Using Too Much Generic Language
Everyone that has ever written a CV has been guilty of using cliché statements like, I am a fantastic team player, but the problem with this is that its too generic and doesnt hold any substance. The hiring manager cant just take your word for it, and wants to see actual evidence of your performance and skills.
What to do:
Try to keep the generic statements to a minimum, and focus your attention more on highlighting your achievements and past performances. Rather than simply listing all of your tasks and responsibilities for each job title, you should also go into more detail of how you performed.
A successful project, an amazing idea that generated more revenue, exceptional customer service these are all great examples to provide that would add credibility to your CV and prove that you are not just all talk and no action.
An achievement consists of three components:
- Using a particular skill.
- Carrying out a particular activity.
- Getting a measurable / quantifiable result / benefit.
The simplest means of doing this is to employ the What?/So What? formula, a two-step process that asks:
- What did I do?
- So what? What was the quantifiable result? ~ International Hellenic University
Understanding Your Product Value
Here’s how to think about “value” as a product manager: product managers aren’t commodities like flour, rice, or sugar. Product managers cannot be traded for one another, and every product manager is expected to have their own perspective on the world.
People sell commodities by using spec sheets because they can be traded for each other.
When you sell yourself, you should never sell yourself with a spec sheet. You shouldn’t try to compete against others based on your years of experience or your educational background or your list of skills.
You are not a commodity. You are a differentiated product.
Think about what makes you unique. Figure out what excites you as well as what you do better than anyone else you know. Perhaps you have a strong technical background that makes it easier for you to liaise with the software engineering team better than product managers who do not have that kind of experience.
Consider what pain points you solve that others cant solve. Remember, products solve pain.
Next up, you need to identify which markets you fit into. After all, all products must achieve product/market fit.
If you’re interested in learning the skills to land a great product manager job, then check out our product management certifications.
Product Manager Resume Header: Your First Impression
Resume headers are the first things that hiring managers are going to look at. Think of them as your first impression. Your header should include the following:
- Your Name
- Email address
- City and state/province
You dont have to include your full address just yet for security purposes. Its completely acceptable for you to list down just your city and state.
Its also a good idea to put in the link to your Linkedin profile. Its an extra step but it will give the hiring manager a better context of who you are, personally and professionally. If you have a website, go ahead and include it as well.
As for your summary or resume objective, try to keep everything in one paragraph. Your paragraph should sound eager and enthusiastic, not boring and copy-pasted.
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How To Use Our Product Manager Resume Guide
I’ve hired other product managers and reviewed thousands of product management resumes from job seekers across geographies, industries, and experience levels.
This guide is the culmination of my experience both as a product leader and recruiter. With it, my hope is to take away some of the pain that you might face in your job search.
I have crafted this post from the perspective of an employer rather than from the perspective of a product manager job seeker. Every employer has different needs and looks for different traits and skills. For that reason, I’ve provided you with a flexible framework for how to showcase your true value proposition as a product.
That way, you can demonstrate your unique value in a crowded marketplace of product talent.
In doing so, I’ll provide examples of how to position your product manager skills . However, I won’t provide a resume template for you to fill out. Thats because product managers are products, and every product has a unique go-to-market strategy.
At best, when you look at a resume template, you should treat it as a product manager resume sample. In other words, you should never copy someone elses go-to-market strategy, because it wont fit you well.
You shouldn’t feel constrained in copying any particular resume format. Too often, I see candidates worrying about the following:
None of that matters in a resume.
That means that you’ll be prioritizing.
Giving Too Much Information
Providing too much information on a CV is not going to help the hiring manager to quickly see that youre the right person for the job. The employer doesnt need to see your life story, and although you may have all the right skills and qualifications, they are going to struggle to find them hidden between all the irrelevant information.
What to do:
Your CV needs to be focused on the company and the role, and by using the job advert you should be able to extract all of the relevant information in order to tailor your CV. Check to see which specific skills have been requested, qualifications and experience, and then construct your CV around this vital information.
Another great way to find out more about the company is to check out their website, Facebook page, and any other social media platform they use. See what type of customers they have, what product or service they offer, and get a feel for what they are looking to achieve.
The employer wants to see a relevant and focused CV, and not a generic one. There is no need to list absolutely everything youve ever achieved if it is not relevant and most likely wont be!
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Creating Your Own Product Manager Cv Template
If you decide to create your own CV template and layout for your information, you are going to struggle when up against so many other professional CVs. Everything has to be perfect the layout, the font, font size, headings, paper quality, colour, spacing, and so on. It wont matter how amazing your credentials are if they are not very well presented.
Remember, an employer will only spend a few seconds skimming through your CV and could decide to reject it based on the presentation. With other qualified applications to choose from that are professionally presented, you can understand why presentation is so important.
What to do:
Use a CV template!
As simple as this sounds, you no longer have to struggle with the task of creating your own CV layout when there are literally hundreds to choose from online. Some CV templates are even designed specifically for a particular role or industry, which makes choosing one even easier.
All it takes is just a few minutes to decide which one youd like, and then you can focus the time youve saved into writing a great CV. Dont forget, you can also edit the CV template if you want, to ensure it fully meets your needs.
The Ultimate Product Manager Resume Guide
Article originally published Product Manager HQ.
An outstanding resume is absolutely critical for any product manager. After all, product managers are products for us to successfully sell ourselves as products, we must signal our value, and resumes are one of the most effective ways to signal value.
Many product manager resume guides focus on prescriptive outcome-oriented advice.
In other words, many guides will tell you which buzzwords to use in your resume, or what spacing and font you should use, or what side projects you should tackle, or which classes you should take.
I disagree with that approach, because product management is fundamentally about processes and frameworks, not about outcomes.
This guide is different because its framework-oriented.
Ill walk you through the process of creating an effective resume that authentically displays your true value proposition as a product, so that you can demonstrate your unique value in a crowded marketplace of product talent.
Because this guide is framework-oriented and not outcome-oriented, it will look very different from other resume guides.
For example, I wont provide a resume template that you can fill out. Thats because product managers are products, and every product has a unique go-to-market strategy.
In other words, you should never copy someone elses go-to-market strategy, because it wont fit you well.
Ill caution you upfront: its not easy to craft a truly good resume.
So, lets dive in!
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Associate Product Manager Resume
Associate Product Managers assist Product Managers by doing market research, gathering product data, and analyzing customer research. It can differ from company to company, but the main idea is that an Associate Product Manager takes on a more supportive role.
Often, its a role that beginner Product Managers apply for to start their PM career.
How Do You Write Your Professional Experiences A Product Manager Resume
Connecting the dots looking backward.
Steve jobs elaborate on the fact that you cannot connect the dots looking forward and that you can only connect the dots looking backward.
We have in the following guide broken the sample product manager resume into fragments/steps. The steps should facilitate designing your product manager resume in order.
The ‘Professional Experience’ section is considered the backbone of the resume. It is an important section as it tells the recruiter how you used your skillset to benefit the organization.
In fact, you start with a list of all possible contributions you made across your career and the experiences you had in the process.
Step 1: Master CV
Your Master CV essential contains information across your career – beginning from your achievements at school to your extra-curricular to your work profiles.
In fact, your Master CV is not restricted to your target profile, it reflects your progression across your career spanning:
- Your name and contact details
- Your responsibilities/contributions across all job profiles
- Your achievements corresponding to the same
- targets you have achieved
- metrics reached
Step 2: Starting the Product Manager Resume
First, remove crazy instances from your MasterCV that do not reflect your contribution in the field of product management.
What should be removed from a product manager resume? The dance lessons you took when you were 5.
Step 3: Drawing cause-effect relationships
- Your contribution
- Corresponding Achievement
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Product Manager Resume Skills Section
Product Manager Resume Keywords
Your skills should reflect keywords from your contributions. To make this easier, you may simply copy your groups as your primary product manager skills – key skills which appear in the first line.
For example, “Product Management” is the primary key skill as per the example and it is represented at the very beginning of the key skills section.
You should remember to use product management keywords, especially the ones in the target job description.
Further, from the highlighted terms in the product manager resume, it is easy to note the key skills:
- Product Overhaul
- Developing Cases for New Products/Features
- Developing Pricing Framework
- Developing Strategies for Product Launches
- Developing Value Propositions
- Managing Risk Through the Product Cycle
|Stakeholder Management||Customer Segmentation|
Product manager resume keywords should be included in your product manager resumes as per the relevance of your expertise and job description.
Choosing The Best Resume Format For A Product Manager
The most commonly used chronological resume format works well for job seekers in almost any occupation, particularly if their work history has followed a linear path in a series of employee positions. In that resume section, progressive job experience and accomplishments are organized by employer / workplace in reverse order from most recent to earliest dates. It would likely be a good fit for most product manager job applicants who already have experience in the same field or other areas of business or management.
Alternative resume formats are sometimes appropriate for those new to the workforce or changing careers, or those with a more varied occupational background. That includes some self-employed professionals with a project-based background well suited to a functional resume format. Other functional resumes emphasize specialized technical skills, rather than work history. In some instances, a hybrid work history makes sense in adapting chronological and functional elements.
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Examples Of Soft Skills To Include On Your Resume
When it comes to soft skills, these are bullets that exemplify your skills as a leader and/or communicator, such as your ability to collaborate. Collaboration is used a lot in these bullet points! Heres a solid list of examples for soft skills:
- Identified operational and support requirements and facilitated their implementation
- Communicated with other cross-functional areas, sharing product plans, identifying possible issues and concerns, and collaborating to address them
- Facilitated and supported product training and launches
- Contributed to broader technology strategy gave feedback to technical teams building products on top of the infrastructure
- Discussed the architecture/technical decisions made in the squad
- Interfaced with the rest of the technology organization to understand opportunities, requirements, and priorities to ensure the right focus of the team
Soft skill bullets are not easily quantifiable. Hence, verbs like identified, communicated, facilitated, contributed, and discussed are often used.
Unlike what many believe, soft skills form the backbone of your personal brand and story. As a Product Manager, you should be very good with communication and teamwork and therefore these skills are as important, if not more, as your hard skills.
What Is A Skills Chart And Why Do You Need One
A skills chart is by far the most important component of your Product Manager resume. A skills chart is literally a chart on your resume which lists relevant skills. You need to have one on your Product Manager resume because the ATS works on a keyword algorithm so without your skills chart, your resume may not make it to the eyes of the recruiter. Your skills chart will also let your recruiter know that you are a relevant candidate they want to schedule an interview with.
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Assistant Product Manager Resume
Why this resume works
- Especially if you’re just starting your career, your assistant product manager resume needs to match the product manager job description.
- Usually, you just have to tailor your work experience, skills section, and objective or summary .
- In your skills section, include a list of four to eight keywords you’d feel confident talking about in an interview.
Related Resume Guides
The Personal Information Section
This section is not the place to try and impress. Just make sure you get your details across in as few words as possible and avoid mistakes.
Notice how the above example is extremely clean and easy to read. Follow these tips to achieve the same:
- Use bigger font for your name than for the rest of the section to make it stand out
- Include your name, email address, phone number, city/county you live in
- Ideally include a link to your LinkedIn profile
- Title this section. Its not necessary in this type of layout, so save the space
- Include a street address, its unnecessary and unsafe
- Include a photo, date of birth or gender, unless specifically requested to do so
- Dont label each piece of information e.g email:, tel:, etc. Its obvious what they are, so save the space
- Link to personal or portfolio websites here, you can do that lower down
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Resume Education Example: The Foundation For Your Career
Product managers come from a variety of backgrounds, so be proud of yours. While product managers usually have a bachelors degree, that degree does not have to be in a specific field. Your marketing degree is just as valuable as someone elses software engineering degree.
Even if you dont have a business degree, you can still have a career in product management. If you feel you are lacking skills in one area, or want to boost your desirability as a candidate, colleges and universities are beginning to offer product manager certifications and courses. One skill you should add to your resume is coding.
Technical product managers are in high demand according to Forbes, so if you have taken coding classes, this is the place to list them. If you dont have any coding experience, consider taking a class to make your resume even more impressive.
You dont need an MBA, but if you have one, or any other masters degree, you can drop your high school diploma from this section. Do include any certifications you have earned.
Consider adding a certification and affiliation section only if you have space. You can include one or two in your education section.
2004-2006 NYU, Master of Science in Electronic Engineering NY, NY
2000-2004 Brown University, Bachelor of Science in Engineering Providence, RI
Sample Product Manager Resume
Average Rating for this template
However, many people hesitate to apply for jobs because they dont have the proper resume. A good resume will get you on your way to success. Lets show you how you can write a Product Manager resume that will stand out from the crowd. By the end, with the right techniques, templates and advice for successful product management, you should have a job-winning resume in your hand!
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