Saturday, March 2, 2024

Product Manager Questions To Ask Interviewer

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Can You Describe A Scenario When You Had To Prioritize Tasks

The Top 10 Product Manager Interview Questions (And How To Answer Them)

Product managers will have many spinning plates in the air and have to be able to manage all of them simultaneously to get the job done.

Since you cant really test them out for fear of watching all those plates come crashing down, your best bet is to hear a story from them about how they managed many different responsibilities successfully.

Keep in mind, the story doesnt have to relate 1:1 to product management. Effectively juggling tasks in other contexts will do. Prioritization is a transferable skill.

What Does A Product Manager Do

Come in hot out of the gate and get them to share their understanding of the role. Since there is so much variety from one organization to the next, many people have different expectations for a product manager. This question helps ensure theyre applying for a job they want and wont be overwhelmed/frustrated/disappointed when they start working in your available position.

Whats Your Biggest Failure As A Product Manager And Why Did It Happen

This question has two benefits. First, it gets them to look back and provide critical thinking about why something went awry, which is helpful in a post-mortem situation. But what they select as their failure also tells you a little about them and how broad and developed their sense of ownership is.

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Carry Out A Product Deep Dive

As any Product Manager knows, the best way to learn about a product is to use it. Using the companys product intensively is a great way to generate relevant questions because you not only put yourself in the customers shoes, you also get a greater understanding of it as a PM

Find potential or current users to interview if you cant use the product yourself. Whatever you do, endeavor to gain a greater understanding from a users standpoint.

Questions To Ask About Company Culture

Product Manager Second

Company culture can be the make or break of your time as a Product Manager at the company, so its important to get a good feel of it. Is the office a more start-up culture kind of place, or the more traditional buttoned-up conservative environment?

Find out about this with questions such as:

  • How would you describe the work environment at your company?
  • Do people work collaboratively or independently?
  • Whats the last team event that took place?
  • Do you run any sort of team-bonding activities?
  • Do you have any office traditions and what are your favorite?
  • Do people typically hang out outside of work hours?
  • Whats different about working here than anywhere else?

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What Makes A Great Product Manager What Specific Qualities Do You Think Make For A Successful Pm

This question helps determine whether or not the candidate has taken time to reflect on what separates good from bad product managers. A strong application would include examples that illustrate when he or she felt like they were effective as a Product Manager in terms of meeting company objectives, creating opportunities for team members to grow within the organization, etc.

One major factor may be communication skills- being able to clearly articulate goals and then keep stakeholders informed along the way.

How Do You Communicate A Product Development Strategy

A product development strategy discusses market demand, business situation, competitors, technological capabilities, domain, and design expertise

An effective product development conveys:

Emerging market and technologies that can accommodate customers.How it plans to meet business goals and generate revenuesEconomic factors that affect the customers budgetEvolving customer behavior.

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Tactic #: Model The Business And User Engagement

Build a model to explain how the product makes money and how users engage with the product.

This process forces you to do two key things: 1) understand the key levers in the product and business and 2) make assumptions about pieces of info you dont know. For more on the process, here is a sample model our CEO put together in 2014 for a role at delivery company Postmates.

Inevitably, building a model will reveal gaps in your understanding: those gaps are great question material!

What Is Your Understanding Of The Relationship Between Product Managers And Engineers

How to answer Strategy Questions (Product Management Interview)

A product manager takes care of end to end execution of products, from ideation to execution. Engineers and technical teams build products.

Engineering teams provide Product Requirements Document and test plans for the product to be built.

The product manager carries out market research to identify the audience, competitors and economic challenges.

Engineers set an architectural vision, technical strategy and define development methodology for the organization.

The product manager leads the product from concept to reality and is responsible for the constant fixing and development of the product.

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Example Question: How Would You Explain How Apis Work To Your Grandparents

A great way to answer a question like this is with an analogy: If I had to explain how APIs work to my grandparents, Id use a wedding analogy. For example, the couple requests a certain type of food that falls within a budget. It will be the job of the wedding planner to look for and communicate with various caterers and hire the one that is willing to cater the food at the right price. In this scenario, the event organizer acts as an API and performs multiple tasks like communicating with multiple entities, obtaining the needed data, and getting the job done.

Here are some other technical know-how questions you can ask:

  • How would you explain Google Cloud to your uncle?
  • What technologies would you use to build a live stream video service?
  • How would you store large images in a database?
  • How would you write a program to randomly shuffle an array of numbers?
  • How would you take in an unsorted array with duplicates and return it with no duplicates?
  • Note that this question is more geared towards a technical product manager role.

How Would You Describe Our Product To Someone Who Wanted Something Similar Only $20 Cheaper

This question checks that the candidate has researched your products and knows enough to speak about them with familiarity. It also gives you real-time insight into the candidates communication and prioritization skills. What to look for in an answer:

  • User testimonials
  • Cost-benefit overview


For only $20 more, you get at least $100 more worth of features with this product. For example, it syncs to your smartphone, computer and other devices to save you a lot of time and hassle. Our users also say that they love the ability to control it when theyre at home or on vacation. Also, they rarely have to contact customer support for help with an issue.

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What To Do Once Your Nail Your Product Manager Interview

Now that we’ve gone over all of the most commonly asked product manager interview questions and answers, it’s up to you to practice and batten down for your product manager interview. Remember not to overthink and that everyone makes mistakes. So, relax, be natural, and you should ace your interview like a pro!

You should check out the vast library of handy articles on , which can help you with numerous tasks, including:

Questions To Ask About The Team

Template: Product Manager Interview Questions

Fitting into your team is crucial as a Product Manager. These are the people you will be supervising and taking supervision from, brainstorming with, striving to meet goals with, and so much more. Whatever information you can uncover from questions to ask during the Product Manager interview process can help you decide whether you want to work with them.

Learn more about your prospective team by asking:

  • How large is the product department?
  • Is this a new position?
  • How large is my working team?
  • Who will I report to and who will I work with most closely?
  • Do you expect to hire more people for the team?
  • Which other departments will I be working with?

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What Action Have You Taken In The Last Year To Improve Your Production Management Knowledge

This question will give you insights into the candidate’s attitude towardss personal development. You want a progressive manager who is likely to add value to their management style continuously. What to look for in an answer:

  • Enthusiasm in personal development
  • Evidence of recent act of knowledge enhancement


“I enroled in post-graduate diploma last year which I hope to complete late mid next year. I also participate in online weekly seminars where we discuss management challenges and technological advancement. I am also a columnist in a daily paper where I discuss my experiences in production management and receive feedback that assists me to improve.”

How To Answer Product Manager Interview Questions

Alright, we know that youre here for example product manager interview questions and answers, and we promise were getting to that. But thats really not the best place to start, anyway. Instead, lets talk about strategy.

Having a solid interview strategy makes a difference. It gives you a process to fall back on, making it easier to answer even an unexpected question.

Lets face facts theres always a chance a hiring manager will catch you off guard. In fact, some try to do it on purpose, asking outlandish questions that no one in their right mind would ever predict.

So, how do you develop that winning approach? By embracing proper research and technique.

Research lets you learn details that can help you stand out. While the hiring manager is probably going to ask you open interview questions, they are actually trying to find out if you have skill X or trait Y. They arent just going to ask you that directly because yes and no questions arent effective for getting to know what candidates genuinely bring to the table.

Start by reviewing the product manager job description.

If you keep seeing the same skills or traits repeated throughout the posting, those are obviously important to the company. They are there for a reason after all. You need to show the hiring manager in your interview that you possess these skills!

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Discuss The Major Changes You Will Make To The Product In Order To Maximize Functionality And Efficiency Describe How Long It Will Take To Implement These Changes

This question is similar to some of the questions seen in the product management section of this product manager interview questions and answers.

Recruiters understand that the most direct way to find out what a candidate thinks of their product as well as how best they believe it they can improve it.

When answering this question, candidates need to keep in mind two keywords. The first is functionality, which has to do with how product usability. The second is efficiency, which has to do with how well the product serves its purpose.

Candidates should make product suggestions that are related to functionality and efficiency. In doing so, you should branch off into product upgrades that improve customer retention and user engagement. In the case of functionality, you ought to highlight speed while highlighting cost-of-operation in the case of efficiency.

In doing so, candidates should be able to provide a general idea of how long it would take for these changes to be put in place.

Here are some additional product design questions that you may face in a product manager interview.

Product Manager Process Questions

  • Explain to me when you know that a product design is complete.
  • Talk me through a time when you had to cut a feature that would make your product more usable. Describe how you prioritize this as well as how you convey this to your design team.
  • Discuss how you eliminate possible product features during the ideation process.
  • Define great product design.
  • What Was Your Process For Gathering Feedback From Users

    Top 20 Google Product Manager Interview Questions and How To Answer Them

    This is a question that will help the interviewer determine whether or not they know how to go about this task. For example, if he/she says I just ask them , then its safe to say that person probably doesnt have much experience with product development and should be avoided for hiring purposes).

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    Which Drives More Product Decisions Here: Qualitative Or Quantitative Data

    Who to Ask: Primarily product, but getting the opinion from designers and developers to compare is interesting too.

    What Youll Learn: How good the business is at user research and data analytics. Whose job is it considered ?

    The perfect answer in a perfect world is:

    We use both! We have analytics tracking how people use our product, and folks here who can help you with that data. We also do ongoing user research on our existing apps and often test things before launching them.

    In my experience, companies use only one or neither. Thats not the end of the world , but find out why and what the product and design teams think is important. Are they invested in improving? Will you get the support you need?

    What Aspects Of Product Management Do You Find The Most And Least Exciting

    The most exciting thing about being a product manager is that I get to build products from ideas and impact a large number of people.

    The least exciting thing for me would be when innovation is on a standstill and I have to work in maintenance mode only as that would limit development and innovation.

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    What Is Your Biggest Professional Failure And How Did You Deal With It

    Everyone makes mistakes its what we all have in common as humans. Your product manager candidate is no exception. Its how they deal with the mistake that counts.

    The candidates answer to this question will tell you:

    • How they deal with failure. Do they shirk responsibility? Or do they own up to their mistakes and learn from them?
    • How honest they are, both with themselves and others. Do they focus on something small and talk about how no one even noticed? Or do they pick something bigger and talk about lessons?

    Look for a candidate to talk about a time they failed. The ideal answer will include how they dealt with the situation and how they grew as a result of the failure.

    Key Questions To Ask In A Product Management Interview

    Product marketing manager interview questions

    You are usually wondering about a certain kind of Product Management interview questions: the ones they will ask you. And yet, it is important to keep in mind the sort of inquiries you could make about a future position. Mostly, because a job interview is stressful enough. It is lready quite difficult to focus on your answers and try to provide an accurate but also positive portrayal of your achievements.

    But you must try. And we are here to help.

    In this post, we will first look at why: what are the reasons that justify spending time thinking about PM interview questions? Then, we will look at thehow: when should you be raising your concerns? Finally, we will explain the : which questions are the ones to focus on during a Product Management interview?

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    Whats Something That Youre Obsessed With

    Good product managers are a little obsessive. After, product management is innately a detail-oriented discipline. Theyre curious, passionate, and care deeply about their product.

    The candidates answer to this question will tell you:

    • How passionate they are. Do they get carried away talking about something they love?
    • How well-rounded they are. Do they pick something outside of their profession?

    Look for a candidate whose passion and excitement you can just feel. Imagine if they applied that passion to your product!

    Strategies & Examples For Strategic Thinking Questions

    Strategic thinking questions deal with the why, how, and what of a product. They are open-ended and have no right or wrong answer.

    Questions such as, What should company X do next? Why should company X acquire company Y and Should company X enter a new market? all qualify as strategic questions.

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    Q How Do You Track The Performance Of The Product

    There are different methods of tracking the performance of a product. However, these four techniques are widely used by product managers.

    • Product usage
    • Product development
    • Business performance

    This question is commonly asked in product manager interviews to gauge the technical capabilities of aspirants. In addition, there are other questions regularly asked to understand the technical skills possessed by the aspirant. Below, we list some of the commonly asked interview questions to test the technical skills of a product manager.

    Why Be Ready To Ask Questions At A Product Management Interview

    15 Common Technical Product Manager Interview Questions

    Obviously, you should be ready for anything at a Product Management interview. Questionnaires, challenging questions, group scenarios But time is finite and you can only work so much on each exercise. It is important to justify your time: you will be extremely busy memorizing your resume and absorbing as much as possible from the company website.

    These are the reasons why asking questions at a Product Management interview makes sense:

  • You show respect for your interviewer. This is a very basic point. If your questions are relevant, you are showing that you listened and cared enough about your conversation to seek to learn more from your recruiter.
  • You can highlight what is important for you. From a strategic point of view, your questions reveal as much as your answers. They frame those elements you care about and are hopefully sought by your future company.
  • It gives you a chance to discuss something you forgot. It is possible that you missed a couple of really good points that you were meant to say during the interview. Not to worry: asking questions gives you a chance to resurface a theme you feel particularly strong about.
  • It helps you focus. Thinking about what you are going to ask will help you pay attention to the exchange with the interviewer rather than remaining a passive listener.
  • It fits your future role. Product Managers are supposed to be good at asking the right questions. This is what guides Product Discovery and Development.
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