It can seem like a long leap from finance to product management, but it doesn’t have to be tough. If you are determined enough, your goals are realistic, and you have some sort of technical background, it’s possible. There are a lot of Product Managers that transitioned from consulting and you can be one of them.
Here are some tips on how to get closer to your goal.
Product Strategist at UberEats
Ryan Cunningham is a Product School graduate who now works on the Product Strategy team at UberEats. In his former life, the Texas-born Ryan worked as an investment banker in DC and New York City in companies such as Credit Suisse. He recently moved to the Bay Area to begin his new life in Product Management. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Finance and Economics.
How does one transition from finance to product management?
Ryan discussed how he transitioned from finance into product and walked through the key skills that transfer and those that don’t, as well as unexpected areas that will require a steep learning curve, particularly in culture and how to spend your time. Based on his experience and lessons learned, Ryan provided insights on how to make this transition as frictionless as possible.
- Don’t stick to finance or any other field if you don’t like it even if it is the safe thing to do.
- Get your hands dirty and challenge yourself.
- You must have a passion for what you do.
- If you don’t have the right background or you do but don’t know how to present it, get more license by joining courses, such as Product School.
- By taking courses, you will learn about useful tools and products that you can use in the future.
- Start building cool stuff to solve other people’s problems.
- The problems are sometimes really hard but really rewarding and interesting.
- Allow yourself to get out of your comfort zone.
- Be prepared to make mistakes but remember to learn from them.
- “Never stop asking ‘why.’” Meaning that always remember to ask what excites you and why, what makes you smile and why. Figure out what you want.
- When transitioning to Product Management bring your whole self.
Moving from finance to product management is not impossible. Knowing what you want to do is the most important thing. Once you set your mind to do it, you are already one step closer. The road to product is not going to be easy but getting out of your comfort zone never is, right?
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