Monday, 14 February 2022

As Project Manager - Struggling for business operations & maintenance

The original intention of writing this article is to summarize my experience of how to start from "zero" all the way to the egg pain after i transferred from the business operation and maintenance post to the product manager post for more than half a year, and at the same time, as a new product student, i have some understanding and thinking about the position of product manager and how to do 2b products! if this article is considered a product requirement, then what are the roles and scenarios in this requirement?

first, a combing and summary of the most important year that i have been a new product student.

second, non-product students who have accumulated several years of work experience and want to transfer to product jobs (such as pm, development, operation and maintenance). can you tell from this article what a product manager does? what capabilities are needed? what does the product manager do? (recommended to read in full)

third, new students with 0-1 years old products, we confirm, learn from each other, communicate and improve. you can learn from this article about the growth path and pits that a new product manager has stepped on this way without anyone to take it, and maybe help you get around these pits! (recommended to read this chapter on the road)

Fourth, students who have C-end product manager experience and have just entered 2B-side products. You can learn from this article that as a new 2B product manager, you have a small understanding of 2B products, maybe these small ideas can help you! (It is recommended to read this chapter of Cultivation 2B Together)

here first of all, we will play a hard wide of our team's product "weaving clouds" without restraint, and since it is a hard wide, it must be big black and thick.

weaving cloud is an enterprise-level o&m management platform originated from tencent, inheriting standardized o&m methodology and experience, supporting public cloud, private cloud, hybrid cloud management, one-click o&m operation and intelligent monitoring, zero access cost, seamless integration with tencent cloud components, and easy one-stop o&m management.

zhiyun goes overseas with tencent cloud to create the most professional and easy-to-use financial cloud one-stop operation and maintenance solution. i am mainly responsible for the planning and landing of the product line of the monitoring and alarm platform of weaving cloud. warmly welcome the same students who are doing monitoring and warning to communicate more. i left my personal wechat id at the end of the article.

first, the starting point

the ad has also been played, and it is time to start the main text. first do a simple self-introduction, after joining the goose factory, has been in the hand q business operation and maintenance position, responsible for the product operation and maintenance of hand q, that is to say that this position and products to deal with the most scenarios, that should be because of the activities and product functions caused by the resource requirements and product manager .

Before the transfer of their own understanding of the position of product manager is actually very ignorant, in the second half of last year, the center tested the water to set up a team to do external operation and maintenance products, the goal is to let our internal polishing of the Devops best practice platform weaving cloud to go out (all members of the team are from business operation and maintenance positions), it turned into a product dog.

at that time, i thought that i had not eaten pork, i had not seen the pig run, after all, i had also brought the planning of the internal operation system and the operation system used in the operation and maintenance, and the experience behind fully verified the fearlessness of the ignorant!

1.1 here are some basic concepts in order:

  • what is the product?
  • what the hell is a product manager?
  • what does the product manager do?
  • what competencies do product managers need?
  • what are the roles of the product team?

1.2 what is the product?

a product is anything that can be offered to the market, used and consumed by people, and meet some of people's needs, including tangible goods, intangible services, organizations, ideas, or combinations thereof.

isn't it a little abstract? the key words in this sentence are market, use, consumption, demand. in terms of daily life, the hot dry noodles bought on the side of the road every day are products, and the buns on the 12th floor of tengda are also products, and they also meet the needs of our food. similarly, mobile qq and wechat are also products to meet our communication and connection needs.

1.3 What the hell is a product manager? (Product Manager)

the word product manager is actually a relatively broad and with a certain industry attributes of the word, the definition of the product manager described here is specifically refers to the it industry or the internet industry in a function, responsible for the planning and design of it (internet) products, as well as the management of the life cycle. the key word in this sentence is planning, design and management.

in the book "apocalypse: building products that users love", it is introduced that the main task of the product manager is to explore the value, usability, and feasibility of the product. in the past, when i saw this sentence, i seemed to understand it, but now that i look back, i agree with it very much.

here to say two more, the product manager of this position is with its own contradictory attributes, and with the manager of this two words, i feel that there should be rights, in fact, wool rights are not!

low entry threshold, relative to the business operation and maintenance position, this position does not have a lot of hard skill indicators, but the real entry and do a good job feels quite difficult, before and peer exchanges after the new students basically have three mountains, product thinking, the ability to do products, the feeling of industry products, of which the ability to do products is still relatively quantifiable some indicators, and product thinking and feeling is a bit difficult to quantify (everyone's interpretation may be different)

It is also said that every product manager is a potential CEO (Joe Gang, Pony, Lei Jun, etc.), but he is also an all-round back pot man, and it is a 360-degree back pot without dead angles.


generally speaking, when it comes to value, there will be various big words, and here we will not talk about big words, but describe them in a down-to-earth way. the author believes that the value of a product manager can be explained in one sentence.

help the team (company) you serve, design (evolve) the right product that meets the needs of users, and make money back directly or with real money.

isn't it tacky? however, the product is like this, a designed and landed product if it can not directly or indirectly assist to earn money back. that product actually failed, the good buns can not be sold are inventory, then these buns have not created the value they deserve? the key words in this sentence are design (evolution), satisfaction, demand, correctness, and making money.

1.5 what does the product manager do?

based on my understanding of the product manager position and the main work of this half year, the specific work content of the product manager i summarized is as follows, which is actually the main step (linear order) of a product landing.

market research & analysis:
how about the main research and analysis of the big business environment? is the cake big enough? how long can this amount of cake last? can the cake still be enlarged? what heavyweight players exist in the industry? what are the mature commercial competitors? who are our customers? what are the commonalities, segmentation, potential needs, etc. these customers have.

this part is actually a very difficult part for the product manager who has just entered the industry, i feel that there is no way to start, i have the impression that we will also apply the report ppt made by the mature team of the brother department to the bosses, and then dismantle it according to the gourd painting scoop. especially in the case of environmental analysis, if there is no bi team intervention, it is basically uncertain, even if you can refer to some industry data, you cannot guarantee its effectiveness and accuracy.

product planning:
plan the positioning of the product and determine the user group classification (who uses it)? and how to use it? (scene), in this part is generally the output of the product function map (mind map), can be explained clearly on the way.

product design:
define product experiences and values, and design product structure and functionality. in this part, the prototype design of the entire product (function) is output, and the framework of the overall product experience and function points is displayed through the prototype here. it is recommended to output high-fidelity prototypes of products with basic interactions as much as possible, so that the internal review is clearer and the cost of communication with the development brothers in the later stage can be reduced

requirements implementation:
work closely with the development students to complete the development and launch of the requirements.

product acceptance:
after the development is completed and the self-test is completed, the product manager comes to do the acceptance of the main function, which is mainly whether the acceptance business logic conforms to the design of the product manager. as for the product quality is not considered here for the time being, that level is mainly tested and developed together to ensure.

user manual & scenario description video:
the user's help documentation. in fact, this part of the user document can also be divided into product manuals and typical scene documents, and typical scene documents are a subset of product manuals.

however, through the subsequent delivery, users basically do not look at the document much, so we also recorded a scene use video to be more convenient for users.

iterative optimization:
collect and analyze user feedback, and explore optimization points and new requirements. iterate and optimize the product.

1.6 what competencies does a product manager need?

based on the main work content of the product manager above, we can basically outline the capabilities that a product manager needs, 3 + n capability model 3 core capabilities + n basic capabilities.

will use tools
Axure RP (Product Prototyping)

Xmind (Mind Map)

Visio (Drawing a Business Logic Flowchart)

thinking skills
abstract thinking skills

structural thinking ability (logical thinking ability)

logic is self-consistent

can speak and write
i can talk to different people and different roles in the whole design and landing process of the product.

when facing the user introduction, you can tell the user story and tell the user story round.

be able to write documents that your team members and users can understand.

understand design and interaction
avoid designing anti-human interaction processes

better layout of the page

know a little bit about technology
this is not to say that you have to understand it very well, after all, it is not a specific development student, but that there is a certain technical background and development can be talked about together.

industry business capabilities
for example, if i came from a business operation, then i understand what operation and maintenance does? what do i do with o&m? what kind of tool platform is needed for o&m.

understand some data analysis
know what kind of operational data you need as a benchmark for subsequent iterations of optimization.

know a little about project management
thinking ability, being able to speak and write, and industry business ability these three are core capabilities, and the rest are basic capabilities

1.7 what roles does the product team consist of?

a full product team will be made up of the following roles product manager design (visual & interactive), technology (front office, back office, testing, pre-sales, after-sales)

at the beginning of our team, there were only two product managers, me and another classmate, two people who were jointly responsible for the design and landing of the product line of the weaving cloud automation platform, and the rest were operation and development students in the department. we'd joke that the only difference between us and startups is that we don't go bankrupt, we don't have to worry about not being paid, and the rest are the same as startups.

but so all the way to see, in the early and middle school in fact, as long as there are three roles (product, development, design) can basically run up, the biggest advantage of the team is that the communication cost is extremely low, there is no problem with these guns is not standing in front of the whiteboard to discuss unclear, and then directly do, encounter problems in the discussion!

through the above, the students who want to transfer jobs and the new product students can already know more clearly what the product manager is doing? what are the main steps to landing with a product?

second, on the road

in fact, making products is the same as being a product manager and playing games, all the way is also a process of upgrading and fighting monsters, upgrading layer by layer. here's a look at the harvest and the pits i've stepped on for half a year. generally speaking, mature teams will have mentors to take you away, but because we are a start-up team, there is no real product manager in the team, and everyone is learning while doing, so it is more about relying on their own understanding. maybe my experience is more suitable for my classmates who go on their own.

2.1 elementary schools: find the way to get started (painting, reading, dismantling)

at this stage, i have just entered the industry, and i am not familiar with the overall process of commercial product landing, which is basically two eyes and one black. what are my strengths and weaknesses in finding my way to get started?


  • how does familiar operations do? know the pain points of o&m (because the team outputs o&m platform products)
  • led the construction of the operation system, understand some of the basic routines of system & function landing
  • i have seen and used a lot of operating systems
  • i have been dealing with development for many years and know how to communicate with development
  • know a little about project management

inferior position:
there is no complete process of going through a commercial product from 0 to 1

will not draw the original shape


no competitive analysis

the focus of this phase is:
Drawing: Familiar with Axure RP, copy someone else's system, and draw prototypes. When there will be time, it will draw on the company-level platform system, which is not a small gain. Drawing is a great way to clear your mind and familiarize yourself with basic page interactions.

look: look at more foreigners' products and see how foreigners do it. some of them can't understand the position at that time, but it doesn't matter, it's good to have an impression, and there will always be a chance to confirm it later.

read: read more books, read methodological books + books with specific guidance

move: start to try to do competitive analysis, even if the analysis is very young, a few more times, you will gradually feel.

dismantling: at that time, there was already a functional module to be completed in hand, before the specific start, first compare the internal platform to try to disassemble the business logic, think about why you want to do this? what scenarios does this cover? what are the implications of not doing so?

follow: follow the demand, ensure that the demand is on schedule and in line with the design of the landing.

pits stepped on at that time:

thinking that doing an internal operating system is the basis for making commercial products is actually very different

the internal operating system is used, does not mean that you are doing a good job, but may only be the choice that your target users do not have, and can only use this.

internal operating systems lack versioning planning (product roadmap), operational and hard quality metrics requirements.

most of the internal operation systems are only doing demand rather than products, the addition of requirements is reflected in the internal operation system more deeply, and the product is to subtract more than to add (focus, extension, expansion, input-output ratio, etc.)

when i first learned to get started, i didn't have the ability to distinguish whether the methodology and process i understood were applicable to the scene of my own work, laying a mine for the road behind.

2.2 secondary school: practice & familiarity (responsible for functional modules)

through the foundation of the first stage, it can be said that we have basically understood some basic routines for making products, and we have also touched some small needs. you can start to gradually get started with the complete functional module planning and landing.

the focus of this phase is:

understand and familiarize yourself with the planning and landing process of commercial products from 

do a good job of competitive analysis, because in the first stage of competitive analysis are relatively shallow, here i summarize the use of peeling onion method to analyze the function of competitors, there are also many methodologies for competitive analysis on the internet, you can also refer to

  • analyze user groups
  • analyze user scenarios
  • analyze user stories
  • analyze how often user function points are used
  • analyze existing functional coverage
  • analyze the ideas conveyed
  • principle of two eight (20% of the functions can meet 80% of the user's use scenarios)
  • see users, identify requirements, and think about common scenarios.

can't just listen to the user, identify the pseudo-needs, and think about what the real needs of the user are?

determine how much product functionality does? what is the feature priority?

do a good job of business logic conception and interactive experience

pits stepped on at that time:

  • not good at cutting demand and merging demand, coveting big and complete, technical thinking, always thinking of doing comprehensive, do not miss the scene
  • not good at locating the target, purpose and analysis of the demand after completion
  • too much emphasis is placed on the product interaction experience
  • the pursuit of demand scenes and expressions tends to be perfect

2.3 university: global vision and product line planning (focus on how to do subtraction and define product line)

the problem of the stage
after reaching this stage, you can basically try to hold the entire product line, this time is more to think about the following problems:

what are the goals and blueprints for a large product line?

what is a big user story?

at this stage, more thinking is not about the superposition of simple requirements, but to clarify the value and significance of each function point on the product roadmap, and it is necessary to string together the scattered points.

figure out what to do at each big point in time (version delivery time)? what not to do? where is the value of doing it? what will happen if you don't do it?

how does the functional closed loop between versions work? how to ensure global logic self-consistency?

how is the progression between versions outlined?

try to use as many wheels as possible (try to borrow the now mature internal modules as much as possible, cross-team and external friends are ok), for our immature team, especially critical, it is impossible to do everything by yourself, you can only exhaust yourself.

make trade-offs and balances, don't do what you shouldn't do, waste manpower. for start-up teams, sometimes it's a race against time. demand is inexhaustible, be sure to think clearly about what you are doing.

  • version planning and iteration
  • the evolution of user stories
  • the life cycle of a product (feature).
  • design planning: availability of the product
  • r&d and production: product feasibility.
  • sales: the value of the product.
  • operation
  • market feedback

the above three stages are my personal current upgrade road, the road behind is still very long, i am also slowly pondering, and so on to realize it later, and can be applied to practice, in communication with everyone.

3. demand pool management

after thinking about it, i still take out the requirements management and write it separately, why? because demand management is actually in the next two stages will always run through, and it is also quite important.

3.1. source classification of demand

the boss needs, i believe that every product classmate will encounter

customer feedback requirements, customer scenario definition (pseudo-requirements aside)

the demand of the main line of the product, the students in charge of the product line are planned according to the information, and the function points that the main line of the product must be done

sign the demand, in order to make a single must do the demand

request from partners

i have encountered these 5 types of needs, so are there any differences between good and bad or reasonable and unreasonable in these 5 types of needs? at this stage, i feel that there is no such thing, and each requirement has its own specific background and specific goals for the generation of a specific curing scene. these types of requirements must conflict in time or function. at this time, what to do or not to do requires product students and teams to discuss and evaluate together, and the product manager must first think clearly.

demand management is a must do, or the product manager is a firefighter (always doing imminent things, will make people lose the goal), not only the product line is chaotic, and finally the overall thing is also a four-different, maybe the product manager himself is dizzy.

3.2 methods of requirements management

for a detailed methodology of requirements management, you can read the plum principles, which provides a template for requirements analysis that i have summarized based on this methodology and practice.

requirements submission company prioritization is the definition of the importance of each customer when you have multiple customers.

why should there be an internal position in the client's company? because the demand for different positions will sometimes affect the ordering, for example, the demand raised by the customer cto and the demand raised by the front-line employees cannot be equated, which is the reality!

another point is not presented in the table because it is not easy to measure objectively, that is, the control of sales over customers, that is, how sure the sales are when making orders.

fourth, the product manager's self-cultivation

4.1 cultivation of the mind:

at this stage, i feel that the cultivation of product managers can be summarized in 6 words.

see more: look more at the industry, look more at competitors

listen more: listen to the voice of the first-hand customer, if you can't communicate directly with the customer, then the information source channel should also be high-fidelity, and there can be too much distortion.

think more: think more about user stories, product values, and product blueprints. those that must be done, those that must not be done, those that are postponed

talk more: talk to your peers

try more: try harder, and the cost of failure is something the team can afford, not lose the customer

zero: avoid mindsets

4.2 pits in the cultivation process

the same product manager has a few pitfalls to avoid

Self-high: I feel very OK, tending to be perfect, in fact, no one uses.

think clearly in the hands: avoid planting obvious logical defects in the product or the logical self-consistency between functions and functions, and prefer to sometimes suppress the rhythm and think clearly.

over-insist: unless you are already very bullish, everyone recognizes the product bull, otherwise it is still good to listen to it.


details are the devil: when in charge of the product line, more should consider the overall direction, rather than the small details. it's not that the details aren't important, but that the details can be improved through subsequent iterations.


as a new 2b product manager, my work is also centered on building a weaving cloud, which is an enterprise-level operation and maintenance management platform in the financial industry and a typical 2b product.

5.1 2 product features

solve specific problems in each work, or systematize existing processes to improve efficiency

users have a certain professional background in the industry, and there will be professional training for users before delivery.

the fault tolerance rate is very low, and the cost of trial and error is also high (small steps on the 2c side, rapid iteration, a small version of a few days or a week currently feels less applicable)

the quality requirements of the product itself are very high, and if the customer's business fails or the existing network fails due to the quality of the platform, it is an absolutely big event.

the o&m platform should provide a complete set of functions, and the functions must be available, even if the depth of each function is not very deep at the beginning. b-end users pay more attention to one-stop solutions, rather than mixing multiple platforms, and the overall it cost and user learning cost of multi-platform enterprises are high.

Relative to the C-end B-side lighter experience and interaction, just at the beginning of the frustration of a little ugly is not a big problem, as long as the interaction can be smoothly completed, B-end users in the interactive experience tolerance is quite high, the reason or the platform core or to complete a specific work task.

Before hearing a salesman say a sentence, a good 2B product is to help the user who uses this product to do his job, that is to say, 2B products should be reliable, very agree with this sentence!


the business logic of designing products is demanding, and the contextual relevance of business processes is strong

the business rules are complex and the scenarios are more subdivided

the function should first be horizontally stacked, and the depth of longitudinal excavation should be rhythmic, and the large functional direction should be closed-loop

in most scenarios, the perfection and quality of the function always takes precedence over the interactive experience (visual), etc., which is not to say that the experience is not important, but that the 2b product is priority to help users finish the work.

design to multi-role, for example, a large platform from the perspective of organizational structure, there will basically be three roles, front-line employees, middle management, senior managers, they have different perspectives on the platform, the desired functions are also different.

the permissions should be detailed, and different positions should have different permissions in the platform.

manage the expected behavior of users simplify user operating costs

5.3 pits that have been stepped on

Too much emphasis on interactive experience, spent a lot of time and energy, i now design a basic principle is to smoothly complete the established operation and operation process design is not anti-human, as for more clicks on the mouse, less click on the mouse and other interaction details are not big problems, and the interaction itself is also to rely on time to polish.

the business logic is not clear, and the simple function point logic cannot be closed-loop.

6. Summary

the cultivation path of product manager is very long, and it is quite difficult to grow into an excellent product manager. if you want to do it, you must maintain your love for the product, curiosity, think more about different products, and think more. product manager is a very interesting position, especially when you watch a product from scratch, in the gradual recognition of users, this is a very fulfilling thing.

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