Product Management

12th April 2022 1 By indiafreenotes

Product Management is the business process of planning, developing, launching, and managing a product or service. It includes the entire lifecycle of a product, from ideation to development to go to market. Product managers are responsible for ensuring that a product meets the needs of its target market and contributes to the business strategy, while managing a product or products at all stages of the product lifecycle. Software product management adapts the fundamentals of product management for digital products.

Role of Product Managers

Product managers are responsible for managing a company’s product line on a day-to-day basis. As a result, product managers are critical in both driving a company’s growth, margins, and revenue. They are responsible for the business case, conceptualizing, planning, product development, product marketing, and delivering products to their target market. Depending on the company size, industry, and history, product management has a variety of functions and roles. Frequently there is Profit and Loss (P&L) responsibility as a key metric for evaluating product manager performance.


Product managers analyze information including customer research, competitive intelligence, industry analysis, trends, economic signals, and competitive activity, as well as documenting requirements, setting product strategy, and creating the roadmap. Product managers align across departments within their company including product design and development, marketing, sales, customer support, and legal.

Product management was born during the Great Depression when a 27-year-old marketer proposed the idea of a “Brand man” an employee to manage a specific product rather than a traditional business role. Since the 1930s, the continued success of this function has led to the growth of product organizations across industries and geographies.

1931: Neil H. McElroy, a marketing manager at Proctor & Gamble, writes a 300-page memo on the need for “brand men,” who manage specific products.

Late 1930s: McElroy is an advisor at Stanford University, where he influences two young visionaries: Bill Hewlett and David Packard.

1943-1993: Hewlett-Packard sustains 50 years of 20% Y/Y growth by implementing the “brand man” philosophy in their new company.

Late 1940s: Toyota develops JIT manufacturing principles, later adopted by Hewlett-Packard.

1953: Toyota develops the kanban method.

1970s: Tech companies in the U.S. start developing lightweight processes, in opposition to cumbersome processes that emerged from manufacturing industries.

1980s: Developing agile processes, combined with greater acceptance of “Brand management” roles, takes hold in many technology and software companies.

2001: The Agile Manifesto is written, which, in large part, broke down department silos and outdated processes, to make room for a unified product management role.