Questions every product manager should be able to answer

Attended an interesting talk at P-Camp this weekend. The talk was about the essential qualities of a product manager.


As Product managers, we should be able to answer the following questions, and more importantly, make it a point to revisit these questions time and time again, (especially as your product undergoes multiple iterations).

  1. Who is your customer?
  2. Who is NOT your customer? (this is at least as important as #1)
  3. What does your customer want, and why? What does the market of customers want (as against just one customer)? Here, you have to look at patterns in customer requests in order to gauge the market.
  4. Who is your competition?
  5. How should features be prioritized?
  6. What problem are you trying to solve? How would you solve it? (Problem definition and solution)
  7. How does the solution fit with your corporate goals? (the point here is that you have to be aware of your company’s corporate strategy, and to communicate with the executives as to whether or not that strategy is a good one.)
  8. Will the customer pay for your solution? What will the customer pay for?
  9. What do the quiet 80% of your customers think? How many of your customers have not logged into your website in the past 30 days? Which of your customers haven’t called in the past 30 days, and why?
  10. Why are you winning and losing deals?
  11. What is your NPS (Net Promoter Score)? How would you improve it?
  12. How has your product improved the life of your users?
  13. What messages resonate with your customer?
  14. Why are non-customers not even looking? What are your barriers to adoption?

So, what do you think? Is there anything that was missed that you would add to the list?

05. April 2011 by Kunal Punjabi
Categories: Product Management | Leave a comment

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