Jun 16

Jackie Bavaro on getting better at product strategy, what exactly is strategy, PM pitfalls to avoid, advancing your career, getting into management, and much more

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Lenny Rachitsky interviews world-class product leaders and growth experts to uncover concrete, actionable, and tactical advice to help you build, launch, and grow your own product.
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Jackie Bavaro is the author of the best-selling books Cracking the PM Interview and Cracking the PM Career. She was most recently at Asana, where she joined as its first product manager and later became the head of product. Earlier in her career, Jackie was a PM at Google and Microsoft, where she worked on high-impact products such as Google Search and Microsoft SharePoint.

In this episode, we cover:

1. How did Jackie become head of product at Asana? Start writing the best-selling PM books on interviews and the career ladder?

2. How and why to find a product coach.

3. What are the downsides of being a manager? How do you know if you want to go into management?

4. Can you stay an IC vs. becoming a manager?

5. What is “strategy”? What are the 3 components of a strategy?

6. What makes a good/bad strategy?

7. What are some ways to get better at strategy?

8. When should you start to invest in building your strategy muscle?

9. What are signs that your strategy is off?

10. What’s Jackie’s best piece of career advice?

11. Why is it smart to join a big company?

12. What are some of the most common mistakes PMs make early in their career?

13. What is the one thing Jackie thinks every PM should do regardless of their level?

Where to find Jackie:

- Twitter: https://twitter.com/jackiebo 

- Books: Cracking the PM Interview and Cracking the PM Career: https://amzn.to/3If6X9U

- Medium: ​​https://jackiebo.medium.com

References:

- Jackie’s book rec: Getting Things Done, by David Allen

- Current favorite app, Paprika: https://www.paprikaapp.com

- Favorite Twitter: https://twitter.com/hels 

- PEARL framework: https://jackiebo.medium.com/interview-tips-for-senior-pms-2424f7b7c967

- Eigenquestions: https://coda.io/@shishir/eigenquestions-the-art-of-framing-problems

Thank you to our amazing sponsors:

  1. Flatfile: www.flatfile.com/lenny

  2. Amplitude: www.amplitude.com

  3. PostHog: www.posthog.com/lenny