Tips for Landing Your First Product Manager Job in 2023
Product management is an ideal option for someone interested in a career with variety. The role rests at the intersection of technology, design, and business and combines strategy, leadership, marketing, and other skills with the aim of launching amazing products. Since most employers prefer hiring candidates with previous product management experience, getting a job can be challenging.
To narrow your product management job search, decide on the type of product manager you’d like to be, including technical, consumer, internal and B2B product managers.
Landing Your First Product Manager Job
Below are six tips for landing your first product manager job.
Assess and Develop Your Product Skills
When looking for your first product management role, it's vital to examine and develop the required product management skills. Product management employers want candidates with communication skills, data-driven skills, technical abilities, leadership, a user-centric approach, and a strategic mindset.
Consider using a product skills toolkit to assess your skills. Once you know what you're lacking, educate yourself and build your skills by investing in short online product management courses or using other free internet resources such as Google analytics.
While LinkedIn certifications can showcase your dedication to professional development, it's generally recommended not to mention them on your LinkedIn profile as they may not hold the same level of credibility as recognized industry certifications or relevant work experience, potentially diluting the impact of your profile for potential product manager job opportunities.
Apply for An Entry-Level Product Manager Role
Entry-level product management roles like internships, junior product management, and associate product management are ideal positions if you're joining the field, a recent graduate, or in college.
They involve a combination of hands-on training exercises and product management activities, helping you gain real-world work experience that prepares you for career progression. You can find these roles on sites like Glassdoor, Dick’s sporting goods jobs at Lensa, LinkedIn, and others.
Learn how To Write Code
A product manager capable of writing code is a technical product manager. They're scarce and in high demand as they are well-equipped to lead product building developers. Polishing your tech skills is an excellent way to make yourself more marketable.
Attending coding bootcamps and working on your side projects can help you learn to code while becoming a tech expert in your area of interest.
Sharpen Your Analytical Thinking Skills
A product manager is a visionary problem solver. Work issues are inevitable, and you can work around them with the right analytical skills. Understanding what happens in the technical teams can help build these skills.
This means a good product manager should be able to speak and reason with technical expertise and analytically. If you lack the technical background, keep those who do close and ask them questions based on how they analyze issues.
Through research, you can better understand a product, making it easier to progress through the project management career path stages. A good understanding of products, the industry, competitors, target market, and product history can help you handle product management interview queries.
You can also research to learn more about the product manager role by reading blogs, digital books, and watching videos. You can connect with experienced product managers for support and advice during your research.
Learn how To Crack Product Manager Interviews
Reading product manager interview resources helps you learn how to tackle questions, increasing your chances of securing your first job. You can also research and prepare questions involving behavioral, product, and common product manager interview questions.
Getting your first product management role can be challenging. However, these tips can help you land your product manager job.