These are the skills I look for in a Product Manager
I’ve been at Telstra for two and a half years and what a journey it has been. My first job was as a Product Manager, today I’m the General Manager of Product Experience and Operations.
In my role, I lead a team of Product Managers, and our primary focus is to identify and deliver customer experience improvements to our home broadband customers.
This spans across multiple customer touchpoints such as; when customers join Telstra, when they move home and the migration to the nbn. We also prevent and resolve issues to ensure that customers’ connections are not interrupted.
Besides being able to work with a great team, one of the best things about working here is that there is always something new and exciting to learn, particularly because we’re transforming into a world-class technology company.
So if you want to join us as a Product Manager, here is what you need to know.
The role of a Product Manager at Telstra
Product Managers have end-to-end responsibility for the customer in a number of different ways. These include:
– How the product presents in the market by way of offers and proposition
– How the customer purchases their product with us, such as online
– How the billing presents to the customer
– The relationship and experience that the customer has with us throughout their lifecycle
– Development of new products such as the Telstra Gateway Frontier and new nbn technologies
– Short and long-term profit and loss projections of the portfolio
What an average day looks like
The key thing to call out here is how dynamic the day is and that every day is different. Given the broad scope of our portfolios and an expectation of end-to-end management, anything could drop into our diaries.
My team is particularly focused on product and process improvement. The methodology that my team normally follows is the DMAIC approach (Define, Measure, Analyse, Improve & Control) within the Lean Six Sigma framework. This means we do not make decisions without quantification of data, and use that data and insight to drive the solution.
Do you need to have technical knowledge?
In my team, the expectation is technical… to a degree. They need to understand what a frontline agent is expected to do and how the decisions and changes they make impacts the agent and frontline.
A lot of IT changes come from the product team and having a relatively technical understanding of what you are asking for and how to interpret a business requirement document is important to ensure that the right solution is delivered.
Having said this, there are other teams with Product Managers who are more focused on campaign execution and their level of technical understanding does not need to be as significant.
Other important skills you’ll need
- Commercial: This is not a finance skill but they need to have the ability to understand how their decisions have an impact on the portfolio commercially. Also, some basic business casing skills are preferred
- Data and insights: Most of our decisions and changes are driven from the data and insights created. Whilst not being expected to be able to pull the data themselves, they need to know how to ask the right questions to derive the right insights
- Go to market: An ability to take a change to market
Why do you think Product Managers should consider a career with us?
There’s just so much opportunity for Product Managers at Telstra. The roles, responsibilities and portfolios are so diverse, meaning there’s always something new to learn, see, do and experience…and that’s just within the Product team.