Product Management & Running are synonyms!
I’m an avid runner & I train for triathlons.
I am also a Product Manager working in the Gaming world.
Here are five ways in which my hobby as a runner helps me be a better Product Manager and vice versa.
- Vision & strategy
Every Product arises when there’s a need or a problem to be resolved or a sector needs disruption. That reason becomes the vision for the long-term sustainability of the Product. Strategy changes over time.
On the other hand, runners aim higher. Be the next race, next ultramarathon, half-marathon, desert marathon, Boston marathon, Run in the Mountains, various terrains & so on.
A clear vision based on our capabilities & training with a mentor is very essential & itself becomes our vision. A runner always has a strategy for every race based on the various factors beyond the distance.
2. Both a Product Manager & a Runner is obsessed with data.
As PMs, most of our decisions are done after digging into the data, analyzing the patterns in various tools like Google Analytics, Amplitude, MoEngage & so on.
Similarly, we runners look into Strava data recorded, various range of smartwatches, Google Fit, Nike Runner & the GPS data.
As PMs, we do retrospect the previous releases & the adaption rate. We keep learning from situations encountered so that we see good numbers & fewer uninstalls.
As a runner, we always compare our performances with our previous ones to decide the PB (Personal Best) in terms of timing be it a 5k,10k, or a 21k race.
PMs need to be very clear about the roadmap & the priorities for the quarter. The roadmap should tell a story of what you expect to do to achieve your goals.
Runners usually prep for the competitions for the next 3 months.
5. Iterate & learn
Learning the RCA (Root cause Analysis) of every decision or troubleshooting scenario we gain experience in every decision to be made, & its after-effects, also its repercussions.
After many years of running and racing, I have built up experience of what works and what doesn’t and this is invaluable to consistently and efficient delivery. In a world full of quantitative data, experience is a valuable source of data and insight.
6. Plan better
From planning the sprint goals, sprint duration, agile methodology, shaping up a product goes through tons of planning.
Be it pre-race or post-race, we know the hacks of what works like a charm. From planning the nutrition to the post-recovery, we plan every move.
And now time to lace up my trainers and go for a run!
P.S. For more similarities: Do check out more similarities on my LinkedIn posts