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Helping others see

For a long time, whenever someone outside the industry who has no clue about what product management is would ask me to explain what I do, I would tell them that I identify problems and solve problems.

However, recently, I've started to think in a different way.

People solve the problems that they see. When they see a problem at a superficial level, then they solve it at a superficial level. Like when a doctor prescribes paracetamol for a headache without understanding what is causing that headache.

Product Managers often get requests from customers, from other people in the company, from the CEO, on what they need to be building. These ideas don't come out of thin air. They come from the level of understanding of a problem that these people coming up with the ideas have.

That level of understanding usually turns out to be at a very superficial level.

Hence, the job of a Product Manager becomes to help all these people see the true extent and causes of the problems. When that is achieved, all of these people will come up with great ideas that could solve the problems.

In short, the job of a product manager is to help others see the reality as it exists.

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