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Three key capabilities the product managers are looked for at FlipKart

Saran Chatterjee, VP Product (FlipKart) talks about the 3 key capabilities he looks in Product Managers when hiring at Flipkart. As a guest at the institute at the final project submission day for ICPM course, I happened to take a note of these capabilities for the benefit of aspiring technology product managers.

Clarity of thought

Saran foresees the clarity of thought as the basic minimum requirement a product manager to succeed. Product managers are expected to work on strategic aspects related to business. Talking about strategic aspects, it entails having a detailed overview of ecosystem; which includes knowing the stakeholders involved across the value chain system along with their roles and importance in the business. Secondly, from strategic viewpoint, a product manager needs to be focussed on industry itself as she needs to constantly foresee opportunities and threats as perceived to her product business. This involves highly competitive research and analysis capabilities. Thirdly, product manager needs to have the knack to draw a vision for her product in alignment with the vision of the organization itself.

Independence of thought

From tactical view point, product manager needs to define and plan the roadmap across the product management life cycle and finally implementing the same by working independently whenever required to deliver business. A common problem quoted by Saran is that during designing UX for the product, different team members and users have different opinions but the goal of a product manager to assess the viewpoints of everyone and then come out with the best UX which is acceptable to almost everyone.

Stakeholder Centric

Another most important trait which is looked in a product manager according to Saran is proactive stakeholder management capability. A successful product manager according to Saran is one who is able to sense the problems being faced by the customers on continuous basis and keep on improving the product. This can only be achieved by proactively getting involved with the customers to know their pain points and work on the same. Saran quotes that product managers, at executive level in Flipkart, don’t shy in picking up the phone or personally meet the customers to get first hand inputs to provide seamless user experience.

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