smoothly.
The project management process starts and ends, while product management is a continuous process. While answering this product manager interview question, highlight the differences that emphasize the above-mentioned points. Moreover, you can also discuss the meaning of product and project; and state examples of why people get confused between them.

What’s the importance of strategy in the product management process?

The dictionary defines strategy as “a plan of action designed to achieve a long-term or overall aim.” In product management, strategy plays an important role in ensuring the proper implantation of skills and resources. Moreover, many business organizations implement a dynamic business strategy to attain higher sales, profit, goodwill, customer loyalty, and more. Therefore, while answering the question, highlight the benefits of implementing a long-term strategy in the product management process.

What product management strategy or tactics will you undertake while launching a new product?

Launching a new product is one of the biggest milestones in a product manager’s career. A product manager undertakes different strategies or tactics to ensure a successful product launch. Therefore, whenever a hiring manager asks about the product management strategy undertaken while launching a product, don’t give a general answer. Instead, focus on comprehensively defining timeline, progress tracking, team effort, etc. You can also mention about different product launch strategies that won accolades.

What do you like about our company’s products? Are there any suggestions you would like to put forth?

Sometimes, recruiters ask questions like why you want to become a product manager, which company products you like, and more in the interview for a product manager’s position. These basic interview questions are asked to perplex you.

Therefore, it is highly recommended to prepare answers for these common product manager interview questions before the interview. Showcase your expertise and knowledge in your answers and impress the recruiters with ingenious and original answers.

Product Manager Technical Interview Questions and Answers

Here are some technical product manager interview questions frequently asked during the interview round.

What aspects of the product management process do you find Enthralling?

Product management is a complex process that requires specific skills to perform difficult tasks successfully. Hiring managers commonly ask this question to test the skills of an aspiring candidate. This question is your chance to boast about your skills. Therefore, herein, you can talk about your skills and explain how you apply them in the product management process.

What technical skills do you endorse, and how would you tackle a technical hiccup?

Product managers need to possess basic and technical skills to perform complex procedures efficiently. Knowledge about different product management software and techniques, pricing strategy, market research tools, and more are some of the technical skills a product manager should endorse. If the hiring manager asks this question during product manager interview, highlight your strengths and outline how your technical skills can benefit their organization. For the latter part of the question, you can illustrate a technical hiccup that you previously solved. Finally, you can share the best practices you applied and the conclusion you drew from them.

How would you handle a budget cut situation?

The product management process is incomplete without adequate allocation of budget. Therefore, a budget cut may scare a product manager as it will heavily affect the product management process. However, with experience comes expertise to deal with difficult situations like budget cuts, dynamic business environments, competitors, etc. So, while answering this product manager interview question, emphasize your ability to prioritize important tasks. It will help the recruiters peek into your working process and your skills to get work done no matter what.

Product Manager Behavioral Interview Questions

In this section, we will be looking at commonly asked behavioral-based product manager interview questions.

How do you keep your team motivated?

Product management sometimes gets mundane, and product managers should undertake steps to make it an enthralling process for their team members. An aspiring product manager must have the required skillset to induce creativity and newness into the mundane product management process. Recruiters frequently ask this question to understand the perspective of a candidate and match it with the company’s goals to see if the aspirant is an ideal match or not. Therefore, while answering this question, demonstrate your knowledge of different ways to motivate your team. You can also describe specific issues that you successfully solved in the past.

How do you tackle low-performing team members?

A product manager is responsible for managing a team of skilled and experienced product management executives, engineers, and designers. They delegate responsibilities and monitor team members’ performance for appraisal and promotion. Many times, some team members perform poorly in their tasks and duties. It is very important for the product managers to confront them, talk about their performance, and suggest ways to tackle the crisis.
Interviewers ask this question to test the capabilities of an aspiring product manager to solve problems related to businesses and resources. While answering this question, share your previous experience of dealing with low-performing team members, among others.
There are other behavioral product manager interview questions frequently asked by interviewers such as:

  • How will you convince engineers to incorporate a special feature in a product?
  • How do you solve a conflict between team members?
  • What are your strengths and weaknesses?
  • How do you manage to execute a product management plan every time without fail?

Preparing for product manager interview questions is the first step in securing the right job. However, there are several other steps that an aspiring candidate must undertake to ensure a prestigious position. In the next section, we will be looking at some prerequisites – skills, duties of product managers that recruiters often search for in candidates.

Skills Required for Product Managers

The product management process helps develop a product that matches the needs of the target customers. The success of a product management plan depends on the skills endorsed by a product manager. Here are some skills required by product managers to turn a product management plan successful.

  • Strategic thinking
  • Negotiation skills
  • Analytical skills
  • Empathy
  • Technical knowledge
  • Attention to detail
  • Long-sightedness
  • Interpersonal skills

A product manager is one of the vital pillars of the product management process. Therefore, they perform many responsibilities in their daily lives that we will now be looking at.

What Does a Product Manager Do?

  • Formulating strategies aligning the businesses’ vision and goals
  • Developing a product from scratch and deciding on its launch
  • Evaluating ideas and implementing them into the product
  • Conducting market research to understand the customer’s needs and wants
  • Interacting with customers to develop an ideal product that matches their requirements

To perform the roles and responsibilities of a product manager successfully, aspiring candidates must possess knowledge about the product management process and the relevant skills. Emeritus India’s product management online courses help candidates acquire the required knowledge to perform the roles and responsibilities successfully. We offer these courses in collaboration with top Indian and international educational institutes. Without giving it a second thought, select a product management course for yourself today.

 

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