Industry-focused product or general training?

  • 15 April 2022
  • 4 replies
  • 41 views

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Hi! I am just starting in this product ecosystem, and even though I am interested in the media industry, I would like to know if it is better to get general training in product or directly get specific training in media products.  

 

In any case, do you have some recommendations to start? 
 

thank you! 


4 replies

Userlevel 3
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Hi @Tessamondria

Welcome to the journey of Product!

To answer your question directly, quality Product Managers can be industry-agnostic.  PM skills are transferable as it boils down to these 3 main pillars:

  1. Product Sense - are you able to understand your market and users to create a product that solves a problem?
  2. Execution - are you able to prioritize the work in a way that the organization gets the most value for the least amount of effort?  How would you measure that?
  3. Leadership - are you able to rally the teams towards a common goal?  Are you able to collaborate easily with others?

To add on, if your personal/professional goal is to work in the Media Industry - then I would focus my efforts on finding a PM role with an organization in that industry.  PM skills can be grown at any organization.  Growing those PM skills to be industry-specific... that’s where working for a Media-focused organization would give you the biggest value for the least amount of effort. 😉

Userlevel 2
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Hi Tessamondria,

I have worked in some quiet industries, and what works for me it was that I have a clear baseline of knowledge of product and project management. If you know how to approach each problem, you will be flexible to migrate from industry to industry. 

You will need to invest time learning from the industry, but once you understand how the market and audience work, you will be able to work perfectly with that product.

Userlevel 2
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Coming from a B2B (e-commerce) perspective I would say that it’s definitely a leg up if you know the ins-and-outs before you go into the job. Our market is quite extensive and has a lot of moving parts that tend to re-shuffle themselves every 5 years. Which is also why, when hiring, I’m not primarily looking for industry expertise since you basically need to re-train yourself every 2-3 years anyway. 

 

That being said; @abourjaily alluded earlier to being great at ‘product sense’ and I could argue that in-depth domain/industry knowledge helps there.

Userlevel 6
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I think @abourjaily nailed it: product managers can be relatively industry-agnostic. If you take the skills that he’s laid out and explained and apply them to any industry, you’ll have your “North Star” for navigating the industry. 

With that being said, there’s always a multitude of ways to learn about an industry. I try to jump in, head-first, to as much content as I can about the industry I’m joining (lexicon/vocabulary, highest points of interests, pertinent KPIs, etc). At the same time, you really do need to have the core skills and capabilities outlined above to be a little more dynamic. I tested my “flexibility” by going from telephony (8 years) to legal tech (2.5 years). It was a learning curve but it did test my mettle when it comes down to produce sense, execution, and leadership.

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