When you appear for product manager interviews, the nature of questions can largely vary from technical, behavioral, and analytical to product-related such as product management, product success, and monitoring. Here’s a list of 20 questions along with tips and sample answers:
1. Describe a Product Manager
From what you answer, the interviewer will try to understand your view of a product manager and if that goes well with their idea of a product manager.
Tip 1: Give a brief and comprehensive answer.
Tip 2: Explain the skills and roles of a product manager.
“Product manager is an individual who leads the product management. He knows what, why, when, and how of a product and is highly capable of making decisions as per innovative and technological trends and market conditions. A product manager is responsible for the management of the product team and activities.”
2. How Do You Plan Product Development?
Even though the process of product development varies from company to company and product to product, the interviewer will assess if you are familiar with some generally significant steps of product development planning.
Tip 1: Emphasize on the significance of product development.
Tip 2: Highlight all the essentials steps.
“Planning product development is important to have a proper guideline to follow. To plan product development, the development team needs to identify stakeholder/customer requirements and market trends, brainstorm the ideas, measure scalability, collect resources, avert risks, and execute the plan.”
3. What Do You Like and Not Like about Product Management?
Everyone has likings and disliking in their career, and interviewers understand that. However, it usually makes an important question in the interview.
Tip 1: Give a professional answer.
Tip 2: Answer briefly.
“Something that I like the most about product manager because I get to create and build a lot of innovative products for consumers. What I do not like is delays in the project as it leaves the product on a standstill and is often daunting.”
4. How Would You Redesign a Product?
By what you answer, the interviewer will judge your redesigning skills and be good at rebuilding an already built product to bring it in line with current industry trends.
Tip 1: Your answer should demonstrate what you know about product redesign.
Tip 2: Explain your strategic approach to product redesign.
“Product redesign means incorporating new requirements and technologies into a product. A strategic roadmap helps redesign a product. For that, one needs to figure out what a product lacks and the improvements that it needs. Next, build new features, run a few tests, and release the final product.”
5. How to Prevent Product Failure?
Here, the interviewer is trying to analyze your skills and capabilities to prevent a product from failing and save the company from any big loss.
Tip 1: List down factors that can result in product failure.
Tip 2: Enlist some tips and techniques to prevent so from happening.
“A product fails when it is not innovative, is poorly designed, offers bad user experience, and is over-priced. Product failure can be prevented by incorporating an innovative feature, designing a great product, offering a rich user experience, testing the samples, and setting the right price.”
6. When Do You Think is the Right Time to Cut the Corners and Launch the Product?
Many people fail to decide when it is the right time to move towards the product launch. Here, the interviewer is trying to look into your efficiency and decision-making capabilities.
Tip 1: Use your past experiences to offer a plausible answer.
Tip 2: Try to understand what the interviewer is expecting.
“I think the right time to cut corners and open the doors for a product launch is when the deadline has been long passed, and the team has taken more than allocated time for product development. It is also fine to launch a product when the prototype is ready and requires market feedback for further development. However, it is important to make sure that the product is ready for launch.”
7. How Do You Track the Progress of a Product?
Tracking the progress of a product plays a great role in meeting the deadlines. Here, the interviewer will try to assess if you are good at monitoring product progress and performance during development.
Tip 1: Explain some progress tracking tools.
Tip 2: Enlist some performance measurement metrics.
“There are several performance metrics and tracking tools included in the product management plan that can be used to track the progress. Some common tools include product management software, frequent reporting, and a feedback loop.”
8. How Will You Manage Resources Needed for Product?
Resource management is an important part of a product management plan. From what you answer, the interviewer will try to analyze your resource management skills and capabilities.
Tip 1: Describe resource management briefly.
Tip 2: Explain your approach to managing resource needs.
“Managing resources is a significant part of product development. To manage resources needed for a project, one should identify the resource requirements, allocate and prioritize resources against each product activity, and put forward the demand.”
9. What is the Purpose of PLM?
By what you answer, the interviewer will try to judge your knowledge and information regarding product management.
Tip 1: Describe PLM briefly.
Tip 2: Enlist the major purpose of PLM.
PLM stands for Product Lifecycle Management. It includes everything from planning to final execution of the product development plan. The purpose of PLM is to help product managers improve quality, reduce marketing time, and ensure sustainable operations.”
10. What Differentiates PLM from ERP?
Here, the interviewer is assessing your theoretical knowledge and understanding of product management.
Tip 1: Give a comprehensive answer, do not jump into details.
Tip 2: Highlight significant points of difference.
While PLM concerns product design and innovation, ERP deals with the manufacturing of quality products. PLM looks into design and production. ERP takes care of technical elements such as resource planning, HR, accounting, and order management.”
11. What are the Key Performance Metrics of a Product in the Market?
Here, the interviewer wants to know how you would determine the performance of a product that leads towards product success.
Tip 1: List down key performance metrics.
Tip 2: Emphasize on customer satisfaction and market trends.
“The product success depends on the following parameters, and so, these are regarded as key performance metrics. The major ones include product awareness, frequency of use, product depth, efficiency, and customer satisfaction.”
12. How Much Does Effective Communication Matter in Product Management?
The interviewer will assess your view regarding the importance of effective communication in product management by what you answer.
Tip 1: Describe communication as a component of the product management plan.
Tip 2: Explain how you would ensure effective communication among team members as a sprouts manager.
“Communication is an essential component of the product management plan, and so, the product development team uses various tools to communicate and update regarding the product. As a product manager, I would ensure effective and transparent communication by conducting regular meetings, feedback, and reporting.”
13. Describe Your Role as a Product Manager on Your Team.
As the product manager leads the development team, his role is crucial. The interviewer wants to know how you will act as a product manager.
Tip 1: Offer a realistic explanation.
Tip 2: Explain the roles and responsibilities of a product manager.
“As a product manager, I would lead the product management plan, assign roles and responsibilities as per team members’ expertise, try my best to meet requirements and deadlines, ensure effective communication to keep the team on the same page, and tackle technical and ethical challenges.”
14. Where Do You See Yourself in 5 Years as a Product Manager?
Product manager interview often includes personal questions. Through this question, the interviewer is trying to assess your goals and ambitions.
Tip 1: Sound realistic.
Tip 2: Answer logically.
“I see myself successful as a product manager and fully capable of aligning my goals with the organization’s insight and long-term objectives.”
15. What Skills Should a Product Manager Possess?
Here, the interviewer is analyzing the skills you possess as a product manager.
Tip 1: Enlist the skills and capabilities of a product manager.
Tip 2: Include skills that you have or can easily adopt.
“A product manager should have a theoretical understanding and practical experience in product management. He should be good at critical thinking, decision making, teamwork, leadership, communication, organization, time management, customer relationship management, supervision, and risk management.”
16. What Tools and Techniques Allow Better Product Management?
Product management uses various tools and techniques. The interviewer wants to know if you are familiar with some.
Tip 1: Answer briefly.
Tip 2: Highlight the tools and techniques you have previously used.
“A number of tools and techniques help with different aspects of product management, including tracking, reporting, surveying, analysis, and communication. Some popular one includes ProductPlan, Amplitude, Zoom, Gartner, Jira, etc. As a product manager, I found ProductPlan as a successful and result-driven tool. It helps design a roadmap for product development and offers you a timeline to follow. This way, you stay on track with project deadlines and deliverables.”
17. How Would You Ensure Better Risk Management for Your Product?
Here, the interviewer is trying to judge your risk management skills and efficiency in facing unforeseen challenges.
Tip 1: Explain risk management as part of the product management plan.
Tip 2: Enlist ways to manage risks and constraints.
“Effective risk management can be done by a beforehand analysis of the risks and constraints. The product team should brainstorm ideas and implement them before time to avert risks. It might include increasing the budget, enhancing the flow of resources, increasing the personnel, or managing work hours.”
18. How Would You Conduct a Competitive Analysis?
From what you answer, the interviewer will assess your understanding of competitive analysis, both internal and external.
Tip 1: Break your answer into two parts.
Tip 2: Include both financial and technical aspects.
“When it comes to internal competitive analysis, there are various tools and techniques to implement while the most significant one is the SWOT analysis. It helps you determine strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats associated with a product. It offers a financial analysis of the company as well.
A technical and detailed competitive analysis allows a feature-by-feature comparison. This way, you can highlight the gaps between yours and the competitor’s product. There are several software and systems to conduct technical competitive analysis. Often, companies hire a third party for an unbiased competitive analysis.”
19. What are Modern Technological Trends to Incorporate in a Product and Why?
A professional product manager always keeps an eye on modern technological trends. Here, the interviewer will analyze how updated you are with current technologies.
Tip 1: Enlist only the technologies you have knowledge of.
Tip 2: Your answer should demonstrate why technological trends should be incorporated.
“Some current technological trends include augmented reality, virtual reality, artificial intelligence, Blockchain, audio optimization, and automation. Technological trends should be added to the products as they offer better user experience, allow automation, and help bring effective solutions to the market.”
20. How Would You Decide the Price of a Product?
The product manager is largely responsible for deciding the price of a product. The interviewer wants to know about the factors you consider in setting the product price.
Tip 1: Describe your pricing strategy.
Tip 2: Enlist significant cost determining factors.
“I would follow the organization’s pricing strategy while evaluating some significant cost determining factors to conclude if they align. This comes as a balanced pricing strategy. The important factors to consider are variable costs, fixed costs, and profit margin. Together, this helps find out how much has been spent on product development and what the company aims to earn per unit.”