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Product Management Isn't Project Management (Except When It Is)

Toby Rogers
Toby Rogers
Hello fellow punks! 
Welcome to the 46 of you who’ve signed up for this since the last issue I published. It’s great to have you on board. Hopefully you’ll stick with me while I figure out what this newsletter is all about.
Here’s this week’s issue ⬇️

Say Project Manager one more time...
There were a lot of product management vs project management conversations happening on Product Twitter this week.
Firstly, Jeff Gothelf landed in my feed with this 👇
Jeff Gothelf
Product managers ≠ Project Managers
Then I stumbled across this from Sam Higham, who quite rightly says we shouldn’t dismiss the need for good product management skills:
Sam Higham
Product People are starting to be dismissive of good Project Management skills, as though possessing them is some sort of ick.

This is such a terrible anti-pattern. You'll make your job so much harder...stop it.

Good Project Skills are universally helpful.
Then Tobi Otokiti and Bandan Jot Singh added their (pretty similar) thoughts 🧐
Tobi Otokiti
As a #productmanager, you need project management skills.

And by the way, product management is different from project management
Bandan🚀
Product Managers are not Project Managers.

But Product Managers should 100 percent know how to manage projects.

It helps you get big complex multi-dependency jobs done.
So, what’s the story here?
While Jeff’s fortune cookie comment is right, the reality is a lot more nuanced.
Product management is complex and involves keeping the threads together for a lot of different initiatives at the same time. You need to have a baseline set of project management skills if you want to stay in control of what’s going on.
I wrote a blog a few years ago on the differences between product managers and project managers, which I think is still relevant (apart from the “CEO of the product” bit, which I don’t agree with any more) 👇
Product Manager Vs Project Manager — TOBY ROGERS
What I've been reading 📚
This article from 2018 on the Shultz Hour from Better Humans provides a really good structure for making the most of a weekly hour of “thinking time” (something everyone should have in their calendar) 🤔
The Shultz Hour: How 60 Minutes Per Week Can Yield Tremendous Returns | by Mike Sturm | Better Humans
Jason Knight made a really good comment on Twitter this week saying we should be wary of loading 100% of our team’s time because it doesn’t leave any room for manoeuvre. This blog post digs into the same idea in a bit more depth ⏱
I’ve been doing a lot of reading about execution lately (the product kind, not the electric chair kind). This newsletter post from Deb Liu is one of the best things I’ve found so far 👇
What I've been writing ✍️
A thread on how I grew my Twitter following 10x in 200 days by getting involved in the Product Management community:
Toby Rogers 🚀🤘
For product managers, Twitter is far more valuable than LinkedIn.

I grew my following 10x in 200 days and got a ton of interesting opportunities by diving deep into product management Twitter.

Here are 7 things I did 🧵 ⬇️
And a list of my top 10 must-read newsletters (although I probably subscribe to >20):
Toby Rogers 🚀🤘
For product managers, newsletters are some of the best resources to learn from—and not just about product management.

Here are my top 10 must-reads🧵 ⬇️
That’s it! 
See you next week. 
Toby 
The Punk PM 
P.S. Feel free to share this with anyone else you think would find it interesting.
I’m still playing around with ideas for content and format for this newsletter, so I’d love to hear your thoughts. Go ahead and shoot me an email with ways you think I can make it better.
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Toby Rogers
Toby Rogers @tobiasrogers

Product management musings from your favourite Punk PM

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