Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Intersection of People Leadership and Product Management

It’s been far too long since I’ve written a post!  Work and lollygagging are getting in the way of my blog and I need to fix that.  I’ve switched into a people leadership position and it is a little bit harder to write about specifics. 

I had drinks with one of my favorite product people, Jason, and we were talking about my current role and what I’m doing. He informed me that I have been product managing people leadership, which I had never really thought about but when I did, realized he was correct.   I’ll probably always be a product manager at heart. 

The things that translate well between people leadership and product management include managing all the expectations of your stakeholders.  My main customers are the people on my team and I need to serve them, but I also need to serve market demands and other stakeholders.  My manager has expectations from my team & me, other departments have different sets of expectations from the team and like all things there is not enough time to get it all done.  Some of my time is used setting the correct expectations with all the stakeholders and keeping them informed on what your doing and why, as well as what your not doing.

As a people leader you are continually getting feedback on how the team & individuals are doing, sharing the successes and getting better (customer interviews & surveys J). It’s also about setting a vision of where you want to be 3 years from now, creating a plan to get there and getting buy-in on that plan.  It’s being agile enough to adapt to the needs of your organization and people as the environment changes.  My title might have changed but I feel many parallels in my current role to my former product manager role.  And of course I use a Trello board to help manage it all!