Product Manager Career Path: 3 Important Things To Know (2021)


The position of the product manager is becoming more and more popular. However, there is sometimes doubt as to what the product manager is doing. Let’s have a look at the product manager career path.

Product managers work to identify the needs and challenges of their intended clients and to convert these observations into proposals for new product creation or current product improvement.

They set up business cases or investment concept proposals and when accepted by the management, work directly with technical or research and development departments to define specifications and facilitate the process of turning the proposal into a new product.

And they do all this by directing, engaging, and guiding persons and functions around their organization, often with little more institutional authority than their willingness to convince others to back up their thoughts. Product managers become subject matter specialists in their industries and technologies and are frequently called upon to consult with clients or prospects and to appear at business events or to contribute to related publications.

Now the question arises that how to get into product management?

  1. Networking can help you find out about positions before they surface on career boards to get insider information about what the recruiting manager is looking for.
  2. It would also enable you to have contacts with people in the industry via a link on LinkedIn.
  3. Do as best as you can to update your resume and interview skills.
  4. Get internships even though it’s a few hours a week for businesses to take as many internships as possible while offering you a summer paying internship.
  1. Product Manager Career Path
  2. Is product management a good career?
  3. Benefits of Career in this field

1. Product Manager Career Path

Although product managers may advance their duties or divisions, it is typical for experienced product managers to seek career pathways in general management or functional management positions. Many are going into sales and marketing jobs. Their wide base of experience, offering, and operational expertise make them particularly attractive for a variety of positions in an organization.

A product management career is rich in difficulties and opportunities to develop and add to the growth of a company. The job is part of entrepreneurship and part of general management, and individuals who tend to act with a high degree of accountability and freedom enjoy a great deal of work in this position.

In this article, we’ll take a look at some typical positions of product managers in their entire product manager career path

Product manager hierarchy product management job titles are as follows:

  1. Associate Product Manager/junior product manager
  2. Product Manager
  3. group product manager
  4. Senior Product Manager
  5. Principal Product Manager
  6. Director of Product
  7. VP of Product
  8. Chief Product Officer and Beyond

1. Associate Product Manager or /junior product manager is usually a junior position in their entire product manager career path intended for graduates or newcomers to immerse themselves in the world of product management. This position will enable them to report to the Product Manager, who is serving as guidance or tutor.

These workshops provide the Associate Product Manager with an ability to understand how the organization runs the product, the market in which it works, and what the Product Manager does. Associate Product Manager is responsible for small-scale features that relate to a mid-level product plan or senior product manager. The associate product manager is accountable to cover some stuff that product managers do such as:

  1. Collection of quantitative commodity data and metrics by market research
  2. Synthesizing Client Study
  3. Gathering product specifications and aligning them with market priorities
  4. Coordinating stakeholders to fulfill a goal of the commodity
  5. Developing new capabilities of the product
  6. Act on creating product plans

2. Product Manager: Being a product manager You’re going to need some technical experience to get to this stage along your product manager career journey. Specific product management expertise is not inherently required, but it is anticipated that you will clearly show your teamwork, coordination, and prioritization skills. A career path for a product manager results in responsibility for the whole life cycle of the project, for the team, and the relationship between developers and other team members. It is important to consider the value proposition of the product as well as the understanding of consumer challenges and needs. 

Product manager growth indicates being consulted for process guidance, partnerships, tactical moves, etc., and you will need to be assured and well informed by the data. Product managers are responsible for the plan, the roadmap, and the attributes of the product. You would need to be able to collaborate with cross-functional departments, including UX, engineering, and marketing, to conduct reliable data collection, forecasting, and market research. This mid-level product position is close to that of the Associate Level Product Manager, except that in addition to being a ‘go-to’ guide for other teams, you would be the contact person for the product team itself specific to your product.

Now, the career path after the product manager is of a Group product manager.

3. Group product manager: The Group Product Manager (GPM) is a leading position that includes managing the product teams responsible for a specific product group. The role is a delicate balance between individual participation and the management of the people. Some GPMs tend to lean more towards individual contributions; to undertake analysis, to concentrate on policy, and more broadly, to be more hands-on with growth. Others tend to take a zoomed-out approach and rely more on team management.

4. Senior Product Manager: For a Senior Product Manager job You need direct product management expertise and working years at this level in the product manager career path This is because you need to improve the capacity to think critically, lead by example, efficiently evaluate nuanced, interdependent variables, and establish a sense of responsibility for serious decisions. Deep product and business awareness are required, as well as the ability to adapt to and resolve challenging circumstances.

Responsibilities :

  1. Design and execute product plans that are consistent with business vision
  2. Collect and evaluate input from consumers, partners, and other teams to help define specifications, functionality, and final products.
  3. Act with senior management to build product plans and roadmaps
  4. Lead product managers and coordinate cross-functional teams;
  5. Documents on the development and analysis of commodity specifications (PRD)

5. Principal Product Manager: The key position of Principal Product Manager is a higher-level role than that of Sr. Product Manager. The key position of Product Manager is similar to the role of Principal Engineer. It is the position of the highest individual donor. It is similar to the position of the director without responsibility for the supervision of staff, lower wages, and benefits.

Therefore, even though the HR may claim that the Principal Product Manager is equal to the Directory Level role, it is typically a little below the Director Level role. However, it is certainly higher than the Sr. The position of Product Manager. You may provide an enterprise where the Principal Product Manager and the Product Manager report to the VP and all other Product Managers, Sr and below, to the Product Manager.

6. Director of Product: The Director of Product is responsible for the product planning and execution of the company over the life of the business. This involves collecting and prioritizing criteria for the product, identifying the product vision, and coordinating with other directors from the manufacturing, marketing, distribution, and operating divisions to ensure that the priorities of financial and customer satisfaction are fulfilled.

Responsibility of the Director of Product

  1. Supervisory role: First and foremost, the job is a position of leadership and in this capacity, the Director of Product oversees and is responsible to the Chief Product Officer and stakeholders for all operations of the Product Management Department.
  2. Collaboration: The position of Director of Product is often cross-functional and as such, the Director is required to be aligned with other Product Line Directors.
  3. Vision Creation: As the head of the product group, the Director has to create an understanding and nurture the vision of the product, the business case, as well as the collection of the product development materials required to help develop product proposals with clarity.

7. VP of Product: At VP of Product, you are considerably less active in the hands-on tasks related to the product creation process. There may be more than one VP of Product in a broad company, depending on the number of product lines.

If there is one VP or more, this function is a high-level support resource for the production department responsible for the whole product collection and how it blends into the rest of the organization.

The VP position is both to facilitate the organization of goods at a high level and to serve as a monitor of market operations, C-level stakeholders, and where appropriate, the Board of Directors. 


  1. Owning a vision for the commodity and a route map. Do they prepare the answers to the questions like What are the key values for this? Who are we going for here? What are the most important topics to be concentrating on right now?
  2. Meeting with consumers and knowing what they want. This can be different for the customer and industry firms.
  3. Keep the staff concentrated on the consumer and the business.
  4. Identifying and partnering with collaborators to develop the product.

8. Chief Product Officer and Beyond: The Chief Product Officer (CPO) is an organizational title belonging to an executive who oversees the whole product enterprise. Alternatively, the Chief Product Officer is referred to as the VP of the product or the head of the product. The Chief Product Officer is responsible for the strategic direction of the product. It typically covers product vision, product innovation, product design, product growth, project management, and product promotion. In several tech firms, this role also accounts for production, packaging, and procurement.

Responsibilities :

  1. Driving the Product Manager organization, managing Product Manager administrators, and mentoring their team
  2. Creating a vision and plan for the whole Product Manager organization
  3. Marketing and evangelization of goods from idea to launch
  4. Analysis contributing to informed decision-making around the company

2. Is product management a good career?

If you’ve ever considered a product management career, you’re not alone. To get Product management experience, its positions are increasingly in demand, with high wages and abundant potential for expansion. Product management ranks fifth in the list of the best jobs in America, India, and many other countries, with more than 11,000 work openings open.

Since product management is such an interdisciplinary position, many product managers start a career in product management from a different background. That’s excellent news if you’re interested in switching from another area to a product manager’s job.

3. Benefits of Career in this field

They are responsible for identifying the features and capabilities of the product, as well as the long-term vision to improve and develop it. The position requires technological expertise, a deep understanding of the competition, and good business instincts. Most product managers are also actively active in the creation of marketing campaigns and budgets for their products.

This wide range of duties is what brings many workers to the field—a few other jobs in any company require exposure to too many diverse facets of the sector.


Interested to learn all about Product Management from the best minds in the industry? Check out our Product Management Certification. This 6-month-long program takes place online through live instructor-led sessions. It is the only program in India that offers the ‘Bring Your Own Product (BYOP)’ feature so that learners can build their product idea into a full-blown product, and go through an entire Product Development lifecycle. Not only this, but this is the only program in India with a curriculum that conforms to the 5i Framework. Post completion, learners receive a joint certification from the Indian Institute of Management, Indore, and Jigsaw Academy. 

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