Career: Jobs in product management
The management of sports products - from planning to sales - is a complex and responsible activity. The product manager bears the entrepreneurial responsibility of leading the respective product to success. Really good managers in this area are rare and sought after.
Most processes in the creation of a sports product are designed in such a way that each department plays its part in the success. Market research has to assess the competitive situation, the engineer takes care of the professional implementation within the standard, marketing deals with the optimal product presentation and so on. For the product manager, things are different: He manages and controls the entire life cycle of the new product. He is the "entrepreneur for a product" and thus permanently responsible.
Product management - experience is essential
One is not born as a product manager; many prerequisites can only be acquired with experience. For example, detailed knowledge of the planning and production processes in the company, of the product itself and of the market in which one operates is required. The product manager must meet with a high level of acceptance in his work environment, otherwise he will fail permanently.
Product manager as perfect communicator
The most important characteristics can be derived directly from interdepartmental work. The good product manager is a communication genius who possesses teamwork skills and assertiveness. He is able to motivate others, to argue factually and to deal with conflicts in a goal-oriented manner. He knows how to suggest creative solutions on the basis of his analyses, is capable of learning and is willing to put himself and his decisions at the service of the best possible product and thus of the company. Cholerics are just as out of place as phlegmatics.
Full decision-making authority in the job
For the reasons mentioned above, product management jobs are usually located directly under the management. The principle here is that whoever is responsible for the product must also be put in a position to make the necessary decisions. Time to market (TTM), quality, quantities - there is not always right or wrong. But decisions must be made.
Reaching the goal with training
Many product management positions are filled internally. This keeps the familiarization period within bounds and ensures knowledge of the skills of the employees involved. There is therefore no special training for product managers, such as a university degree. However, there are further training courses for managers, also specifically for product managers, which can be completed on a part-time basis. Personal weaknesses, for example in marketing or accounting, are compensated for in a targeted manner. The product manager cannot (and should not) be a specialist in all areas. However, he must be able to fully exercise his control function.
Sport Business - a challenging market
The sports business is one of the top industries for product managers. The market is very flexible and always on the move, so the demands increase. At the same time, you are guaranteed a very exciting job with excellent earning potential. New product lines are emerging, new sports demand innovation. Which niche will become the mass market? Where are decisive factors to be improved in order to enter the business with an innovative product?
There are attractive jobs in product management at sports startups as well as at leading sporting goods manufacturers. As an "interface manager," however, the larger communicative tasks await the product manager in larger companies. Herzogenaurach in central Franconia, with its sporting goods giants Adidas and Puma, is therefore one of the top addresses.