Product Managers Are Unicorns

What’s rare and wonderful?

Product managers are unicorns.

What does that mean?

There are two aspects to our unicornity, to coin a phrase:

  • The numbers
  • The role itself

First of all, let’s look at some numbers. There are almost always fewer product managers in a company than any other role except CEO. There are more VPs than product managers in most product companies. There are five times as many developers, minimum. There are often 10-20 times as many salespeople.

This means that in our nature, we are statistical outliers. Like unicorns.

But there’s more.

And it’s related to “what makes a good product manager.”

In this podcast I mostly explore the latter point, especially as it related to defining what makes “a great product manager” and if you can test or screen for that.

The original tweet that got me started on this episode

John Cutler (@johncutlefish on Twitter) tweeted this observation a few weeks ago:

The discussion led me down the path that resulted in this episode.

Links and articles

I mentioned two great books in this episode, How To Measure Anything, by Douglas W. Hubbard, and Decisive, by Chip and Dan Heath. Definitely check them out if you haven’t already. (By the way, I have another podcast episode that includes nine more recommended books if you want to fill your product manager bookshelf/Kindle.)

Don’t forget to subscribe

If you want to help me out, and more importantly, help other product managers find and enjoy this podcast, please subscribe on your podcast system of choice. And consider giving me a review on iTunes or “starring” the episode on your player. It helps other people find the podcast, and makes me a little happier as well. I might even read your review in an upcoming episode.