How to prepare for a Product Manager interview
A Product Manager in a company or organization deals with new product development pointed at driving growth and product/service diversity.
As a product manager you will handle the product (which will sometimes be the company’s entire brand offering) in all of its lifecycles - from inception to its various stages of growth. The commercial viability of a product becomes a key responsibility for product managers.
Areas of importance in product management include research, strategy, development, operations, communication, marketing and sales, pricing and data analysis. These help the business get in tune with its customers.
A key tool in product management is the formulation of product roadmaps; these are plans which map out the path for different products within a company - whatever is expected for a certain product in terms of the key areas mentioned above will reflect in a product roadmap.
Below are a few interview questions to help in the preparation of your product management interview.
Interview preparation questions:
Here are a few product management interview preparation questions to practice
- Why product management?
- What is a product favorite of yours, and why do you love it?
- What has prepared you for this role in your previous company?
- How would you describe our product to someone who wanted something similar, but cheaper?
- How do you manage a new product launch?
- What is a product that is marketed well?
- What is a product roadmap?
- What would you improve about our product?
- How would you sell our product to your group of friends?
- What is the difference between B2B and B2C product management?
* Tips on answering these questions: align your experience to the attributes listed on the job posting and/or company culture and values
Questions to ask your interviewers:
The type of questions you may want to ask will depend on who is interviewing you, or which round of interviews you are currently in.
- What is your favorite thing about being a product manager at this firm?
- What can I expect in terms of company culture?
- What are some of the unexpected realities of being a product manager ?
- What common characteristics have helped people at this level quickly succeed and reach an outstanding performance?
- I know product management to be very dynamic. What can I expect my day-to-day to look like ?
Interview follow up:
They say small kindnesses never go unnoticed and this is particularly true when it comes to interviewing.
A simple thank you email to your interviewer goes a long way to cementing you in their minds long after your interview is over. Your email could be as simple as thanking the interviewer for their time, or mentioning a particular part of the interview you enjoyed. This would also be a good opportunity to extend your interest in connecting via Linkedin.
Your interviewer will generally set the expectation for when you can expect to hear back from them. If nothing is set, a good timeframe for a follow up is two weeks after the interview.
Checklist for the day of your interview:
- Get a good night’s sleep - This allows your body and mind to recharge, leaving you refreshed and alert when you wake up, ready to ace your interview!
- Start your day with breakfast - You might find you feel a bit sluggish and struggle to focus if you don’t. Breakfast positively affects your mental performance, including your attention, ability to concentrate and memory. Skipping the most important meal of the day can make some tasks feel harder than they normally would.
- Wear clothing you’re comfortable in - The dress code for product manager interviews can vary from business professional to business casual. With this in mind, it’s always better to overdress, rather than underdress. Comfortable clothing will also help you feel confident during your interview.
- Leave your house early - Proper planning will help you arrive on time for the interview and eliminate any last minute stress. Double-check the interview location and your best route to get there. If you’re driving there yourself, it’s a good idea to consider where you might park.
- If you are having an online interview, remember to log on early and test your setup. You should check your connection, camera and microphone, as well as ensuring your background or environment is free from clutter and distractions.
- Follow in Superman’s footsteps - Try this right before you go into the room or join your call. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart, place your hands on your hips and breathe deeply. This is the Superman pose, specifically developed to encourage your body to regulate breathing and allow your mind to clear and your nerves to calm. Plus, you’ll feel like you could leap tall buildings in a single bound - what better way to take your next steps to professional success?
Now that you’ve just taken your next steps towards succeeding in your career, be sure to take a look at the Wizco Blog for more insider tips and tricks and walk into every growth opportunity prepared.