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Defining Roles of the Product Management Team

by Gabriel Steinhardt  |  
February 15, 2005

The role of a product manager is challenging, complex and often misunderstood.

Across the high-tech industry, the "product manager" title is used in many ways to describe drastically different duties and responsibilities. Diverse interpretations regarding the role of the product manager have created an untenable situation for some, who therefore struggle to define their own role.

Properly defining and structuring the roles and responsibilities of the product management team would enable the team members to be more efficient and productive, leading to better revenues and higher-quality products that meet customer needs.

This article explores the challenges faced by modern high-tech product managers and proposes a solution to formalize and structure the responsibilities and makeup of the product management team.

What's Your Role?

Job titles are important, and the role one plays in an organization is often identified by one's job title. But often this is not the case in the world of product management. The myriad interpretations of product management job titles, especially the product manager title, make it very difficult to ascertain what roles and responsibilities are associated with a specific product management job title.

Ask several product managers what their responsibilities are, and you will get a variety of answers and descriptions. Even if working in the same company and department, they may provide very different perspectives on their position.

Most people accept that "product management" is a term used to describe the sum of diverse activities performed in the interest of delivering a particular product to market. Such a broad definition, used by many companies today, is the root of much grief because it dilutes the professional focus necessary to achieve successful results and allows virtually any product-related task to be assigned to the product manager.

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Gabriel Steinhardt is a principal with Blackblot. For more information, visit

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  • by Allison Lattanze Wed Feb 20, 2008 via web

    Excellent breakdown - thanks for putting all of this into logical order.

  • by amith km Thu Sep 24, 2009 via web

    This is interesting and satisfied topic enjoyed reading it!! please lemme know more about pharmaceutical product management as customers there are not actually the consumers...

  • by IQBAL SHEIKH Fri Feb 19, 2010 via web

    Thanx for giving us such a worthfull information
    it really helped me a lot sir..

  • by edith cherotich maritim Thu Mar 25, 2010 via web

    thanks a lot for this information it has enabled me to learn more about the product management team.will you please also write on how logistics manager and product manager work together to achieve the best in a company

  • by jignesh patel Tue Apr 6, 2010 via web

    thanks to give a such a nice and not complex presentation as it deserve in job .

  • by jay Wed Apr 7, 2010 via web

    its a vnce article.. i realy enjyd nd gt gud knowledge of PMT.

  • by suvarna sawant Thu May 27, 2010 via web

    very interesting piece of information on pmt, want some more info related to pharma sector.

  • by vijay singh Mon Oct 3, 2011 via web

    really very helpful for understanding the various aspects of product management team....

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