What does an MBA education have to do with becoming a product manager? The role of a product manager has evolved largely over the last few years. The broad term product management now has specificities attached to it. Let's explore some product manager roles, what they involve and how does the ISB MBA fit. Mr. Ashutosh Dabral, CPO, Tata CLiQ, gave the keynote talk at the ISB Product Conclave in July 2022 and shared lessons learned from his experiences as a Product Manager. The conference brought together titans from a variety of industries to engage in conversations about developing ground-breaking products for the Indian ecosystem and product innovation to meet evolving consumer needs. Other panellists included Mr. Deepak Kumar, Associate Director of Product for Disney + Hotstar, Ms. Monika Srivastava, Senior Director of mobility for Ola, and Mr. Vikas Reddy, Head of Product at Airmeet. Check out the ISB admit stories where real ISB admits share their experiences about GMAT or GRE preparation, experiences with the ISB application process, and the ISB interview process. Hiring for the Product management is approximately 12% in the functional recruitment at ISB placements 2022. ISB MBA application deadlines 2022 - 23 for round 1 applications is 4 September 2022. If you are considering a career as a Product Manager post ISB MBA get a profile evaluation with our MBA admission consultant at GOALisB. Top seven traits to identify if you are made for Product Management:
Do you want to be a mini CEO?
Do you possess a growth mindset?
Can you imagine a new future and deliver it?
Can you identify opportunities?
Are you comfortable interacting with customers?
Are you a problem solver? Are you creative and an innovator?
Do you understand the EQ parts of of your product?
What are the different kind of Product Management Roles? There are largely three categories of Product Manager roles today:
Growth Product Manager
Technical Product Manager
Core Product Manager
If you are considering to shift to a product manager role, consider the ISB application process.
What does a Product Management interview include?
A product management interview is designed to delve into understanding how the candidate understands the important aspects of being a product manager. Following are 10 important aspects of a Product Management Interview:
Problem Solving: A case study is usually asked to gauge the problem solving skills of the candidate.
Questions may be asked around improving a certain existing product. This again is an aspect of problem solving but also involves the aspect whether the candidates ask the right questions.
Expect Guesstimates in a Product Manager interview.
Since Product Management is largely a post MBA role especially the Growth Product Manager role, pricing and customer behaviour problems are very commonly asked.
It is very important that Product Managers use the right and relevant metrics to analyse their products. Being able to specify the right metrics to measure the impact of any change or feature is also tested in the product manager interview.
Product manager roles post MBA are expected to delve into market entry and a go - to - market strategy. Problems based on these aspects of the role are very common.
Like every other profession, Product Managers have favourites. In depth analysis of a few products you appreciate as a candidate shows your professional inclination and motivations. Products that you like and why also show what are the driving factors in your decision making as a product manager. This is a counterintuitive question in a Product Manager interview.
Technology is a part and parcel of what a product manager does. Expect technology based questions in your product management interview.
Behavioural interviews have replaced the regular interview formats. Most companies have a behavioural interview section where past instances are reflected upon to predict the candidate's future behaviour.
Lastly, definitely expect the HR interview towards the last round.
Contact an expert at GOALisB to discuss your ISB MBA application assistance.
What are some companies which offer Product Manager roles at ISB?
Get in touch with an MBA admission consultant at GOALisB for assistance on your ISB application.
What are the different Product Manager roles offered to MBA graduates?
Consultant Product Manager
Senior Product Manager
Head of Product
1. Product Management Role: Product Analyst Usual Entry level: A professional with around two years of experience in a data analytics role and strong working knowledge of analytics technologies like Google Analytics, Clevertap, Adobe analytics. In addition to having great analytical skills to work as a product analyst one must posses Advanced Excel knowledge, shortcuts, lookups, pivot table, macros, and be well versed with SQL queries, R Python, SPSS, Excel at the least. 2. Product Management Role: Product Manager Usual Entry Level: 5 - 8 years of work experience depending on the organisation with atleast 1-3 years of software engineering work experience. To become a successful product manager experience with Agile and lean processes is a plus. A product manager is expected to demonstrate traits of a good leader and be efficient in stakeholder management. Great interpersonal skills are essential tools for a product manager to achieve shared goals. A great product manager must have excellent quantitative and business analysis skills along with the ability to excel in an ambiguous decision making environment. These are skills that you gain at an impactful ISB MBA program. 3. Product Management Role: Consultant Product Manager Usual Entry Level: This is a relatively more prevalent role in the International scenario than Indian. Dell Technologies internationally is currently hiring for multiple positions for this role.
Who is a consultant product manager? Someone with 5 to 8 years' experience in technical product management with a strong entrepreneurial mindset. A consultant product manager is someone who can handle product strategy, vision, implementation end to end in different client scenarios. This is a role for which a top tier MBA like the ISB MBA is almost a must. 4. Product Management Role: Senior Product Manager Usual Entry Level: Depending on the recruiting organisation the senior product manager role is offered to professionals with 3- 5 years of product management experience and overall work experience of 5 - 10 years. This is a role essentially offered to management graduates so a program like the ISB MBA is definitely helpful. Software engineering, agile development, strong domain knowledge and leadership skills are an absolute must to professionals seeking this role. 5. Role: Head of Product Usual Entry Level: This is a role for a professional who has the ability to lead the growth of the organisation through amplifying existing products to introducing new products. Knowledge of the domain, experience in software development environments, excellent business skills, team management, stakeholder management, business strategy are all key to this role. Organisations look for professionals with 8 - 15 years of product management experience to hire for this role. Top tier MBA program graduates with the potential to steer business growth are the best fit. Get in touch with an ISB admission consultant at GOALisB to chart out your plan for career growth. Who is a Product Manager?
You almost qualify for being a product manager if you are someone who is:
Have deep operations knowledge
Combined with a technical product development background
Life of a Product Manager
Speaking about a day in the life of a Product Manager, let us tell you it’s never the same as the previous one – Every single day is filled with unique challenges and progresses. Their day-to-day responsibilities encompass intense interactions with engineers, tech leads, customers, designers, legal experts, finance people, and the marketing/sales team. A Product Manager’s role displays a wide level of variance depending on the size of the company, size of the product, stage in the lifecycle of the product, and also the level of seniority. However, ultimately, the basic and crucial role of all PMs encompasses a collaborative interaction with several development teams to accomplish pre-set goals of product design, development, and customer satisfaction. What does a Product Manager do?
Undertaking core product activities such as making sound Product Requirement Documents (PRD), and contribute to the vision, ideation, and usability testing.
Colluding with the design, engineering, and cross-functional teams.
Resolving conflicts and disagreements between different teams working on a product.
Strong relationship management with the customer and customer support teams.
Working with multiple teams.
Extensive insights on industry trends, competitor intelligence, and academics.
Skills you require to become a product manager?
For most organisations you qualify to become a product manager is you have 5-10 years of experience in the specific domain.
Prior work experience as a project manager adds value to the product manager role.
Clear and strong sense of ownership and excellent communication skills are a must for being a successful product manager.
It is a role which requires you to extensively communicate your ideas and work across the organisation not only the specific department that you deal with.
The role of a product manager requires one to have a good understanding of technology.
These are closely followed by the expertise you develop through an MBA course like an ISB MBA.
Get in touch to discuss your profile and get application assistance for applying to MBA programs in Singapore with an MBA admission consultant at GOALisB. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or Call us @ +91 7719497187.
A Comprehensive Guide to Excelling in Your ISB and MBA Interviews for Product Management:
Mastering Product Management Questions Introduction Embarking on your journey towards securing admission in prestigious institutions like ISB or pursuing an MBA program is an exciting yet challenging endeavor. One of the critical aspects of your application process is the interview, where you have the opportunity to showcase your skills and expertise.
For candidates interested in product management roles, understanding the nuances of product management interview questions is crucial. In this comprehensive guide, we will delve into the intricacies of product management interview questions, provide actionable strategies to take your preparation to the next level.
Understanding the Landscape of Product Management Interview Questions:
Product management interviews are designed to assess your ability to tackle real-world challenges, make strategic decisions, and showcase your analytical thinking.
The Product Management ISB interview questions often revolve around five key areas:
Root Cause Analysis (RCA),
Metric Evaluation, and
Favourite Product inquiries.
Each of these areas provides a unique opportunity for you to demonstrate your skills. Let's explore strategies for mastering these domains.
Design: Crafting Solutions for Real-world Challenges Design challenges are at the core of product management interviews.
To excel in this area, consider these strategies:
Understand the Business Goal: Start by comprehending the overarching objective of the design challenge. This sets the foundation for your solution.
Define a North Star Metric: Depending on the context, establish a North Star metric that guides your solution and aligns with the business goal.
CIRCLE-MGMS Framework: This framework helps you analyze the design comprehensively. Utilize Design Methodologies: Consider design methodologies such as User Story Mapping, Empathy Mapping, and Customer Journey Mapping to enhance your design approach.
Root Cause Analysis (RCA): Identifying Underlying Issues RCA questions assess your ability to identify and address underlying problems.
Steps to excel in RCA in Product Management Interviews:
Deep Dive into the Issue: Understand the root causes of the problem and its impact on users, platforms, and regions.
Contextualize the Impact: Analyze the problem's scale and its implications on different aspects of the product.
Prioritize Solutions: Apply the CIRCLES Method (Context, Impact, Root Causes, Customers, Low-Hanging Fruit, Experiments, Success Metrics) to propose effective solutions.
Ready to take your interview preparation to the next level? GOALisB is your partner in conquering ISB interviews and MBA interviews.
Product Improvement: Enhancing User Experience Product improvement questions gauge your strategic thinking and user-centric approach.
Here's how to excel:
Focus on the Goal: Understand the objective of the improvement, whether it's boosting engagement or expanding the user base.
Apply the CIRCLES Method: Contextualize the improvement, analyze the impact, identify root causes, understand customer needs, suggest low-hanging fruit solutions, propose experiments, and determine success metrics.
Tie Design to Metrics: Ensure your solution is tied to relevant metrics that align with the product's goals.
Schedule mock interviews to fine-tune your skills and boost your confidence.
Metric Evaluation: Demonstrating Analytical Acumen Metric evaluation questions assess your ability to use data to make informed decisions:
Identify Relevant Metrics: Understand the context and choose metrics that align with the problem you're addressing.
Propose Data-Driven Solutions: Based on your analysis, propose solutions that leverage data to address the identified challenges.
Favourite Product Questions:
Showcasing Your Passion Favourite product questions provide insight into your personal interests and passions:
Choose a Relevant Product: Select a product that aligns with the company's domain or your own experiences.
Articulate Your Passion: Clearly communicate why you're passionate about the product and its impact on your life.
Our comprehensive interview preparation package includes tailored coaching, mock sessions, and personalized strategies to ensure you shine in your interviews.
Mastering the Two-Part Product Question:
The two-part product question is a staple in product management interviews. It evaluates your analytical skills, strategic thinking, and understanding of product ecosystems.
Let's break down how to ace this question.
Question 1: What Product Do You Love, and Why?
Genuine Passion: Choose a product you genuinely love and use.
Relevance: Opt for a product that aligns with the company's domain or your own experiences.
Impact: Explain how the product has impacted your life and why it resonates with you.
Question 2: What Is the Product Lacking, and How Would You Improve It?
Analytical Thinking: Showcase your ability to identify problems and propose solutions.
Strategic Insight: Align your suggestions with your product management expertise.
User-Centric Approach: Address user needs and pain points in your solutions.
The OBUS Framework: Structuring Your Responses During the Product Management Interview:
The OBUS framework is a powerful tool to structure your responses effectively:
Outline: Introduce the chosen product and its significance. Briefly touch on its market presence and popularity.
Business Objective: Explain the product's core mission and goals. Discuss how the product addresses user needs and pain points.
User Problems: Identify the target audience and their challenges. Deep dive into the problems the product solves for users. Compare it to competitors and emphasize its differentiating factors.
Improvements/Suggestions: Propose enhancements and suggestions based on your analysis. Align your suggestions with your product management expertise.
Business Model: Explain the product's business model and revenue generation strategy. Discuss how the business model supports the product's goals.
Applying Product Management Interview Strategies to Real Products: WhatsApp and Netflix
To truly understand how these strategies work, let's apply them to real products - WhatsApp and Netflix:
Product Management ISB Interview Example WhatsApp: Revolutionizing Communication
Outline: Introduce WhatsApp and its impact on global communication.
Business Objective: Discuss how WhatsApp aims to connect people across the globe.
User Problems: Analyze the challenges of communication barriers and high SMS costs.
Solution: Highlight WhatsApp's user-friendly interface and end-to-end encryption.
Improvements/Suggestions: Propose advanced privacy settings and improved multi-device synchronization.
Business Model: Explain WhatsApp's freemium model and revenue generation.
Metrics for Success: Highlight user engagement, active users, and business account growth.
Product Management Interview Example: Netflix: Changing the Entertainment Landscape
Outline: Introduce Netflix and its role in changing entertainment consumption.
Business Objective: Discuss Netflix's mission to entertain and inspire people.
User Problems: Analyze the challenges of limited content choices and high cable costs.
Solution: Highlight personalized recommendations and binge-worthy content.
Improvements/Suggestions: Propose refining the recommendation algorithm and introducing interactive content.
Business Model: Explain Netflix's subscription-based model and pricing tiers.
Metrics for Success: Highlight subscriber growth, user retention, and original content viewership.
Tips for Product Management Interview Preparation:
Practice Active Listening: During interviews, pay close attention to the interviewer's cues and questions. This will help you tailor your responses to align with the specific focus of the interview.
Stay Up-to-Date: Keep yourself informed about the latest industry trends, technologies, and market dynamics. Being knowledgeable about the current landscape showcases your dedication and commitment to the role.
Be Curious: Ask insightful questions about the company, team, and product. This not only displays your genuine interest but also demonstrates your analytical thinking.
Showcase Problem-Solving: Emphasize how you approach challenges by breaking down complex problems into manageable steps, leveraging data and user insights.
Stay Positive: Even if you face challenging questions, maintain a positive attitude. Interviewers often value candidates who can handle pressure with grace.
Practice, Practice, Practice: Regularly conduct mock interviews with peers, mentors, or interview coaches. This helps you refine your answers and build confidence.
Be Honest About Your Knowledge: If you're unsure about a topic, it's okay to admit it. Interviewers appreciate candidates who are honest and willing to learn.
Maintain Professionalism: Treat everyone you encounter during the interview process with respect and professionalism, from the receptionist to the interviewers.
Stay Confident: Remember that you've prepared thoroughly and have valuable experiences to share. Confidence in your abilities can make a significant difference.
As you gear up for your ISB or MBA interview, remember that preparation is your greatest ally. By understanding the intricacies of product management interview questions, mastering the two-part product question, and utilizing the OBUS framework, you're poised for success. Take advantage of the expertise of GOALisB ISB admission consultants to elevate your interview performance. With dedication, preparation, and the right guidance, you're well on your way to excelling in your interviews and securing your spot in your dream institution. Good luck!