AMA: How to Excel as a Product Manager in Extraordinary Times

Yesterday we enjoyed hosting an Ask Me Anything session on Facebook Live with five of our Product Management expert instructors. In this very serious time, we really wanted to be available to answer questions and help the Product Management community adapt and rise to the challenges we’re all facing. This blog post recaps a couple of the key points made during the discussion and provides links to the resources that were mentioned during our conversation.

Watch live recording here:

Major Topics of Conversation

In roughly this order, we covered these topics:

  • Best practices for working from home as a Product Manager, and how to stay engaged with your product team
  • Tips on how to run collaborative activities virtually
  • What to do when product sales have been dropping as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic
  • How to conduct market research, but quantitative and qualitative, to quickly understand how your customer needs are shifting
  • Tips to support Marketing and Sales during this challenging time
  • From what we learn about remote working during this extraordinary time, what techniques we should bring back to the workplace when the pandemic is over
  • What to do if you’re laid off, or if you survive a layoff
  • Tips to get camera-shy co-workers to participate in video chat conversations
  • Whether you should be updating your product roadmap more frequently, and how to do this strategically
  • Suggested data and information resources to take advantage of now
  • How to best take advantage of this extraordinary time to actually improve your own skills, your relationships, and help your company adapt to today’s market situation

Resources

  • If you’re looking for some mind mapping collaboration tools, check out this article that reviews 24 different tools, several of which allow for multiple people to participate together online.
  • During our roadmap and strategy conversation, we mentioned the article from McKinsey that provides solid tips on how to think through major strategic shifts in times of uncertainty. You can read the article Strategy under uncertainty.
  • We also discussed using Whole Product thinking to consider how you can react quickly to your customers’ rapidly changing needs in times like these. Our blog post on this concept can get you started, but Roger Snyder also talked about this concept in more depth on a podcast by The Product Coach, which you can listen to here.
  • In our earlier blog post, we collected some resources on how to be more effective and feel less isolated when you and your whole team are working from home for an extended period of time. Scroll down to the Resources section of the post for these links.

Once again, I’d like to thank John Haniotis, Susannah Axelrod, Tom Evans, and Pamela Schure for joining me in this great live conversation. If you enjoyed this conversation, please join our Facebook group, and like or share the conversation recording.

Have More Questions?

We continued this conversation in our webinar, How Product Managers Excel in a Time of Crisis. We began with additional tips and resources on some of the topics we covered in the AMA, then covered a few more new topics based on new questions. Watch this on-demand if you missed the live recording.

Watch Webinar On-Demand

WATCH NOW

You or your team are now working remotely—let‘s discuss the challenges you are facing in coordinating product efforts. What challenges are your products and services facing now?

In this webinar, we’ll discuss how your fundamental skills as a Product Manager can serve you well in this time of crisis.

About the Author

Roger Snyder - VP of Marketing
Roger Snyder is a Principal Consultant/Trainer, and VP of Marketing at 280 Group.
Roger has worked in the field of Product Management for over 20 years, with experience in startups, growth companies, and various technology sectors. He specializes in improving product strategy development, implementing full product lifecycle processes, and roadmap development and evolution.
280 Group is the world’s leading Product Management training and consulting firm. We help companies and individuals do GREAT Product Management and Product Marketing using our Optimal Product Process™.

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