Project Manager vs Product Manager

Project vs. Product

Photo by Joshua Rawson-Harris on Unsplash

What does a product manager do?

Photo by Erik Mclean on Unsplash
  • Discovery
  • Setting the product vision
  • Vision communication to key stakeholder(s)
  • Strategic plan development
  • Developing and maintaining the product roadmap

What does a project manager do?

  • Breaking down initiatives (or user stories) into tasks
  • Planning project timelines
  • Allocating project resources
  • Monitoring task completion
  • Communicating progress to stakeholders

Project manager vs. product manager - 5 major differences

Photo by Possessed Photography on Unsplash

It is all about the product for product managers

Varied skillsets can determine success for project and product managers

  • Master research skills — research heavily impacts a decision to build a product that meets user needs and solves pain points
  • Utilize strategic thinking — the product development process of analysis impacts product development and prioritizes activities according to what needs to be delivered first
  • Be business smart — successful product managers understand competitors, and market trends to ensure a product is viable.
  • Planning: Building a detailed project plan is key. It involves thinking about tasks that need to be completed before the project is over, as well as key milestones.
  • Organization: Being organized and keeping track of project elements ensures processes run smoothly and tasks are completed.
  • Time management: Project managers need to use time wisely to ensure that all tasks are delivered within certain deadlines.

Success measures

Scope of work

A day in the life of a project manager/product manager

  • Data analysis
  • Technical trouble-shotting
  • Product development meetings
  • Product backlog management





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