CHAPTER 1Why an Ultimate Guide to Product Managers?
CHAPTER 2What Is a Product Manager?
CHAPTER 3The 3 Key Responsibilities of Product Managers
CHAPTER 4The Characteristics of a Good Product Manager
CHAPTER 5The Characteristics of a Bad Product Manager
CHAPTER 6A Day and Week in the Life of a Product Manager
CHAPTER 7Tools that Product Managers Rely on
CHAPTER 8The Makeup of a Product Management Team
CHAPTER 9Who Do Product Managers Report to?
CHAPTER 10Who Does a Product Manager Lead?
CHAPTER 11Product Manager vs. Product Owner
CHAPTER 12Product Manager vs. Technical Product Manager
CHAPTER 13Product Manager vs. Product Marketing Manager
CHAPTER 14Product Manager vs. Program Manager
CHAPTER 15How to Become a Product Manager in 2021
CHAPTER 16Are Product Management Courses (Certifications and Degrees) Worth the Time and Investment?
CHAPTER 17Product Manager Salaries and How Resume Breakdown
CHAPTER 18Landing Your First Product Role in 2021
CHAPTER 19Finding Product Management Jobs
CHAPTER 20Owning Your Product Manager Interview
CHAPTER 21Common Product Manager Interview Questions
CHAPTER 22Working as a Product Manager in an Agency
CHAPTER 23Working Freelance as a Product Manager
CHAPTER 245 Key Tips for New Product Managers
CHAPTER 25How to Level up Your Product Skills
The roles and responsibility of a product manager may differ depending on whether they work in a product company vs. an agency.
airfocus is a product company.
The product team at airfocus listens closely to customer requests, prioritizes them, and continuously works to offer enhancements and improvements directly to users and customers to solve their needs.
IDEO however is an agency. Companies hire and rely on them and their staff to assist them with designing and building products to help them reach their business goals.
For example in 1980 Apple hired IDEO to build a mouse for their new computer “Apple Lisa”.
Companies may come to agencies with a defined scope of work (which can include design and/or development) or they may come with a problem that they need the agency’s help solving.
A product manager that works within a product company will receive a chance to practice all steps of the product development process.
From identifying and prioritizing problems all the way through designing and building the solution, to launching it, assessing it post launch, and continuing to improve it based on performance, customer feedback, and business goals.
A product manager that works within an agency however will only obtain limited experience with the steps of the product development process because their role is confined to assisting their clients with strategy, and/or delivery.
They will perform customer and market research for their client along with understanding the company’s goals and objectives to answer their key questions and define what course of action they should take. Thereafter they will work with their development team to build the product and deliver it to their client.
Agencies are usually relied upon to solve a specific problem for a customer. Once the product is built it is handed to the client who is then responsible for managing the product thereafter.
Though some companies will engage with agencies to continue to evolve the product a product manager would most likely move onto their next engagement with another client.
Working within an agency gives product managers a chance to work on many solutions for various companies within various industries, allows product managers to improve their stakeholders management skills (since they work so closely with multiple clients), and improve their delivery skills in the process.
There are pros and cons to working as a product manager in a product company vs. an agency. However the experience gained in both is invaluable.
It is also not difficult for a product manager to transition from one to the other.