One of the most common questions we get from aspiring and new PMs is - what do you recommend I do to ramp up on the craft? Here, my friends, is what we recommend (in priority order, of course).
There are a couple of good sources of product content and both have active Slack communities for real-time discussions / guidance as well.
You might also like my Twitter list of product thought leaders. I find it helpful to keep tabs on their latest thinking / what's top of mind for them.
My favorites so far in terms of covering core concepts of good product management:
- Inspired by Marty Cagan
- Lean Product Playbook by Dan Olsen (especially like the idea of separating the problem space from the solution space)
Conferences are a great way to understand what topics are trending in product management and what thought leaders are up to. The two biggest ones I know of are:
Meetups are a good way to meet local product folks and perhaps take a nugget or two back to the office the next day. I can't speak for every city, but since I live in Austin and Ben's in DC (I also lived there for 4 years), here are few worth checking out:
- Austin Product Events calendar (which includes the 3 Meetups I mention below)
- The Product League (they do a great job of partnering with other Meetups to discuss the collaboration between product and other roles like marketing)
- ProductTank Austin (they alternate each month between talks and happy hours)
- ProductCamp Austin (semi-annual unconference where attendees vote on what sessions they want in the morning after rapid 30-second pitches)
- Washington DC
I haven't yet found a ton of podcasts focused solely on product but I do like:
Keep in mind that product management is like golf - you can take some lessons to get started but practice is what makes you really good. If you're not yet operating as a product manager, find ways to try it out:
- Offer to help a PM at your company or local startup with anything - market research, backlog grooming, wireframes, getting user feedback, etc.
- Launch a product you wish existed from scratch - even if it doesn't make any money, you'll have some great experiences to talk about in interviews
Good luck and may the Force be with you!