Ed. 013 Career Backgrounds of Program Managers
Think you need to land a PgM gig to progress as one? Nope, you just need to act like one.
Hello! We’re back for another edition of The Unblockers. Feel like working with us? Send me a DM and let’s chat! If this is your first time here and like what you see, consider subscribing. 💗
⭕ Having trouble viewing some of the pay-walled articles? Use Outline.com to help.
Amusingly, nearly all of the career paths listed for SWEs in the article just happen to be career backgrounds for many of the program managers I know.
Why does this matter? Program Managers come from career backgrounds of all shapes and sizes. For many PgM roles, you don’t actually need to have previously been a PgM (in title). You just need to have operated in the capacity of a program manager. In fact, many times, Google and Facebook explicitly list this in their job descriptions.
Need More PM Content? Check out The Stakeholder Report
Looking for more curated content? Our fine friends from The Stakeholder Report has a weekly newsletter aimed at both new and seasoned Project/Program Managers with updates on the craft, education, leadership, and general business acumen.
Look, I get it. Context switching, 1 on 1s, tiger teams, council meetings. It’s overwhelming. Luckily there’s a SaaS tool for nearly every operational headache.
Why does this matter? Context switching is expensive. Optimize your workflows by arming yourself with apps that automate and organize your thoughts. I really like the Tot scratchpad to help me take notes (OSX and iOS only).
Well, maybe not my favorite PM interview question, but someone else certainly seems to think so.
Why does this matter? The crux of this interview question? Identify what type of Product Manager they are and try not to hire “clones.” There are some good takeaways in how they define the biases and values of Product Managers. These same biases (qualities IMHO) are useful to Program Managers as well.
Dashboards are Dead (kind of) 📊
Well, not really. They’re just evolving and Count has an amusing approach to dashboards.
Why does this matter? Project and program management are becoming more collaborative. In order to make quick, impactful decisions, the democratization of data silos is key. Quickly retrieving and visualizing data for consumption can no longer be limited to querying databases and spreadsheets.
Ever wonder how theoretical questions work at FAANG companies? If not, you should. Take a look at how these Product Managers crush these interview questions.
Why does this matter? If you interview for PgM roles at FAANG, you’ll definitely be bombarded with questions like these. Notice the pauses and composure as they organize their thoughts to formulate an answer. Also, take note of how each subsequent question builds on the answer of the previous question.
Job Postings and Resources 📝
See you next week 🙏
Thanks again for reading. Like what you read and feel like supporting? Consider buying me a coffee below!