One of the aspects of Product Management that can be really hard for people to internalize and adjust to is just how thankless the job can be at times. When things are going badly, the Product Manager is almost always the first person to shoulder the blame — your requirements weren’t clear, the strategy wasn’t well-articulated, the documentation wasn’t sufficient, you didn’t provide marketing or sales with the proper positioning…stop me if you’ve heard these before. And, when things are going really well, your role winds up falling into the background — nobody notices the facilitating and maneuvering, planning and plotting that backlog, nailing the estimates and schedule.
But it’s not just the fact that there’s no party thrown in your honor, nor that you’re the first one pilloried during the management meeting following a failed release. It’s the fact that all of this negative attention can seep into into our own self-image, and can turn slowly and insidiously into something known as “imposter syndrome”.