PRODUCTHEAD: Remind me, what am I meant to be doing?

PRODUCTHEAD: Remind me, what am I meant to be doing?

PRODUCTHEAD is a regular newsletter of product management goodness,
curated by Jock Busuttil.

i might be a product manager


A product manager works at the intersection between business, technology and user experience

A product manager is not a replacement for absent specialists

The product manager is accountable for ensuring the solution is both valuable and viable

Product managers use their knowledge of user needs and business goals to frame problems and set priorities for their delivery teams


It’s always worthwhile to remind ourselves of what we’re supposed to be doing — and not doing — as product managers.

Too often we get pulled into all sorts of different tasks that distract us from our primary responsibility: to create a product that people need and value, and to do this by collaborating with specialists.

So this week, here are some of the best articles to get you thinking about what being a product manager is all about.

Speak to you soon,


what to think about this week

What, exactly, is a product manager?

I often get asked what a product manager is. What do they do? Where do they come from? Why do they like sharpies so much?

You’ll probably recognise the Venn diagram


What does a product manager do (and not do)?

Compared to when I started out in product management, we’re a lot better at defining the role of a product manager. It’s always worth a reminder. (Video and transcript)

Did anyone explain your role to you before you started?


Product Management Coaching

Whether you’re new to product management or have been a product manager for years, a coaching session can help you to step up your career.

We’ve coached people wanting to get into product management, product people with nobody in their organisation to manage them, and experienced product managers preparing to apply for a promotion.

A proportion of the fees from every coaching session is donated to charity. Just reply to this email if you’re interested in finding out more.

Product manager job description

One of the most common requests I’ve received over the years is to share a good job description for a product manager of an empowered product team.

For a product manager on an empowered team


Guidance: product manager

Find out what a product manager does and the skills you need to do the job.

A helpful guide also for those working outside of government


recent posts

Manage the whole product

A product is often a complex combination of several products and services. Some you create yourself, some are created by others. You’re responsible for the whole lot, even if they’re not all directly in your control.

What do Google, Tesla and Apple have in common with the Michelin Guide?


The only article you’ll ever need on prioritization

When faced with an overwhelming number of things you could be doing, all with good reasons for doing them, it can be tremendously hard to decide which to do, let alone which to do first.

Prioritization is all about deciding this as objectively and transparently as you can.

Break the deadlock


What technical skills do I need to be a product manager?

I am searching for a career change and Product Management/ Project Management are my areas of interest. I was looking to understand, based on your experience, if in such roles technical skills are required?

Read on for my answer


upcoming talks and events

5th May 2021, 16:00 GMT


Online product management round table discussion (topic TBC)


can we help you?

Product People is a product management services company. We can help you through consultancy, training and coaching. Just contact us if you need our help!

Product People Limited logo

Helping people build better products, more successfully, since 2012.

PRODUCTHEAD is a newsletter for product people of all varieties, and is lovingly crafted from high concept cinema tentpoles.

Read more from Jock

The Practitioner's Guide to Product Management book cover

The Practitioner's Guide To Product Management

by Jock Busuttil

“This is a great book for Product Managers or those considering a career in Product Management.”

— Lyndsay Denton

Jock Busuttil is a product management and leadership coach, product leader and author. He has spent over two decades working with technology companies to improve their product management practices, from startups to multinationals. In 2012 Jock founded Product People Limited, which provides product management consultancy, coaching and training. Its clients include BBC, University of Cambridge, Ometria, Prolific and the UK’s Ministry of Justice and Government Digital Service (GDS). Jock holds a master’s degree in Classics from the University of Cambridge. He is the author of the popular book The Practitioner’s Guide To Product Management, which was published in January 2015 by Grand Central Publishing in the US and Piatkus in the UK. He writes the blog I Manage Products and weekly product management newsletter PRODUCTHEAD. You can find him on Mastodon, X (formerly Twitter) and LinkedIn.

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