And maybe a touch of excitement. But it isn’t technical. A great product manager leads the product vision and roadmap while helping a cross-functional team be great. While the architecture and delivery are owned by the engineering manager. My title at EMC is “Software Development Manager,” but my job is definitely “Software Engineering Manager.”. by Marty Cagan | Oct 31, 2007. Product Managers think strategically. You can change your choices at any time by visiting Your Privacy Controls. Though, some of them match, indeed, the major difference is that an engineering manager has a tech background, unlike a PM who’ got a more business-oriented role. In many environments, the engineering manager is willing to roll up his sleeves and code alongside his team while guiding the engineering team to grow both technically and professionally. Product Expert vs. Technical ExpertThe product manager is the go-to product expert on the team. The engineering manager defines and drives technical strategy and architectural vision for the product and sometimes the company. Sometimes those feelings are…, “Let’s get it done ASAP.” How many times have you heard this from your boss? — the world’s #1 roadmap software. Engineers, on the other hand, hold ultimate "code commit" power so product managers end up having to persuade them; even escalations to the engineer's manager are usually fruitless because an engineering manager is likely to side with his/her engineers. We and our partners will store and/or access information on your device through the use of cookies and similar technologies, to display personalised ads and content, for ad and content measurement, audience insights and product development. I am not a smoker. He is responsible for defining the development methodology and ensuring adoption across the engineering team and organization. He manages complex technical projects and a team of engineers. The engineering manager serves as a technical lead for technical decisions and he must stay abreast of advancements in related technologies. To enable Verizon Media and our partners to process your personal data select 'I agree', or select 'Manage settings' for more information and to manage your choices. For both roles to thrive and the relationship to succeed, the two team members need to play their parts with humility. But, early in my product management career, my engineering management counterpart was. because of them. He facilitates communication between the team and the stakeholders and ensures that the team is building the right product at the right time. Information about your device and internet connection, including your IP address, Browsing and search activity while using Verizon Media websites and apps. Product Management vs Software Engineering I am currently trying to gauge which area I would be more interested Product Management (PM) or Software Engineering (SWE). If a great product is the result of combining a real customer need with a solution that’s just now possible, then it’s easy to see why the relationship between the product manager and the engineering team is so critical. The product manager owns the product roadmap. The engineering manager designs appropriate solutions and recommends alternative approaches, when necessary. Have you worked in partnership with a great product or engineering manager? The Development team, in theory, is evaluated on its ability to Develop software. They understand their customers and … To find time on his fully packed calendar I would take “virtual” smoking breaks with him and review product development status, engineering updates, and any other issues facing the development team. Keith was a VP of Marketing at Aha! This happens for lots of reasons, but it is often driven by uncertainty over roles. He must be the master of the product. So, while he got his cigarette break, I got a little fresh air (standing upwind), and stole time from his calendar. For the product manager, this means she is responsible for making product decisions and must motivate and lead a cross-functional team of leaders from across the organization. The product manager is responsible for defining the solution, but the engineering team knows best what’s … The engineering manager is the technical lead and in many cases, visionary, for the technical direction of the product. He is the person responsible for defining, in detail, the “why’”and high-level “what” of the product that the engineering team will be asked to build. to build products customers love. This is how many of us feel when we do something new for the first time and we think people are watching. At a place like MS, you would own both the vision and the execution. The engineering manager must not only have technical chops but also directly manage a team of engineers. This is a lie. Working together, the product and engineering managers can create a product planning and development environment for success. HuffPost is part of Verizon Media. Her job is to clearly articulate the business value to the product team so they understand the intent behind the new product or product release. The engineering manager is the technical lead and in many cases, visionary, for the technical direction of the product. He facilitates communication between the team and the stakeholders and ensures that the team is … For those of you with PM AND SWE experience: what are the main differences, what led you to your current role, and what does the career outlook for each field look like? And it is true that product manager is a bit more technical than most marketing or sales positions. I have learned a great deal from technical managers and am a better strategist, product leader, and leader at Aha! 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