Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Marketing Interview Questions for Product Managers

Over the years, I've interviewed dozens of product managers and marketing directors and I've fine-tuned the following list of interview questions to help me identify top talent. My goal has always been to conduct an interview that gives an opportunity for the best candidates to stand-out from the crowd. So, if you are a VP/Director Product and you are looking to build a team of great product managers, here is the list of interview questions you'll want to ask. And, if you're a Product Manager coming to one of my interviews, you can't say you didn't have an opportunity to be prepared.

NOTE: I removed the general questions I would normally ask a candidate to guage their knowledge of our products, company, and industry or assess their fit with our culture and determine salary requirements. There are plenty of resources available online for those questions? These interview questions are specific to marketing and product management roles:

PRODUCT MANAGEMENT

  • How many years of direct product management experience do you possess?
  • Talk me through how you’ve successfully managed an entire product life-cycle from start to finish?
  • Give me a specific example of how you've innovated with a product or service that you've managed? What was the business result? How could you have improved results?
  • What is your single, greatest achievement? What significant, long-term impact was achieved? How could you have done better?
  • If you could manage any product, from any industry, from any time, which would you choose and why? What would you change?
PROJECT MANAGEMENT

  • Give me an example of how you’ve defined and managed a development project to a successful conclusion?
  • Have you ever had a project go over schedule or budget? Describe an occasion where you didn't anticipate an obstacle you faced?
  • What is primary difference between Waterfall and Agile development philosophies?
  • In your opinion, which leads to a more successful project: creating an MRD/PRD or producing customer case studies and user-persona's?
  • Tell me about a time you've had to manage several important, often conflicting, priorities to achieve a goal. How did you stay organized?
BUSINESS STRATEGY
  • Tell me about a time when you’ve identified an opportunity or recommended tactical strategy to management?
  • What systems, tools, and procedures do you use to support your product management efforts?
  • Have you ever had to make a critical decision on the spot? What was the decision and result? How did you go about making the decision?
  • Describe your analytical approach in to solving a problem or answering a complex question?
PRODUCT MARKETING
  • Tell me about three products or brands you admire most, and why? What do you think is the key to their success?
  • Describe for me your favorite product’s key brand message, value proposition, target audience, and positioning statement?
  • What thought-process do you go through or strategies do you employ to set pricing? Have you ever set the wrong price?
  • Describe your background and experience in performing competitive analyses, customer surveys, and market research?
  • What tools have you used to educate sales, public relations, customer service, and technical support about your product's key features and benefits?
LEADERSHIP & TEAMWORK

  • What personal qualities do you possess that enable you to lead others? What personal characteristics have you found hurt your ability to lead?
  • Give me an example of a situation or decision you've had to make where you took an unpopular stand? What was the end-result?
  • Describe a significant problem you've encountered recently and how you dealt with it?
  • What is the most effective way you’ve found to gain the support of your co-workers, peers, and project team members?
  • Describe a conflict in workplace where your diplomacy skills were tested? How did you handle the situation?

44 comments:

Jeremy said...

As a recruiter for marketing and product management professionals, I will have to agree this list is spot on!

Alison Covarrubias said...

Thank you! This is a really helpful list of questions. I plan to use them in my upcoming interviews this week. :)

Rakesh Saha said...

These questions will really help me for my tomorrow's interview.

Thanks a lot.

John Wodden said...

This awesome blog is obviously interesting and besides informative. I have found a bunch of handy things out of this amazing blog. I’d love to go back again soon.
Cheers!
Consumer Market Research

Chandrika Madapudi said...

Thanks for your informative article. Your post helped me a lot in understanding the career prospects in search engine optimization. SEO Training in Chennai | Digital Marketing Course in Chennai

Nikitha Darshan said...

Wow combination of various questions for interviews. Thanks for sharing.
Melbourne SEO Services | SEO Agency Melbourne

Arjun kumar said...

Informative post.Thanks for sharing.
Selenium Training in Chennai | Software Testing Training in chennai

Jhon Abraham said...

Thank you for sharing in this article, I can learn a lot and could also be a reference, I hope to read the next your article updates.
DOTNET Training in Chennai | dotnet training institutes in Chennai

Nikshitha S said...

Thanks for sharing this informative content that guided me to know the details about the training offered in different technology.
digital marketing course in chennai | digital marketing training

Andrew Son said...

Wonderful post!!Seo is categorized as three types, here keywords in the sense approximately search result of a word averagely over a month. On-page optimizations means what are the changes which we are doing in our own site is called on-page optimizations. Off-page optimization means it refers to the activities that are outside our websites.Thank you..!!
Regards,
seo training institute in Chennai | seo training

Nandhini said...

I have read this content it is very nice with unique information and keep updating us.
SEO Training in Chennai | best seo training institute in Chennai

Rasool Bevi said...

Thanks for your informative article. Your post helped me a lot in understanding the career prospects in search engine optimization.
SEO Training in Chennai|SEO Training

https://www.bravetechnologies.in said...

Thanks for your great information! Its interesting and informative.erp software in chennai|erp software solution chennai

Melisa said...

Informative interview question :) Thanks for sharing...
Regards,
Digital Marketing Course|Digital Marketing Course in Chennai|Digital Marketing Training in Chennai

Amirtha rao said...

Awesome post :)
Regards,
Best seo training in chennai|SEO Training Center in Chennai

Priya Gupta said...

Thanks for this post. This post makes a great point about focusing your efforts. mechanical engineering colleges in punjab

siva siva said...

Thanks for your great information. Sign up and Register Your Events Today!!!!!!!
College Events Registration | College Events, Festivals, Workshops, Symposiums, Conference Registration Websites | Upcoming Events List

for IT the said...

I have read your blog its very attractive and impressive. I like it your blog.

Digital Marketing Company in Chennai Digital Marketing Agency

SEO Company in India SEO Services in India

Digital Marketing Company in Chennai

venkatweetz said...

Very Nice Blog I like the way you explained these things. I’ve been looking for ways to improve my website and overall rankings.I hope your future article will help me further

Skartec Web Solutions said...

Thanks for sharing this with us it is a worth read. xcellent post!!! Digital marketing training provides students with meaning skills to promote a business in digital age. This training covers search engine optimization, SEM, social media marketing, online reputation management, etc.

Digital Marketing Training in Chennai | Digital Marketing Course in Chennai | Digital Marketing Training Institute in Chennai | SEO Training in Chennai

Siva Seo said...

I have read your blog its very Interesting. Thanks for sharing.
best erp software providers in chennai | leading erp software development companychennai

Evelin Harriet said...

Nice Blog. Thank you for Sharing. Enterprise Resource Planning Software Solutions in Chennai. For more details contact us info@bravetechnologies.in
erp in Chennai | erp software providers chennai

sivanesan said...

Nice blog. Thank you for sharing. The information you shared is very effective for learners I have got some important suggestions from it. erp in chennai.

venkatweetz said...

Very Nice Blog I like the way you explained these things. I’ve been looking for ways to improve my website and overall rankings.I hope your future article will help me further.Take SEO Training in Chennai to mould yourself.

Brave Technologies said...

Excellent post. I have read your blog it's very interesting and informative. Keep sharing.
cloud erp in chennai

Siva Seo said...

Thank you for this valuable information. I have got some important suggestions from it. I'm working in Brave Technologies Private Limited. web development company in chennai

Siva Nesan said...

Thank you for your nice post. It is really useful. cashew nuts retailer in india | suppliers & exporters in india

Rohi Sharma said...

I wanted to thank you for this great read!! I definitely enjoying every little bit of it I have you bookmarked to check out new stuff you post. medical tourism in india

Fuzzy International said...

The best thing is that your blog really informative thanks for your great information!
cashew nuts suppliers and exporters in dubai
A4 paper suppliers and exporters in dubai
onion suppliers and exporters in dubai
potato suppliers and exporters in dubai
spices&grains suppliers and exporters in dubai

katrinahelen said...

Nice article, I loved it. Thanks for sharing and keep sharing.
personalrekrutierung

katrinahelen said...

Informative and impressive. Keep Updating
jobbörse südwestfalen

adaliadella said...

thanks for the useful post
Internet Marketing Dienstleistungen

ALINAAMEL said...

The website is looking bit flashy and it catches the visitors eyes. A design is pretty simple .
Webdesign Deutschland

ALINAAMEL said...

The website is looking bit flashy and it catches the visitors eyes. A design is pretty simple .
Webdesign Deutschland

lia Laura said...

Thanks for sharing this.
Post graduation education in germany

katrinahelen said...

awsome post
Netzwerk jobs

deepti said...

I agree your blog., Its very useful to us, I referred to my friends also. Thanks for sharing.
Cloud Computing Project Center in Chennai | Cloud Computing Project Center in Velachery

Words Doctorate said...


I read this article. I think You put a lot of effort to create this article. I appreciate your work.
thesis Writing Service

katrinahelen said...

really good
jobbörse südwestfalen

mohd Sameer said...

https://stitchclothes.com here we stitch clothes as per your design and selection

Jahan Murugassan said...

Needed to compose you a very little word to thank you yet again regarding the nice suggestions you’ve contributed here.
white label website builder

mobile website builder

Words Doctorate said...


I read this article. I think You put a lot of effort to create this article. I appreciate your work.
Dissertation Writing Services

Zilikoo France said...

Well written nice article. For Digital Marketing Training in Chennai | SEO Training in Chennai contact www.aortadigitalservices.com

impress bss said...

Thank you for sharing valuable information
Digital Marketing company in chennai
Web design company in chennai
Web development company in chennai