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Am I really a Project Manager?

August 3rd, 2010

When I started my job search I was looking for opportunities with a few titles, including:

  • Project Manager
  • Business Analyst

I don’t have  a PMP but I had enough hours that I could have taken the test… just didn’t want to put the time into it, even though most of the job postings talked about getting the certification.

A funny thing happened in my job search, though… when doing searches on a particular job board for “project manager” I came across, just by chance, a title that was totally new to me: PRODUCT manager.

As I dug deeper I found that a product manager more appropriately described my experience, and what I loved to do.  I defined a product manager as the “mini CEO”… that is, the person who had P&L responsbility for a particular product, or product line.  This was the person who had somewhat complete control over the product and had to have their fingers in many pots (development, project management, strategic planning, competitive analysis, customer and delivery aspects, etc.).

This was what I really wanted, but I hadn’t known it beforehand.

I enjoy project management and have a lot of respect for project managers.  I can say the same thing about business analysis.

But I was more of a product manager than anything else (haven’t you seen that in my own business ventures?).

Thank goodness I learned that, eventually, from a job board (of all places!).

How about you? Have you been focused on a handful of job titles to the point where you are not thinking about what you really should be looking at? (of course, if you haven’t thought of it yet, the answer is probably NO, unless you feel like the titles you are looking at are incomplete or, for some reason, off).

2 Comments »

2 responses to “Am I really a Project Manager?”

  1. Very nice. This was not a phrase I’ve used in my job search, but I’m going to try it and its big brother, Product Executive. Thanks.

    Peter

  2. Mary Lou Hely says:

    I do use “Product Manager” in my job title. Unfortunately it hasn’t produced the kind of leads I was hoping for. Mostly I got product manager postings with high tech companies, engineering skills required. Not my thing.