A product manager solves the problem that your customer is facing with your product. The customer is satisfied, and your company’s revenues go up. From conception to feedback from the customer after the launch, the entire process is monitored by the product manager!
Not only is your product manager the interface between your production team and the customer, but they also resolve problems between departments as they are excellent negotiators too! Given the importance of the product manager, you must ensure you get someone with a recognized product management certification for your firm.
While certification is essential, it is crucial to verify the educational background and experience of the candidate by asking the right interview questions. If you want to know what these questions are, read on.
Top 10 Interview Questions for a Product Manager
Since product managers are responsible for the success of your products, you should be able to assess their quality through these product manager interview questions:
Explain The Role of a Product Manager
Job descriptions vary from company to company since each organization has its structure. This question will help you determine whether the candidate’s role as a product manager in his previous job matches your definition of the role of a product manager.
You will be able to assess whether this candidate can meet your expectations or not. If your views are different and the experience does not meet your requirements, you don’t need to go to the next question.
What Attributes Should a Well-Designed Product Have?
You are not trying to check whether your opinions match. The organization’s priorities influence a product manager’s thought process. What you are trying to understand is if the candidate follows the various aspects of product management at the executive level, development stage, and marketing stage.
The candidate should have clarity regarding budgets, staff, targets, roadmaps, market information, personas, user stories, field input, market feedback, and product positioning. You should assess whether the applicant is thinking logically or not. The answers should contain terms like saving resources, user-friendly layout, or intuitive design.
Tell Us About Any Suggestions to Improve Our Products
There are two critical benefits of asking this question. Firstly, to know if your candidate has done their homework. A true professional will do the spadework and get all the relevant facts about all the products you make.
Secondly, you will be able to assess the analytical skills of the candidate and their ability to provide honest criticism. They should know the details of your product. Most importantly, they should be able to suggest what improvements you could make in your product.
What are Your Methods For Identifying Customer Needs?
A successful product manager is defined by their ability to identify the needs of the customer correctly. If you want a successful product, the product manager should know how to go about research and also what the ground reality is.
The candidate should know the different methods of connecting with customers, like going through a Gemba walk to understand what problem the customer wants to solve. If you are not satisfied with the answer, don’t go ahead.
Explain How You Would Handle a Difference of Opinion With Your Team Members
Product managers have to deal with teams from different departments, and differences of opinion are bound to arise that need to be resolved. If the issue is not addressed, the project comes to a standstill. The company misses the deadline and loses a client.
The candidate’s answer will help you decide whether the candidate has the skills to handle such critical situations or not.
What’s the Biggest Setback You Have Faced as a Product Manager?
There is nothing wrong with making mistakes while working, and everyone goes through this. What is essential is the takeaways from this mistake and ensuring that it is not repeated in the future.
It takes character to admit your flaws. You will be able to assess the candidate’s honesty about their victories and setbacks. If you find that the candidate never owns up to their faults, they shouldn’t be part of your organization.
How Would You Market Our Product When a Cheaper Alternative Exists
By asking the candidate to deal with a real-life scenario, you test their actual sales and marketing ability. This would be a challenge for the candidate.
For best results, ask the candidate to share a real-life example where they had to market their product where a cheaper product of a competitor already existed. The candidate should be able to point out the distinct features of their product and how it is superior compared to the competitor’s product to convert the customer.
Tell Us What Your Favorite Products Are and Why You Like Them?
A successful product manager should be aware of the products made by all the market leaders and should be able to provide logical reasons for choosing the favorites. Curiosity is an essential attribute for a product manager.
This will also give you a clue regarding how updated the product manager is and how they analyze the design of a product and compare it with the outcomes of a competitor. This will help them incorporate any winning qualities into your product.
How Will You Handle Budget Cuts When Launching a Product?
There may be times when the product launch takes place during a crisis. The deadline may be hit because of the resignation of top executives or a natural disaster. Sometimes budgets will also be lowered.
This question will test the ability of the candidate to make quick decisions under crisis. Such candidates can handle unexpected emergencies at work.
How Would You Shut Down a Product or Service?
The product manager should be able to handle the end-of-life process. This would be part of your company’s policy to terminate unpopular systems.
The product manager must follow the correct protocol and inform the stakeholders on time regarding the reasons for shutting down a product.
Get the Best Product Manager With the Right Questions
Getting the right candidate as a product manager is crucial as it could make or break your company. The best way to do this would be to ask the right questions to the candidate and assess whether they understand your company and products well or not.
Hire the best candidate and watch your revenues reach new highs!