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Are you a business-savvy Product Manager?

  • Here are some of the key characteristics you should have (or develop) to be a business-savvy Product Manger: – – The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines business as: “The activity of making, buying, or selling goods or providing services in exchange for money”.
  • Therefore, to understand business means to understand how your particular company makes money and what is your contribution, as Product Manager, in that whole process.
  • By understanding mission, vision and strategy, you’ll be able to align yourself and your team with the company’s goals and be much more effective when making trade-offs on your product roadmap.
  • Product Managers should be intimately familiar with how the company sells their product.
  • Especially if you are new to business, there are some staple books, like Crossing the Chasm, Build to Last and The Art of War, that are a must read for every Product Manager.

Product Managers need to be technically competent, have great soft skills and be business-savvy. But what does that really mean? In this post, I list some of the key characteristics present in all business-savvy Product Managers.

Product Managers need to be technically competent, have great soft skills and be business-savvy. But what does that really mean? In this post, I list some of the key characteristics present in all business-savvy Product Managers. Do you have them all?

When I think of business acumen, the show Shark Tank comes to mind. If you are not familiar with it, I really recommend you check it out.  The premise is that hopeful entrepreneurs pitch their company to a panel of 5 successful business people (a.k.a Sharks) in hopes of getting investment for their company.  It’s very interesting to see the pitch, the negotiation and the Shark’s rationale for investing or staying away from a particular opportunity.

You might be asking, what does that have to do with Product Management? Well, the answer is: business acumen. On the show, the contestants that do well are often the ones that understand financials, have identified a market and have a product that people want.  Non business-savvy contestants are usually eaten alive by the Sharks.

Business acumen is one of the 4 pillars of Product Leadership, but a question I often get is: what does it mean to know about business and how can I learn? This is a very valid question, and there is no simple answer. A common approach is through an MBA (Masters in Business Administration), but not everybody has the funds or time to go through one. Plus, as valuable as they are, they…

Are you a business-savvy Product Manager?

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