Thursday, October 22, 2020

Break into product management

When I teach the Intro to Product Management class at General Assembly, my most asked question is how to break into the product management field when you don't have experience. In fact, I see this question so frequently that I decided to summarize my best advice into a blog post. 

I advise people to volunteer to work with the product manager at their company to gain experience. I shadowed my product manager at SAP on a design thinking project interviewing attorneys to understand  their frustrations and pain points.

 If you don’t have a product manager to shadow at your company, go to the meetup and startup community to get some pro bono experience. Given coronavirus, most of these opportunities have moved online. Check out and for groups of interest. I have expanded my network through affinity groups like She Geeks Out and Tech Ladies, as well as Women in Product.

You should also leverage your transferable skills. For instance, are you good at juggling multiple priorities? Have you worked on an agile team? Understand technology? Review your resume to look at the skills you do have and highlight these transferable skills on your product-focused resume.

General Assembly has some great workshops and bootcamps to build your skills in product management, agile, and other topics. Good luck!