What is Product Management?
Product management, equally integral to big tech companies and traditional ones, involves planning, developing, launching, and managing a product or service. Any business with a website or an application employs product managers who ensure the smooth functioning of the same.
Conventionally, product managers needed a computer science or engineering degree. Today neither is essential to achieve excellence in product management. Instead, a mix of hard and soft skills, such as teamwork and collaboration, prove more important. As long as the product manager’s focus is on the user and their needs, arriving at a solution is possible.
How to Learn Product Management?
Product management entails an insightful view of customer needs and emerging market trends. Professionals in this field also consider the product’s objective and potential life cycle to manage it effectively. It is a dynamic and fast-growing field, driven by motivated self-starters.
There are numerous ways to gain expertise in product management. With the proliferation of online product management courses, aspiring, as well as experienced product managers, can gain a thorough understanding of the key aspects of the role. It’s important to remember that product management is widely perceived as interdisciplinary, cutting across IT, engineering, sales, public relations, and finance. Online courses, along with books, tutorials, and some hands-on experience, offer deep insights into the intrinsic nature of product management.
Related Content: How to Become a Project Manager
What skills are related to product management?
As with all customer-driven fields, achieving proficiency in product management requires a blend of technical and soft skills. Experts often prioritize the latter's role in recent times, citing emotional intelligence or EQ as one of the primary attributes of a successful product manager.
Nurturing such soft skills as a core competency is pivotal in forming and fostering long-term relationships with stakeholders. It makes way for mutual trust and transparency, thus driving a product’s vision to realization. Furthermore, a communicative and emotionally intelligent product manager can also empathize with workers, thus fostering a healthy work culture.
On the other hand, hard skills are more industry-specific. For example, product managers must familiarize themselves with Agile development methodologies, such as the Scrum framework, market research, and A/B testing. In addition, working with databases is essential and requires a rudimentary understanding of SQL. Though, such hardcore technical skills may not be necessary for a product manager working in retail.
However, no matter the industry, all product managers are savvy with market trends and have an analytical knowledge of the business. They are attuned to customer needs and insightful enough to build products with significant utility and longer shelf lives.
What Jobs Use Product Management?
While product management is necessary for virtually every industry, there is a wide diversity of roles within the field. Mistakenly enough, the terms seem interchangeable. But it’s noteworthy that each job has specific responsibilities, and all work together to effectively create and manage a profitable product.
Various job roles across the board require proficiency in product management. Some of these include business analyst, chief product officer, director of product management, product manager, product owner, technical product manager, and vice-president of product.
Depending on the company's hierarchy, each role entails a different scope of decision-making and authority. For instance, a vice president typically acts as a spokesperson for the organization given their years of experience and insight. On the other hand, the technical product manager has a more internal focus. They are also responsible for observing competitors’ strategies and emerging technologies.
Why take an online course at Emeritus?
Each Emeritus online course is designed keeping key learning outcomes in mind by a team of experts. We use the backward design methodology to develop instruction for learners of all ages. This enables us to craft unique, interactive, learning experiences that include a combination of assessments, hands-on activities, skill application, and more.
Emeritus also collaborates with the best universities and faculty around the world to curate the course curriculum that can effectively tackle present challenges in the industry, while preparing you for the trends and risks in the future. Our courses consist of assignments, exams, capstone projects, networking opportunities, a fine balance of practical and theoretical concepts, and the opportunity to learn from top minds in the industry. This adds to the holistic experience we try to provide for each learner.
We are also focused on providing courses that are standardized in quality. This is done by adhering to standards set by a global organization called Quality Matters which is focused on providing quality standards for online and innovative digital teaching and learning environments. The rigorous criteria ensures all our learners invest in quality education that is easily accessible and affordable.
Can I work full-time while learning product management online?
Online product management courses are usually self-paced and packed with information and exercises that learners of all levels can attempt. Dedicating regular time, however short, can significantly augment one’s proficiency in marketing. Therefore, working full-time while pursuing an online degree is an attainable goal.
How valuable is an online marketing certificate?
A certificate is proof that one has a close understanding of product management, its fundamentals, and the more advanced concepts. Most online product management courses offer certification highlighting that a job-seeker is aptly skilled and driven to learn. Demonstrating such attributes can significantly boost one’s employability.