Mental models that make you a better product manager

Saurabh Rastogi
Mar 1 · 8 min read
By Martin Eriksson- Source

What are the mental models?

The Wikipedia states — “A mental model is an explanation of someone’s thought process about how something works in the real world. It is a representation of the surrounding world, the relationships between its various parts and a person’s intuitive perception about his or her own acts and their consequences.”

So why mental models?

Mental models influence our thought process, how we view and understand things. They are thinking tools that help us to assimilate information, make associations and hence ‘judge’ opportunities that are presented to us. They help to train the brain to think in a way for a given problem. So mental models help us to simplify the complex entities into understandable chunks. And by virtue of doing so, mental models assist greatly in the tough job of decision making.

  1. Be proficient in using those tools.

Mental models that help in strategic decision making

Strategic decision making has several challenges as it requires answers to questions you can at the best ‘guess’ for the future.

Eisenhower matrix

Mental models to help you understand your team better

As, Daniel Goleman, the author who popularized EQ with his book, states, “For leaders, the first task in management has nothing to do with leading others; step one poses the challenge of knowing and managing oneself.”

Goleman outlines four EQ traits that help with motivations, impact, interactions, and collaboration.

  1. Self-management — to manage your own work without external help. It helps you see if your motivation is intrinsic or driven by external factors like bonus or appreciation.
  2. Empathy — to understand what the other person is going through and treating them with compassion and care.
  3. Social Skills — to help understand how you interact with your team and your ability to build relationships. It helps you see if you are a people person or not.

Unboxing Product Management

Your weekly dose of everything related to Product, Process and People.

Saurabh Rastogi

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Unboxing Product Management

Your weekly dose of everything related to Product, Process and People.