Irrespective of their size and industry all firms realise the importance of product management. In a competitive market, companies must manage a product throughout its lifecycle. But it is not easy getting an expert in product management, considering that these professionals come from vastly different backgrounds and their roles differ in every company. But that doesn’t mean companies can avoid hiring a capable product manager to handle their products. It is where asking the right product management interview questions can help find the right person.
Importance Of Product Management Interview Questions
Before we look at the actual questions that need to be asked at a product manager interview, it is necessary to know why product management interview questions are important. As every company has different requirements, it must find the right person for the job. The interviewer must know if the person is apt for an interaction that lasts a short time. You can do it only by asking the correct questions and analysing the answers.
To cover every aspect of the interview, the person must make a concerted effort. It is possible only by preparing the questions well in advance. Knowing the probable questions for those attending an interview will help them be prepared with the answers that will reveal their skills and capabilities. The product management interview questions will cover the candidate’s business acumen, market savviness, communication skills, product management capabilities and technical knowledge.
You can know more questions by attending the Advanced Executive Certificate Course in Product Management conducted by reputed institutions. To learn more about the course and its benefits for you, visit our website.
What Are The Questions Based On?
Interviewers usually ask product management interview questions to get specific information from the candidate. These are generally asked on the following topics.
- Questions to know the product management skills possessed by the candidate.
- To test the technical knowledge of the person aspiring to become a product manager.
- Questions that help the interviewer know more about the person.
- Testing the leadership and communications skill of the person.
- Behavioural questions to know how the person will handle different situations.
Top 15 Product Management Interview Questions
- What does a product manager do?
It is a very common question, and most companies ask this question to aspiring product managers. Though the question looks quite straightforward, the answers the person gives will let the interviewer know if the candidate has understood the company’s requirements. We know that different companies have different expectations from their product managers. These are mostly given in the job advertisement. The answer to this product management interview question will reveal whether candidates know what is expected of them. It is best to study the job description well and prepare the answer in advance.
- Why do you want this job? How does it fit your career plans?
It is a question that is very important for the company. Hardly anyone sticks to a job or company for their life nowadays. They are always planning for a long-term goal, and the present job may only be a temporary stopover on the way to their objectives. The answer to this question tells the interviewer whether the person is using the post only as a stepping stone or wants to stay here for long as a path to objectives. One must answer this product management interview question to show that this role is important for their long-term goals.
- How to find out customer needs and wants?
It is the primary information that product managers must possess. Creating a product starts with knowing the customer’s pain points and how one can solve them. There are multiple ways to know customer preferences. They can use surveys to understand what needs a product must satisfy and in what way existing competitors’ products are deficient. It helps create the ideal item to succeed in the market. There are also other ways, like one-on-one interviews and using market data. If you want to show your capabilities, you must give multiple answers to this product management interview question.
Also Read: Steps To Create A Successful Go-To-Market Strategy
- How do you influence those who do not report to you?
The creation of a product needs the support of all departments. A product manager needs many resources like people, money and technology. It means that the person must get the consensus of everyone in the company, including those in higher positions. It is one of the product management interview questions that will reveal how the person will deal with those in superior positions. The ideal answer to this question is that you will use your research results, data visualisation and other tactics to convince all stakeholders that the product can help the company achieve its overall goals.
- How would you react if your product idea didn’t work as expected?
Every product manager must be ready to face failures and accept the fault instead of shifting the blame to the team or other aspects. If you have already worked as a PM and have faced such a situation, it is the best question to show you were able to correct a mistake on the go and still release the product in the market on time. It is one of the product management interview questions that help prospective product managers show how they will analyse the whole process and find out where the mistake happened.
- What is your favourite product, and what would you change?
This is an excellent question for the interviewer to determine if candidates will be critical of their products. It is often found that product managers fall in love with their products and are not able to see minor defects in them that can be changed easily. A good product manager knows that the process is continuous and that constant improvement is needed to stay on top of the market. This question allows candidates to show how they will critically analyse an item, even if it is their favourite one.
- How do you communicate your product strategy?
This is one of the product management interview questions that helps the interviewer to find out what methods the candidate will use to bring consensus about a product idea. It also shows whether the person will try to bring everyone on board or just announce the decision to create the new product. As a candidate, you must explain whether you will use data to back your ideas. It is an opportunity for you to explain the roadmap for the entire product lifecycle. This question can help to show your communication skills which is an essential capability for any product manager.
- What will you do in the first three months after joining the team?
This is a question to know what the person’s priority is. The company can find out if new employees will take the time to study the product fully and understand its features. This question is especially important to know if candidates are coming up with ideas that they want to impose on the product. If someone wants to enforce changes in the product and push for new features, it will show the person as being ego-driven. It is a product management interview question that will help unearth any worrisome behaviour in the job aspirant.
- How will you support sales enablement?
It is not enough for the team to create a product. They must also support sales enablement. Experienced candidates can explain how they will provide support to sales and marketing teams in explaining the product and its features. As a candidate, you must focus on sales support and feedback gathering. It is essential to explain how you will collect customer feedback with support from the sales and marketing teams. A knowledgeable product manager will talk about revenues, client lifetime value, time to revenue, time to convert prospects to customers, etc.
The Advanced Executive Certificate Course in Product Management is an excellent program to learn how a product manager must coordinate with the sales team and help them drive sales of the new product in the market. A visit to our website will tell you more about this course.
- What was your most successful product?
This is one of the most common product management interview questions asked of those who already are in a product management team. This question is specifically asked to understand whether candidates focus on their part in creating an excellent product or they are more focused on explaining how the product solved customer issues and also made profits for the company. The candidate must be able to convert the efforts of creating a great product into business value. This question helps the interviewer understand what values the product manager achieved.
- How do you define market opportunity in a business plan?
Someone who has experience in the field can explain this in different ways. Market opportunity can be represented as the total value available in the market. This means the amount people will spend in total to purchase such a product. Another term used when describing market opportunity is the Compound Annual Growth Rate, which denotes the speed at which the market is growing. When answering this product management interview question, product managers will also be able to specify the portion that is available for their product which is their potential market share.
- What actions were taken when you realised that the product might not be ready for launch in time?
On many occasions, the completion of a product can get delayed. But in such circumstances, a product manager must take some measures to ensure that the product is released on the set deadline. You must explain if you have reduced some functionality of the product to ensure it is released on time. Another method is to re-prioritise their roadmap. Some product managers also go ahead without making an MVP. It is also possible that there was a soft launch to select customers before going ahead with a full launch.
- What is a low-hanging fruit?
This is one of the usual product management interview questions that an experienced person or someone who has undergone a good certificate programme can answer. A low-hanging fruit is an opportunity that can be easily exploited to achieve profits. A market may be in dire need of a solution that will be quickly consumed by the customers. Another situation is when the addition of a feature can drive exponential revenues. This question is often asked to know how quickly the product manager responds to changing situations to earn quick revenue.
- What are the important elements of competitor analysis?
Competitor analysis is very important for a product throughout its lifecycle. An ideal answer to this question will have two parts. The first element is the SWOT analysis that will be used to develop a strong positioning strategy by the sales and engineering teams. This analysis must cover both the business and technical elements of the competitor. The second part is the analysis of the features and finding out where there are gaps in the competitor’s product.
- How should a product have its end?
Taking a product off the market is not a good solution for any company. But sometimes it is more beneficial to do that instead of spending money on it. This is a product management interview question that some may find difficult to answer if they have not experienced such a situation. Teams inside the company and customers must be informed about this and the procedure for ending the product’s life. This activity must be done without damaging the image of the company.
We have seen the most common questions asked in an interview for product managers. However, the list is not exhaustive, and job seekers must be fully prepared to answer any question that may be thrown at them. The Advanced Executive Certificate Course In Product Management is an excellent program to get the answers to all questions. You may visit our website to learn more about this course.
Interviews are an excellent way to decide if a candidate is suitable for the post. Companies should keep the product management interview questions consistent because it will help in comparing candidates. Asking different questions may not help in actually gauging one person against another one. Candidates must be prepared well for the interview because their answers to these questions will decide whether they reach the next step to joining the firm.