Published in


Minimum Requirement Knowledge for Product Managers

Photo by Christin Hume on Unsplash

Skills to Build or Improve

Keep in mind that the skills needed in a PM job can be totally different depending on the product, company size, location, and industry. It’s also important to build broader skills and essentially be a generalist.

Communication (verbal and written):

This is one of the MOST important skills you should ace. As a PM, you’ll interact with cross-functional teams, presenting your ideas, convincing people, selling ideas, and helping them to move in the right direction. Communication, verbal and written, is definitely something you need to craft and improve constantly.


You’ll be working with diverse teams so you need to be a leader and an amazing team player. People should enjoy working with you and respect your opinions. It’s interesting because a lot of time you lead without the formal authority because you’re not their manager. You should lead the team and help them to build powerful products.

Technical Skills:

You don’t need to know all the programming languages, but you need to know how to work with engineering teams. Spend time understanding the technology behind what your team is building and what skills you need to spend more time learning. Is it a specific language or technology? Spend time understanding those basic principles.


Have you worked with Marketing teams before? If you worked crafting a narrative about a user, you will use this skill as a PM. It’s such an important skill to know how to develop a product email or communicate the value of your product to different stakeholders, which requires that you strategize and tailor your narrative depending on their goals or expertise.

UX Research:

You need to know how to conduct user research, speak with users to troubleshoot issues and help to define the problem the research will try to uncover. Understanding your competitors, market size, and opportunities really well is key, and you should spend time working on that and working closely with your UX Research team.


You don’t need to know how to create beautiful designs, but you need to be able to identify your users’ needs, brainstorm with your design team on how to solve the problems your users are having, and of course, it’s always handy to have basic design skills, for example, being able to sketch possible solutions, and create compelling decks.


Problems and conflicts are always coming and going, and this is actually a good thing. During conflict, you’re able to understand different points of view and be more empathetic. You’ll have unexpected challenges, and your attitude towards them will make the difference. Don’t be afraid to be scrappy, ask questions, and bring everyone together towards the right solution.

Project Management:

Another important skill that I don’t see many people talking about, the PM role is totally different from the Project Manager’s, although having Project Manager skills is always handy. Did you outline goals and help the team focus on the right activities to bring a project to life, hitting the milestones?

Data Analysis:

You need to be able to understand numbers and organize the data in a way that gives you the insights needed about your users. You’ll be checking the available data or brainstorming ways to gather insights from your users, and you’ll use this information to make recommendations to your team, engineers, marketing, design, and product teams.


Often you’re working with a deadline in mind, so it’s so important to be a planner. It’ll give you a better sense of what should be prioritized, what will have the most impact, or what’s needed to move the product in the right direction. You’ll collaborate with your cross-functional team. Having planning and strategy skills is crucial.


It’s expected that you have skills that will help you and the team build stronger products. You might need to develop a model to predict how much revenue this new product or feature will bring. It doesn’t need to be fancy, and you can work with other teams to make it more powerful and improve the model as new information is available.

Product-Related Aspects of Your Current Job

It’s always easiest to transition to Product Management internally within your current company, although most of the time it’s not as easy as it seems. I’d recommend that you plan really well for this transition, be extremely strategic and focus first on building the skills needed for a product role in your current job, which means volunteering for product-related projects, networking with the product team, asking questions, and getting the proper training outside or inside your company.

Perform Personal Projects or Volunteer to Product-Related Projects

Before I started to work on some personal projects, I had no idea how it would help me during my product journey. I started to develop a product by myself because I wanted to have experience owning my product; hiring engineers, designers, UX researchers; and also looking for funding. It was a lot, and I learned so much. Moreover, when I was interviewing, they were always asking me questions about the product I was developing. So, I had a lot to tell them.

Craft a Resume and Develop a Product Portfolio

I gave some tips regarding the PM resume and portfolio in a prior blog post. I cannot stress enough the importance of a well-crafted PM resume and portfolio. Not all PMs develop a portfolio, and I think this is a huge mistake on their part.


  • Keep it short and simple.
  • Be specific.
  • Quantify achievements.
  • Focus on the right skills for the job.
  • Highlight experience relevant to the specific job.

Your Portfolio:

  • Establishes your brand.
  • Defines your sense of style.
  • Highlights your strengths.
  • Gives insight into your personality and work ethic.
  • Speaks the product language.

👋 Feel Free to Clap and Share your Thoughts!

Find more at our LinkedIn, Instagram, and Twitter. Check our podcast. Follow our LinkedIn page and Newsletter!



PM101 is a well-established blog that shares valuable content about product management. It has been receiving half a million visitors per year since 2016 and it’s free to access. PM101 has begun accepting guest posts, which allows other experts in the field share their insights.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
Thaisa Fernandes

Product & Program Management | Global Partnerships | Host @ Latinx in Power Podcast | Book Co-Author @ Mulheres de Produto | Vegan