Friday, November 18, 2022

What Questions To Ask A Product Manager In An Interview

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Can You Explain The Impact Of Gdpr On Todays Products And Services

PRODUCT MANAGER Interview Questions & Answers! (Interview TIPS, Strategies Sample ANSWERS!)

One of the most stringent regulations , the General Data Protection Regulation provides very stringent rules for how data related to personally identifiable information must be handled for any client in the European Union. Fines for non-conformance are potentially in the tens of millions of dollars.

A professional product manager will have a concrete understanding of what comprises PII data, along with the key concerns for management of the data. Of key importance is to listen for the collection process for data, what comprises PII data and the right to be forgotten. This last element implies that all records must be purged from any active or inactive archive and can have complex implications on historical analytics and machine learning solutions.

Furthermore, the product manager should be aware that if they are not compliant, they cannot operate, market, or advertise in the EU without potentially being in violation of the GDPR. In an internet commerce where apps can be downloaded from anywhere, explore their understanding of the risks.

Most Companies Fail At Hiring Managers

Unfortunately, hiring talented managers is not easy. Most companies get it wrong and choose unqualified people for their managerial positions.

In fact, Gallup’s research has found that companies fail to choose the candidate with the right talent for the job 82% of the time when it comes to hiring managers!

This is an alarming problem for employee engagement and the development of high-performing cultures in the U.S. and worldwide.

The cause of this problem seems to be the fact that most companies promote employees into managerial positions because they seemingly deserve it, rather than have the talent for it.

When Gallup asked U.S. managers why they believed they were hired for their current role, they commonly cited their success in a previous non-managerial role or their tenure in their company or field.

Unfortunately, this practice doesn’t work. If they want to be successful, companies need to hire candidates who have the right skills to excel in managerial positions.

So the question is: What makes a great manager?

General / Personal / Basic Questions

PM interviews are still just regular job interviews at heart, and sometimes the simplest questions are the most important. So dont neglect to prepare your answers for the more run-of-the-mill questions.

  • Why should we hire you?
  • What do you do in your spare time?
  • Where do you see yourself in five years?
  • What is the most difficult decision youve ever had to make?
  • What do you need from your manager to be successful?
  • How do you say no to people?
  • What is one of the best ideas youve ever had?
  • What is one of the worst ideas youve ever had?

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What Is The Hardest Thing You Have Experienced As A Product Manager

Product Managers face a lot of difficult situations and people during their entire careers. And no matter what the situation, they have to bring positive outcomes out of it.

Syncing multiple tasks across various products require immense focus and time management. There are several issues that you might face while achieving all of this.

It could be a communication gap, scope creeps due to the stakeholders ambiguity of requirements, unclear goals, budgeting issues, lack of skilled team members, unrealistic deadlines, risk management issues, etc. All these problems are equally damaging to a products growth. Pick up any such issues that you struggle with most. Not only talk about why you find it difficult to use but also how you tackle them so that it doesnt impact the project.

How Do You Monitor Performance And Success

Product marketing manager interview questions
  • Retention, attrition, churn, customer lifetime value: Track the movement or flow of customers
  • Customer counts: Current customer base
  • Velocity, time to revenue, onboarding times: Looking to accelerate revenue recognition and customer adoption
  • Understanding the cost basis on which to calculate profitability
  • Net promoter score or customer satisfaction : Subjective analysis of customer feedback
  • Number of users per feature or transaction volumes: Can track feature importance for prioritizing sprints, and can highlight value for marketing or competitive positioning
  • Time to execute: Records of time that functions take to perform, possibly indicating infrastructure or complex calculations which will result in customer complaints for poor performance
  • On-time delivery: Managing the roadmap and creating credibilitythe integrity of the team will depend on delivering as expected, on-time
  • Team velocity: Monitoring team performance against sprint calculations using story points
  • Resource availability: Monitoring critical resource availability and planning appropriately for coverage
  • Support tickets and escalations: Monitoring the quality of the released product
  • Testing or QA: Monitoring the quality of the code going into test

As a follow up, ask them what they did when they found a KPI that was not moving in the right direction. Listen for an action plan that would include common sense root cause analysis, and some creative thinking to solve for an unexpected KPI.

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What To Interview Product Managers For

In Who, Geoff Smart and Randy Street offer an approach that starts by articulating a positions mission, outcomes, and competencies. Ive articulated XO Groups key Product Manager competencies in this article defining the modern strategic Product Manager. For each Product Manager level at XO Group, we evaluate

  • Strategic Thinking, including macro and micro level design making and problem structuring
  • Technicals, including engineering and design collaboration tools
  • Collaboration, including EQ and conflict management
  • Communication, including the ability to inspire others
  • DetailOrientation, including QA
  • User Science & Empathy, including qualitative and quantitative user research

I asked several other Product Leaders for their top interview questions and key competencies. In addition to the six skill areas above, several also called out:

In addition to competencies, I also evaluate if the candidate would be motivated by the positions mission, users, team, structure, and growth opportunity. Not just *can* the candidate do the job, but *will* the candidate be excited waking up every day to do the job? These two separate notions are also known as will and skill.

Will: does the person have the will to do the job, i.e. is the person motivated and excited? Does this position feed the persons soul?

Ask These Questions When Looking For The Right Person To Take On The Essential Role Of Managing Your Business’s Products

  • Your product manager is in charge of the development of your company’s products.
  • Preparing certain interview questions can help you find the best person for the role.
  • Some questions you can ask prospective product managers are how they define a successful product and how they gather information to make their decisions.

Product managers have a distinctly important role in a company. As Ben Horowitz puts it, they are the “CEOs of product,” and in most cases, product is what you’re selling without something to sell, your business is not a business.

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+ Product Manager Interview Questions And Answers

  • Popular Product Manager Blogs
  • Product market has evolved to provide solutions on both personal and professional fronts and enhance the quality of life.

    The ever-increasing need for innovation and technology has impacted organizations and focused them towards developing unique products that stand out, leading to a high demand for product managers.

    Intellect, ability to adapt, strategy and knowledge of tech and product is all you need to become a product manager.

    But cracking product manager interviews can be tricky.

    Here are 34 Product manager interview questions to prepare you for your next interview.

    How Do You Know When To Cut Corners To Get A Product Out The Door

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

    I would cut corners and launch a product if:

    The product has been long overdue and the team has spent more than the estimated time.The prototype is ready to be launched and I need market feedback for further product development.The product is situation centric and would reap lesser results if launched at a later stage.

    However, I would ensure that the product is ready to perform and meet customer expectations before giving a go-ahead on product launch so that the company reputation is not affected.

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    As A Product Manager How Would You Enable Effective Communication With The Engineering Team

    As a product manager, I would make sure that I put across the vision of the product clearly along with a detailed market scenario and limitations.

    For effective communication, I would:

  • Make data-driven decisions to avoid disagreement on the product.
  • Communicate challenges at hand and let the engineering team do the problem-solving.
  • Ensure clear and frequent communication with the engineering team
  • Help in resolving product-related issues to make it easier for the engineering team.
  • List Of Product Manager Interview Questions From Top Companies

    Examples of Product Manager interview questions that some of the top tech companies ask candidates include:

    • Pick a product that you used this morning and tell me why you like it.
    • Pick a product you hate and tell me how you would improve it.
    • Which tech trend are you following at the moment?
    • What is your take on leadership?
    • Tell me about a time you had a difficult problem to solve.
    • Tell me about an unpopular decision you made on the job.
    • Tell me about your greatest innovation.
    • What is something that you learned from a failure?
    • How would you improve X product?
    • How would you design X product for Y people?
    • Tell me about a competitive move by a company in the past six months and what you think about it.
    • Explain the concept of protocol to a four-year-old child using an ice cream store as an analogy.
    • Describe a typical page load time distribution on desktop. What about on mobile?
    • Pick an app or product. How would you improve it?
    • Take any production chain. How would you optimize the production process?
    • How would you motivate users to use an app every single day for a month?


    get started

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    Prepare By Using These Questions And Nail The Interview

    Ive been through a ton of product management interviews recently to find my next opportunity. They are a gauntlet of uncomfortable questions that dredge the depths of your soul not always fun. Its never the same question twice, but many of them seek the same answer in different ways.

    Right after an interview, I would write down all the questions they asked and analyze them and my answers so I could improve on my performance for the next round or failing that, the next company.

    Heres 17 of the most common questions I got, why the interviewers asked them, and how best to answer them.

    As A Product Manager How Do You Juggle Between B2b And B2c Market Segments

    Top 10 technical product manager interview questions and ...

    The fundamentals of product development are the same in both markets.

    Any product with multiple value propositions must define the business model and benefit the customers through effective problem-solving.

    The difference is that B2B products focus on enabling simple and profitable business activities for stakeholders.

    B2C products, on the other hand, provide a good user experience to the target audience.

    Given that both market segments work on similar aspects but have different objectives, I would build different roadmaps and strategies to juggle between B2B and B2C markets

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    List Of Product Manager Interview Questions: Personal Questions

    During the interview, employers are assessing how well a candidate would fit in with their company. The purpose behind these personal questions is for an employer to get to know a candidate better and learn about their work habits, passions, and interests.

    This question type is an opportunity to show your passion for the company youre applying for while also giving some insight into who you are as a person and why youve chosen the PM career path.

    Personal questions that interviewers may ask a Product Manager include:

    Segment : User Stories And Product Backlog

    User stories and product backlogs are both crucial parts of product and software development. These following questions are meant to give candidates the chance to demonstrate their experience with these aspects of product development.

    15. What should a good user story look like?

    This question is meant to check the candidate’s knowledge of a user story’s structure.

    The product owner is the face of the customer. They are the ones who understand the customer or client best. They must know what a product needs to be successful. That gives them the power to control the release of user stories because they see the result of it.

    16. How do you go about backlog prioritization?

    Backlog prioritization is essential to make sure the right features make it into the final product, and of course, to avoid technical debt. This question will show whether the candidate is capable of effectively prioritizing changes to existing product features, to new features launch, and bug fixes.

    The best outcome will be if the candidate mentions the MoSCow method. However, if someone mentions and explains Stack Ranking, that would be a good indicator of success too.

    17. What would you do if youre unable to control the product backlog?

    A product owner should have absolute control over the product backlog items. Its their job to make sure that the backlog is healthy and updated. Therefore, recruiters should expect a product owner to have confidence when it comes to the product backlog.

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    How Do You Decide What And What Not To Build

    I follow a 5-step process to understand what needs to be built:

  • Identification of market trends and demand for the product, available resources and if it is feasible.
  • Brainstorming with the team to plan out product design, development, and process of execution.
  • Measuring scalability to figure out the availability and quantity of resources for product development.
  • Preparation for the execution by collecting resources and resolving challenges
  • Execution to bring the plan to action.
  • When Was The Last Time You Changed Your Mind About Something Important What Made You Change Your Mind

    6 Best Questions to Ask During a Product Manager Interview

    This question is important to me because I want to know whether or not the candidate is open-minded. Why does open-mindedness matter? As a PM, you need to find the right answer to have an impact on your customers and your business.

    Naturally, because you’re rewarded for finding the right answer, you can fall into the trap of wanting to be right .

    But the problem with tying your identity to being right all of the time is that it can keep you from discovering the truth. Instead, you need to be willing to change your mind in the face of new information and to let the best ideas rise to the top .

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    In The Context Of Product Management How Would You Describe Low

    In the context of product management, low-hanging fruit often refers to a quick win. This might refer to a target market that is in dire need of a solution, or may be a feature/functionality add on that will drive exponential revenues. Explore how a product management candidate might be attuned to market changes that would suddenly create an opportunity for dramatic changes in results.

    The 80/20 rule applies heregaining 80% of the value with 20% of the effort. Or, from another perspective, addressing 80% of the market and treating outliers as exceptions.

    What To Expect From A Product Manager Job Interview Process

    Most product manager job interviews are at least two weeks long. Most companies organize their interview process in five stages:

    • Phone screen
    • On-site interviews
    • Job offer

    The phone screens purpose is to filter the candidates to select who has the minimum product management requirements to perform the job. These short interviews are held by human resources team members. This person will ask general questions about your background and your expectations for the job.

    If you seem to be the right fit, you will go through a video interview — likely with your potential manager on the job. At this stage, the interviewer will look for more job-specific knowledge besides general background questions.

    The next phase of the interview process tends to be an assignment. The intent of this assignment is to evaluate your ability to materialize requests and deliver high-quality projects within a deadline.

    If your assignment meets the standards that the team is looking for, you get the chance to spend a few hours at the companys office to be interviewed by a few people. This phase is the most decisive part of the process. During these interviews, you will be asked every sort of question — from basic background questions to complex technical questions.

    And guess what? The more prepared you are, the better your chances to demonstrate confidence in your answers.

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    Can You Teach Me Something In 5 Minutes

    Teaching is hard. It requires a deep understanding of the subject matter, strong communication skills, and empathy. And pulling it off in 5 minutes? Even harder.

    The product manager candidates answer to this question will tell you:

    • How realistic they are. Do they try to teach you something complicated that they dont fully understand? Or do they focus on something simple and go through it thoroughly?
    • How well they communicate. Is your product manager candidate able to explain the topic in a way that makes sense to you? Do they build on knowledge you both share?

    Look for both content and execution on this interview question. They should pick a topic they are well-versed in and use creative teaching methods to get the point across.

    How Do You Handle Underperforming Team Members

    10 interview questions to ask every manager candidate ...

    If a team is struggling, it is the project manager’s responsibility to help. This question is an opportunity to demonstrate your management and leadership skills. You can show how you are committed to the success of your team.

    Example:There was a time when my integration developer was having a hard time extracting data from a client website. I tried to give him time to work on a solution, but eventually, we started missing deadlines. I scheduled a meeting with him so we could discuss what was going on. Since I am not an expert developer, I had one of our senior integration developers join us. Instead of doing the part herself, the senior member helped my developer work out a plan to extract the data so he could learn the process. He ended up completing the task the next day and never had issues with it again.

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