Top 3 Tips for Hiring Great Product Managers

Hiring an excellent Product Manager requires a lot of experience. The position is like a unicorn that is difficult to find in today's workforce.

4/17/20242 min read

woman in blue long sleeve shirt sitting beside woman in black long sleeve shirt
woman in blue long sleeve shirt sitting beside woman in black long sleeve shirt

Top 3 Tips for Hiring Great Product Managers

There's a lot to think about when hiring a Product Manager.  However, it's easy to get caught up in the ideal candidate and all the qualities you want for a new hire.  Before you begin interviewing candidates, think of these 3 tips to get started on the right track.

1.     Isolate the ‘Must Have’ skill-sets before talking with candidates.

o    Often, recruiters and managers have a laundry list of all the qualities they want in a candidate. Product Managers typically do a lot of different tasks so the list can be quite extensive. However, when digging deeper, you’ll often find that there are three or four primary skill-sets required of a candidate. Isolate those top 3 skill-sets out of the entire set of qualifications before talking with candidates. Focus only on candidates who excel in those skills when doing your pre-screening.

2.     Soft skills or secondary skills matter!

o    You found a great Product Manager only to find out they have a bad habit of leaving early during the week. When interviewing, do you try to assess values like honesty, work-ethic, ambition, responsibility, judgement, and teamwork? These characteristics often separate the top performers from mediocre candidates. Past performance and behavior typically will provide the best method for evaluating these soft skills. What are their outside activities and what roles do they serve outside of work? Did they work on advanced education like an MBA? Are they a leader in their church or community? Do they have external interests in which they excel? All of these little questions help to provide a better 360 view of the candidate’s characteristics and soft skills.

3.     Do your research outside the interview!

o    It’s not enough to interview candidates in the office. HR or Hiring Managers need to research top candidates outside of the office. Talk with your network, conduct reference checks, and check out their social media pages. Employers typically want a candidate that is a cultural fit within the organization. Poking around to better understand a candidate’s background and interests will assist in determining if a candidate will fit into your organization.

Learn about Coserta’s approach to recruiting top product management talent!

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