If we are not careful, it is easy to fall into the trap of project management and still believe that you are doing product management as you are talking to users, running sprints and delivering.
It is the most dangerous trap in the life of a Product Manager. This disguise of work can slowly corrupt the mindset and hinder career growth, and it also limits the growth of the organization you work for.
Here are these 20 crisp signs to watch for before you get trapped:
#. You ship and forget it.
#. You are the gatekeeper.
#. You don’t do product retros.
#. You are deep in prioritization.
#. You are tracking lagging metrics.
#. Competitor analysis is your strategy.
#. Your roadmap is a list of new features.
#. You already have solutions for the future.
#. You don’t solve a problem again and again.
#. You represent the customer, not the market.
#. You conceptualize and the team implements it.
#. You talk about the outputs and not the outcomes.
#. You build because a lot of customers are asking for it.
#. Product evolution for you is a set of execution tactics.
#. You only start when all user requirements are covered.
#. Your interaction with customers for ‘requirement gathering’.
#. You think creativity and experimentation are bottlenecks for execution.
#. You look forward to delivery than reaching customer success milestones.
#. You worry about technology and implementation more than the user pain.
Often, not early realized, these project management practices will also creep in when organizations want to bring a big change. For example, moving to different market segments or bringing big transformation for anticipated demand. They fail to understand that it is not just a methodology or process (agile vs monolith) or the outlook (internal vs external) they need to adopt, but a different thought process that got them succeeded in the first place.
All these pitfalls and not escapable. In our daily lives, some of these would become a requirement of the job. I, myself have become mistakenly done a few of these practices. However, it is important to recognize what you are doing and when you are doing it. We should cross the line only when it is really important and we should do it by communicating our intention publicly, else it is a slippery slope.