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Table of contents
1.
Introduction
2.
Product Manager Interview Questions for Freshers
2.1.
1. How do you define a product manager?
2.2.
2. What is an ideal product?
2.3.
3.  How to launch a successful product?
2.4.
4. How to select the priority of a product feature?
2.5.
5. How do you plan a product?
2.6.
6. Mention some critical factors used to monitor a task?
2.7.
7. Mention the skills required for a successful product manager.
2.8.
8. Name some product management software and tools.
2.9.
9. How to determine the scope of a product?
2.10.
10. What do you mean by GDPR?
3.
Product Manager Interview Questions for Experienced
3.1.
11. Tell us about a time when a product you handled went wrong.
3.2.
12. How do you handle being pressured or performing poorly?
3.3.
13. Which of your product was the most successful?
3.4.
14. How to perform budget management?
3.5.
15. What do you mean by a process in product management?
3.6.
16. What planning tools do you employ?
3.7.
17. How will you inspire your team members? 
3.8.
18. What was the most challenging product you survived?
3.9.
19. How do you make sure your product is always on schedule?
3.10.
20. How do you collaborate with stakeholders, sponsors, and clients?
3.11.
21. What do you mean by RACI charts?
3.12.
22. What is a PLM tool in product management?
3.13.
23. What do you mean by WBD?
3.14.
24. What do you mean by fishbone diagrams?
3.15.
25. What do you mean by EVM?
3.16.
26. What is the difference between risk and issue?
3.17.
27. What are Gannt charts?
3.18.
28. What do you mean by budget management?
3.19.
29. What do you mean by gold plating?
3.20.
30. What is fast tracking technique?
4.
Conclusion
Last Updated: May 28, 2024
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Product Manager Interview Questions

Author Nidhi Kumari
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Create a resume that lands you SDE interviews at MAANG
Speaker
Anubhav Sinha
SDE-2 @
12 Jun, 2024 @ 01:30 PM

Introduction

A product manager is a person that determines a good product that will fulfil the customer needs and demands along with the vital company goals. Selecting a product manager is a bit complex and assesses a candidate’s skills using various methods.  If you're seeking work in this field, you must hold deep knowledge of a wide range of product management-related topics. 

In this blog, we'll go through some basic, medium and hard-level product manager interview questions.

product manager interview questions

Click on the following link to read further: Javascript Interview Questions and Answers

Product Manager Interview Questions for Freshers

These product manager interview questions are likely to be asked in your upcoming interviews.

Here is a list of some basic product manager interview questions.

1. How do you define a product manager?

Ans: An expert who organises, plans, and manages the production of a product while sticking to parameters like budgets and deadlines is known as a product manager. In short, product managers supervise the production of a desired product from beginning to end. 

A product manager needs a broad range of abilities, expertise in product management approaches, and communication skills. The product manager handles every aspect of managing products, including planning, scheduling, and checking product progress.

2. What is an ideal product?

Ans: This question aims to determine what kinds of products you'd like to work on. It is one of the most crucial product manager interview questions. You can explain a product that excites you or in which you excel. You should include the following topics in your reply:

  • Whether you are interested in new, creative, effective, and simple products etc.
  • What are your primary skills?
  • If you like working alone or in a team.
  • What type of deadlines do you want?

3.  How to launch a successful product?

Ans: This question aims to determine your experience and the types of products you have worked on in the past. 

To launch a successful product, one can consider the following steps:

  • Step 1: Research the target customers.
     
  • Step 2: Techniques and methods used for your product.
     
  • Step 3: Your mode of operating specific tasks of the desired product.
     
  • Step 4: Set a target goal for your product launch.
     
  • Step 5: Create promotional content to accomplish the main objective of that product.
     
  • Step 6: Launch the product.

4. How to select the priority of a product feature?

Ans: The priority of a product feature determines when the system will complete the feature, irrespective of the product’s size and scope. This question is another way to see how adaptable and flexible you are as a product manager. 

You can explain how you decide an important feature and discard what is unrelated. The priority of a product’s feature depends on the product’s working and the user’s demands. One of the best models to prioritise a task is the Kano model.

5. How do you plan a product?

Ans: Begin by describing the components you believe to be essential to a product plan. Some of the essential components are as follows:

  • Tasks
  • Team members.
  • Budget.
  • Milestones. 
     

Then, give an example of how you have usually put these into practice.

6. Mention some critical factors used to monitor a task?

Ans: The following factors are used to determine the importance of a task:

  • Budget.
  • Pre-planned Time.
  • Company’s goals.
  • Scope of the product.
  • Priority of the product.

7. Mention the skills required for a successful product manager.

Ans: This is one of the frequently asked product manager interview questions. To be a successful product manager, you must have the following skills:

  • Data Analysis.
  • Business Understanding.
  • Communication skills.
  • Marketing research skills.
  • Leadership qualities.
  • Time management skills.

8. Name some product management software and tools.

Ans: Some of the standard product management software and tools are as follows:

  • JIRA: It is one of the best digital product development and management tools, such as Saas(software as a service) and apps.
     
  • Wrike: It helps organise product plans and team members.
     
  • ProductPlan: Useful for maximising the values of your product.
     
  • ProdPad: One of the best product lifecycle management tools.
     
  • Reveall: It is useful in product discovery and product management.

9. How to determine the scope of a product?

Ans: The product scope can be determined by following the given steps:

  • Step 1: Set product objectives.
     
  • Step 2: Find the needs of the product.
     
  • Step 3: Set a budget, and target customers and resources.
     
  • Step 4: Consider the product constraints.
     
  • Step 5: Write a good product scope statement.

10. What do you mean by GDPR?

Ans: GDPR stands for General Data Protection Regulation. The GDPR's goals are to safeguard people and the data that identifies them and to ensure that businesses that collect this information do so ethically. GDPR is crucial for a product manager to understand the company’s goals and objectives.

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Product Manager Interview Questions for Experienced

We will discuss some behavioral questions in this section. To answer these questions, you can follow the STAR method. Let’s have a quick look at the STAR method.

  • Situation: Begin by outlining the details of the event.
     
  • Task: Describe the task you were supposed to complete.
     
  • Action: Describe what you did to handle the situation.
     
  • Result: Finish by describing the outcome of the complete process.

11. Tell us about a time when a product you handled went wrong.

Ans: You should be prepared for your interview by having a few unsuccessful cases because managing unforeseen difficulties is essential to product management. As product management includes some setbacks, be honest and explain the problems you have handled in the past. 

You can follow the STAR method to answer these questions effectively. 

12. How do you handle being pressured or performing poorly?

Ans: It's simple to overlook that product managers are also people. You can pick your real-life example and use the STAR method to answer this question. The capacity to keep an eye on oneself and act promptly to any performance gaps separates a decent product manager from a great one. 

Explain your controlling and handling skills and how to deal with poor performances.

13. Which of your product was the most successful?

Ans: You can define a successful product based on the following conditions:

  • Product satisfying the business needs.
  • They are delivered and maintained under budget.
  • They are delivered and maintained on scheduled time.
  • They provide the anticipated business value and return on investment.

14. How to perform budget management?

Ans: Estimating costs, keeping track of expenses, choosing how to distribute funds, and making plans for unforeseen costs are all part of managing a budget. If you don't have much skill, you can discuss what you know about budgeting. If you can provide any historical instances, that's fantastic. 

It is also beneficial to demonstrate your capacity for learning new abilities. If it's relevant, talk about personal budgeting experiences you've had. 

15. What do you mean by a process in product management?

Ans: A process is a predefined method that allows for a specified number of actions to be completed to achieve a specific output. The five primary phases of the product life cycle process are as follows:

  • Development: Creation of a product on customer demand.
     
  • Introduction: The launching of the product in the market.
     
  • Growth: Increase in the profit and demand of the product.
     
  • Maturity: When sales start to slow down after enduring rapid growth, you've reached maturity.
     
  • Decline: The last stage of the product.
product management

16. What planning tools do you employ?

Ans: You should be familiar with various product management tools. Find out what kind of tools you will be required to employ by doing research. Make a list of all the tools you have previously used before your interview. Try getting familiar with the tool or see if you've used any others like it.

Some standard product planning tools are Asana, Notion, and RACI charts.

17. How will you inspire your team members? 

Ans: As long as you can provide specific instances of how you've inspired team members in the past, there is no right or wrong response to this question. You can start explaining your situation by outlining the compliments and motivation you have given your team members. 

As a leader, it's crucial to maintain both the focus of your team and their interest in the products they are working on. 

18. What was the most challenging product you survived?

Ans: The interviewer will ask this question to assess your team-leading and conflict-resolution techniques. Your answer will reflect your product management background. Try to cover your management skills, which will give the employer a positive impression. 

The employer can learn how they use candidates’ hard and soft skills when pushed to their absolute limits and beyond by asking them about a complex product.

19. How do you make sure your product is always on schedule?

Ans: Time management is one of the most crucial skills of a product manager. By asking these types of product manager interview questions, the interviewer determines the time management skills of the candidate. 

Describe your strategic plan for your team while a product is in progress. Regular and good communication is essential to keeping a product on schedule. Therefore, describe how you will communicate with your team members during the project. 

20. How do you collaborate with stakeholders, sponsors, and clients?

Ans: A good product manager should connect with product stakeholders, sponsors, and client management while working closely with the team to complete tasks. These experts frequently offer great assistance with the specifics of your job. Communicate with them frequently enough to keep them happy but not so frequently that they become weary of hearing from you.

21. What do you mean by RACI charts?

Ans: A Responsibility Assignment Matrix (RAM), often known as a RACI chart or RACI matrix, is a tool used in product management. The chart guarantees effective teamwork and seamless communication at all levels. In actuality, it's a straightforward table or spreadsheet listing all product stakeholders and their degree of involvement in each activity, indicated by the letters R, A, C, or I. 

R, A, C, and I stand for:

  • Responsible 
  • Accountable
  • Consulted
  • Informed
raci chart

22. What is a PLM tool in product management?

Ans: PLM stands for Product lifecycle management. PLM is an online tool or software. It is used to manage the resources, designing, launching, testing, marketing, sales, and monitoring phase of a product or service. The only goal of a PLM tool is to create a product that stands out in the marketplace and survives there until there is a market for it. 

Here are some benefits of using a PLM tool:

  • Cost savings for prototyping.
  • Superior and more dependable product.
  • A more effective system for product optimisation.
  • Better requests for quotes from suppliers.
  • More quickly identifying sales opportunities and revenue sources.
  • Improved supply chain cooperation.
  • Improved capacity to handle changes.

 

Some of the standard PLM tools are as follows:

  • Oracle Agile: Teams can execute tasks like data management, product quality management, and remodelling products with the help of Oracle Agile software.
     
  • Aras PLM: Aras PLM is a PLM tool with various CAD data management options and 3D model viewing.
     
  • Centric retail PLM: It is a cloud software tool. It has resources that team members can use to improve product introduction features.

23. What do you mean by WBD?

Ans: WBD stands for Work breakdown structure. Product managers typically use this approach to streamline the execution of a product. It is a product management system that completes big products with many moving parts step-by-step. WBS is a method for breaking down complicated products into smaller, more manageable jobs. WBD follows a hierarchical pattern in two different ways:

  • Top-down approach: In the top-down approach, we break the product’s largest module or task. This method will first identify the solution before breaking it down into the smaller stages needed to achieve it. It is typically the recommended method for developing WBS.
     
  • Bottom-up approach: It is a very simple method. The bottom-up approach works best for creating creative solutions to problems. It starts working by choosing a single activity that is simple to perform and finish it.
     

The main goal of the work breakdown structure is to break down complex activities into sub-activities.

24. What do you mean by fishbone diagrams?

Ans: A Fishbone diagram can examine the most complicated products. It is used to identify any elements that caused process delays. The Fishbone diagram is a problem-solving tool to identify an issue's core cause. Its name comes from its fish-like shape. Depending on the type of Fishbone diagram or the product, you may use different categories to group product activities to determine cause and effect.

fishbone diagram

25. What do you mean by EVM?

Ans: EVM stands for Earned value management. The product manager uses EVM to monitor progress against a baseline, identify problems, and anticipate cost (and, to some extent, schedule) upon completion.  It is a product performance management tool that integrates cost, schedule, technical scope, and risk. It supports the creation of updated product performance and cost estimations.

26. What is the difference between risk and issue?

Ans: The product manager needs to take quick action to find solutions to all of the current problems. For high-impact hazards, they prepare plans for mitigation in advance. So, knowing the risks and issues is crucial for a product manager.

The differences between risk and issue are as follows:

  • While issues are primarily negative, risks can also be positive or negative.
     
  • Issues are focused on the product's current state, whereas risks present potential future outcomes that may occur in a product.
     
  • The Risk Register is used for risk documentation, and the Issue Register is used for issue documentation.

27. What are Gannt charts?

Ans: A Gantt chart is a product management tool that shows the relationship between work performed over time and the time scheduled for the task. A horizontal bar chart known as a Gantt chart is used in product management to graphically depict a product plan over time. The Gantt charts can include the following factors:

  • Beginning and ending dates of tasks.
  • Milestones.
  • Relationships between tasks.
  • Assignees.
gantt chart

28. What do you mean by budget management?

Ans: Companies frequently have a corporate budget and budgets for specific departments. Budget management is the process of recording and managing income and expenses.

Budgets typically contain four components:

  • Revenue.
  • Capital costs.
  • Operational costs.
  • Personnel costs.

29. What do you mean by gold plating?

Ans: Gold plating can increase product costs and timelines, and since it wasn't explicitly requested, there is little value in including the extra feature. When the product team includes extra features—usually as "freebies" for the client—that were not initially included in the scope, this is known as gold plating. Diminishing returns is the common term for this.

Product managers often do gold plating to satisfy the client with the product, although it is only sometimes worthwhile in terms of time, money, and effort.

30. What is fast tracking technique?

Ans: The main features of the fast-tracking technique are as follows:

  • This results in both an increase in rework and risk.
  • Tasks or phases are completed concurrently to reduce the timeline.
  • It only functions when it can overlap activities or stages to shorten the product's duration. 
  • Only adequate for tasks requiring more significant resources.

Conclusion

In this article, you learned about the top 30 product manager interview questions. This article covered all the essential topics related to the program manager interview questions in detail. 

Check out the following articles on interview questions:

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