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October 27, 2021

The Customer-Obsessed Product Manager's Playbook

Decades ago, product management wasn’t a typical career path, as we know it now. However, as the product-led movement continues to gain ground, the tables are turning. Customers have become the heroes of a product’s success story, while internal teams collaborate to help the heroes succeed. Companies that once prioritized business growth over customer success, are now focused on delighting the customers and growing the business in the process.

To understand and delight customers, the product team needs a leader to give direction, offer support, and build bridges for productive collaboration. In other words, they need a product manager who isn’t solely laser-focused on the competition but one who is first customer-obsessed before anything else.

So, how can one go from being competitor-obsessed to customer-obsessed? How can product leaders find a balance between focusing on company goals/business needs and customer needs? We gathered expert insights from 50 product leaders to help you focus on solving customer pain points. From defining product success to developing customer-centric products to optimizing workflows, you'll find practical advice to help you succeed in your career as a product manager.

We hope the insights you glean from this playbook will help you identify areas that need improvement and take the right action.

About the author

Ryan Glasgow

Product guy. Early team member at Weebly (acquired by Square) & Vurb (acquired by Snapchat); UCSD alum. I started Sprig to help businesses identify and measure the unmet needs of their customers.

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