Product managers ain’t got no glory.
Doctors have it good. Lawyers too. Politicians, nurses, advertising executives, chefs, UPS drivers, actors, superheros, waitresses, real estate moguls, reporters, hairdressers, captains of industry, and stay-at-home moms. They all have the stuff. They’re all seen on TV, in film, featured in books and national magazine articles.
But you almost never see product managers – or product marketers for that matter – featured in the mass media. No wonder the Cranky Product Manager’s own mother has no understanding of what her daughter does for a living.
In fact, the only depiction of a product manager that the Cranky PM can recall was in that glorious homage to the drudgery of the cubicle-infested workplace, the movie Office Space. The character? Smykowski.
:-) Ah, that clip gives the Cranky PM a chuckle every time. Because it depicts exactly what Development thinks of Product Management by default, until proven otherwise. And who hasn’t encountered at least one product manager who should be named Smykowski?
But, alas, the clip is hardly a tool for educating the Cranky PM’s mother on the challenges faced by those unsung heroes, the Software Product Managers.
Has anyone else seen a depiction of Product Management in film or on television? In popular literature? Or perhaps in sculptures or paintings by the Great Masters? Do tell… the Cranky PM is waiting.