Practical Guide to Being a Product Manager - Part 2: Communication
Product Management Team
3 min read
January 26, 2023
Effective communication is essential for product management success. In part 2 of our Practical Guide to Being a Product Manager series, we will provide tips on how you can communicate with stakeholders and share your work products.
As a product manager, you will work with various stakeholders, each with their own needs and priorities. It is essential to understand the needs of each stakeholder, to be an effective communicator and better collaborator.
Before we outline guidelines for communication with various project stakeholders, we’d like to note a common theme to be kept in mind when communicating across the team: routine communication.
Communication should be fluid in that key points of information should be provided as they happen: this can be directly or indirectly in the form of notifications from ticket updates, for example. There should also be set forums or scheduled periodic updates to share project information, ensuring there is sufficient ‘birds-eye-view’ overall project red/amber/green status, as well as finer project communication eg a specific development ticket is blocked due to pending access to a 3rd party software.
Communicating with the UX Team
Effective communication with the UX team is crucial to ensure that both the product manager and the UX team are on the same page about the product vision. Regular meetings with designers responsible for features they are working on, and communicating research, vision, and requirements, will ensure that the design team understands the objectives of the features and can design accordingly.
Communicating with the Development Team
Effective communication with the development team is essential for ensuring that the product is built to the correct specifications and within the given timeframe. Hold regular meetings with the development team, keep them informed of any changes or updates to the product vision, and provide detailed documentation of product requirements to help them prioritize their tasks effectively.
Communicating with the Product Team
Effective communication with the product team is crucial to ensure everyone is on the same page about the product vision and requirements. Regular team meetings and status updates can keep the team informed about progress and gather feedback on the product. Additionally, ensure that the product team can access customer feedback, user research, and other relevant data.
Communicating with external stakeholders
As a product manager, it's also vital to communicate with external stakeholders such as customers, partners, and investors. You should understand their goals and tailor your communication accordingly. Use regular meetings, calls, and presentations to keep these stakeholders informed about the product's progress and to gather feedback. Be mindful of their time and the level of detail in updates provided to them, prioritizing the key items that they need to know.
Communicating your work products
Communicating your work products is an essential aspect of product management, in addition to status updates. It allows stakeholders to understand the progress of the actual product, as well as to gather feedback and insights.
Sharing status reports is an essential aspect of communicating your work products. Reports should be clear, concise, and easy to understand. It should include visuals such as charts and diagrams to help communicate key points and should have the right level of detail depending on who the report is for.
Delivering presentations is another aspect of communicating your work products and project status. Tailor the content to your audience and use visuals to help communicate key points. Practice the presentation beforehand to ensure that you are comfortable with the material and can deliver it effectively.
In general, over-communication is always better than under-communication: transparency with overall communication can only result in the team being more aligned and on the same page regarding the project progress and can march together to successfully meet milestones.
As a full-service product design agency, Perpetual offers end-to-end product development solutions, including UX design, software development, and staff augmentation. We understand the importance of effective communication in product management and can help you navigate the complex world of product management. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help take your product to the next level.