In this INSAID Spotlight interview, we feature Deepak Das, a Product Manager with over 15 years of experience. He is currently associated with Grant Thornton. His insatiable quest for knowledge and upskilling led him to enrol in the Global Certificate in Product Management at INSAID.
Question 1: Which program & batch are you part of at INSAID & tell us more about your current work profile? *
Deepak: I am part of the GCPM, July 2021 cohort, and had a great learning experience with INSAID. In my current role as a Product Manager, I am focused on delivering the best-in-class user experience to the professionals in my firm.
Question 2: Walk us through your career journey & what got you interested in Product Management?
Deepak: Over the last few years, I have been involved in building a modern digital workspace for the firm. By virtue of my role, the work which I was doing involved facets of roles played by modern-day Product Managers.
Similarities between my role and the PM role interested me in learning more about Product Management. Start of 2021, I was offered the role of PM in my team and I humbly accepted, since then it has been an enriching journey and I am learning each day.
GCPM has played a key role in my learning in the past few months, I was fortunate to apply some of my learnings into my products and stakeholder conversations.
Question 3: What all Product Management concepts, frameworks & tools have you mastered in your program at INSAID so far?
Deepak: I won’t say I have mastered it. I think I’m still learning, here are some of the concepts, frameworks and tools I have applied in my job. Whimsical is one of my favourites.
- Jobs to be Done (JTBD)
- Product-Market Fit
- Influence without authority
- Google HEART
- Product Metrics
- Product Plan
- Google Analytics
Question 4: What are some of the initial challenges when you got started on your Product Management journey and how did you overcome it?
Deepak: Understanding technology and influencing technology-led decisions were challenging when I started. Over the period of time, I have practised asking intelligent questions and gradually learned about the technical architecture which helped in navigating some of the initial challenges.
In the B2B space the biggest challenge is to get user feedback, I have made some in-roads by developing user persona however it continues to be an area of development. Over the years, I have also become more empathetic towards the users as well as the team I work with.
Question 5: Who is your favorite faculty at INSAID and what did you learn from them the most? *
Deepak: Undoubtedly Sai Charan Tej, three things stood out for me:
- His knowledge of tools
- Ability to offer real-life scenarios from his past experience as PM.
- He is also very punctual and professional.
Question 6: In your view, What is the goal of product management & how has it evolved in the last few years?
Deepak: In my view, the goal of product management is to design and develop products that solve/meet users’ needs. Product Management keeps the user at the core and this mindset shift is visible in the industry.
Even the traditional firms have realised the importance of focusing on users’ needs and these firms are now shifting their focus from a service to product-based approach.
Question 7: What are the current trends in Product Management that you are most excited about?
Deepak: I am fascinated by the concept of Product led Growth. A lot of the modern say SAS firms are leading the way. Postman is one such example.
Question 8: Which are some of the Product Management blogs, podcasts, communities, & channels that you follow?
Deepak: I follow quite a few actually:
- PM School
- Product Plan blogs
- The Product Podcast
- The Product Folks
- Product School, etc.
Question 9: Please tell how your journey has been with INSAID so far and what are the elements that you liked.
Deepak: It has been a great learning experience so far. I really enjoyed the structure of the entire course, it was well crafted. Sai did a great job of covering the topics both in theory and practical.
My biggest take away was from the Product Metrics module and the tools demonstrated through the last 6 months.
Question 10: What is your advice to anyone wanting to start a career in Product Management?
Deepak: Product Management offers multidisciplinary experience including business, design, user experience, technical development, etc. Finding all this in a traditional role could be challenging. My advice would be to explore this area of PM, there is no limit to learning.
Hope you enjoyed reading this interview. If you want to read more such interesting student stories, check out INSAID Spotlight.