Product Management Mentoring

What is it?

Direct mentoring for product professionals, from product owners just starting out through to director-level product leads. The type of support is adjusted appropriately to the individual involved; they are assigned a Product Reactor consultant who takes them through a three-phase process over a period of six months.

This direct, one-to-one, relationship is designed to work on a push-pull basis. Mentees are able to raise any problems as they go along, and are offered ad-hoc support throughout the programme, but the overall direction and planned outcomes are agreed up-front after an initial assessment. What outcome can I expect?

Direct artefacts from this process include:

  • detailed assessment at the start and the end of the knowledge and skills of the mentee;
  • report on the progress made during the programme, with halfway-stage report;
  • professional development plan at the end of the programme to advise on further actions to take.

The programme is designed to engage the mentee in a process of continual learning, and we would expect most people to acquire three concrete new skills during the programme. What is the content of the programme?

As mentioned, this is a three-phase programme:

  • Month 1: Introduction and assessment
    • Initial diagnostic and skills assessment
    • Situation analysis of the individual’s role within the wider organization
    • Identification of challenges ahead
    • Development of mentorship plan (ideally, aligned to product strategy)
  • Months 2-5: Ongoing mentorship
    • 1 check-in each month, 1 hour long videoconference
    • Discussion of work since last meeting, acknowledgment of successes and failures
    • Setting 3 goals for the month ahead
    • 1 product-related task aligned to planned work
    • (Every other month) 1 new skill to acquire and practice
  • Month 6: Moving forward and next steps
    • Acknowledgment of successes and failures over the programme
    • Repeat diagnostic and skills assessment
    • Professional development plan for the mentee

For this programme to be most successful, it is best that it aligns with an individual’s appraisal: either starting the programme as a response to professional development requirements identified within an appraisal, or using the output of the programme as an input into the individual’s performance appraisal. However, in practice it can be started at any time.

We require the following commitments from the individual and wider business that they are involved in:

  • that we receive a clear job description for the individual involved
  • that we receive at least a precis of the product strategy that the organization is following
  • that both the organization and the individual concerned will commit the time for both the meetings involved but also the “homework” set in between

While we tailor the programme to the individual and the business involved, there are times we will ask the individual to acquire and practice a skill that is not directly supporting the work they have otherwise been asked to do. It is important that they are able to spend the time required on the skills in order to progress.

What are the costs?

The costs of the programme vary on the current level of experience of the mentee, and the type of role they have - in particular, whether or not they currently manage a team.

Mentee Cost Less than two years’ experience, no line management responsibility £599 + VAT/month Between two and five years’ experience, or line management responsibility £729 + VAT/month Executive product leader coaching & mentoring £999 + VAT/month

Enquire about Mentoring