My PM Journey

To begin with, why do I want to become a product manager?

I have been a product manager throughout my life. I just did not know the term. Whatever projects I have worked on, my contribution went beyond a developer. I like to ask questions and find answers with a solid backing of fact and intuition. I love solving problems in a systematic way. During my tenure in Appointdoctor, my prime focus was to help people find and book appointments in the least possible time. In 3.5 years Appointdoctor started managing over 600 appointments per day in Agartala. On we used to publish multiple articles every week. However, not every post can be visible on the home page. So we worked on our search visibility. We improved the keywords and started monitoring the performance. Today, the website is getting over fifteen thousand hits per month. Plus, we designed an advanced search tool to filter from various subjects.

My point is, that I am a curious person with a craving for drawing plans. I want to organize the repetitive or over-complicated tasks that people spend time. I have the composure required to get things done. And the designation is called Product Manager.

Stage 1: Getting into Product management

Challenge 1: lack of experience on-paper

Explaining the problem:
  1. I have worked for 8 years with a developer designation. So, most of the keywords around my projects are from development only.
  2. Though my role goes beyond the traditional developer or team lead, the keywords were around the development domain only.
  3. My designation doesn’t capture my exposure or understanding of User experience or customer empathy.
My Approach:

Following are the solutions that I have come up with

  1. Update my resume to capture the works I did and my role as a product manager.
  2. Use keywords to help organizations/ HRs discover me from the pool of PMs or aspiring PMs.
  3. Take courses and certifications to understand the nuances of the Product Manager role.
  4. Start a blog, write about the projects that I have worked on and as well as things that I love to do. This will improve my writing and storytelling skills and can also help writing a detailed PRD. I started writing travel blogs as well.
  5. Grow LinkedIn network, and connect with fellow Product Managers.
  6. Write case studies about some products that you can connect with or use personally.
  7. Create a side hustle. This is still under process. I am trying to find
    1. Something unorganized, that I can organize and help people save time.
    2. Or automate a repetitive process and help people save time
    3. Or something that is very important yet people find it uninteresting and ignore it.

Challenge 2: Cannot sell me

Explaining the problem:
  1. I am not a gifted storyteller. Especially the first 2 minutes of the interview I am jittery.
  2. I have got rejected mostly by the first round of interviews. My best guess is I might not be using the right keywords that the interviewer was expecting.
My Approach:
  1. Show clarity in my thought process.
  2. The first rule of storytelling is to believe in the story. The belief transfers from your story to your audience.
  3. Figure out keywords that the interviewers are looking for.
  4. Find a mentor and have some mock interviews to find out the mistakes I am making repetitively.
  5. Keep calm.

Challenge 3: Finding a mentor is difficult

Explaining the problem:
  1. Finding a mentor is really tough. On LinkedIn, there are many influencers who post regularly on the PM role and how to break in. However, I find they lack structure.
  2. They are not designed to fit your need. More or less, they will have some prerecorded sessions on the same topics.
My Approach
  1. I have decided to go with the interview course from PM Diego. He is a genuine product manager with a lot of good content on LinkedIn as well as website.
  2. He talks about interview preparation, which is something I need to improve.