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What Does a Product Manager Do When They Aren’t the CEO of Their Product? They Master the Art of Persuasion.

Occasionally, out of ignorance and lack of touch with working product managers, someone describes a product manager as the CEO of their product.  Unfortunately, they are grossly overstating the level of power and authority given to product managers.  CEOs lead and command authority because they are the highest ranking individual in the entire organization.  They have ultimate and supreme power.  People obey them.  They are the boss.

A product manager, on the other hand, must persuade and motivate others without having any real power. The only tool the product manager has is the language they use, the spoken and written word. 

So how do you get people to understand why a particular course of action is warranted?  And how do you get them to do what you need them to do without being able to wield any power or authority over them?  You can’t just talk louder, or keep repeating your point or resort to nagging or a temper tantrum.  You have to use a particular language that is more effective.  Strategic language.  The key is in using carefully chosen language that addresses their Motivation Type.

Join our AIPMM Anthropologist, Paula Gray as she uncovers the key to more effective persuasion by understanding your audience’s Motivation Type.  She will explain how to determine an individual’s motivation type and then how to strategically craft your language to address the core issues of each type. 

Topics covered will include:

  • What are Motivation Types and how people acquire them
  • How to determine an individual’s Motivation Type
  • How to speak to each Motivation Type to engage and persuade them
  • How to speak to a group that is a mix of Motivation Types


About Paula Gray

Paula Gray is an anthropologist and the Director of Knowledge Development at AIPMM. She has traveled the globe to work with companies throughout the US, Europe, Africa and Asia-Pacific to help them gain a deeper understanding of their customers. She is featured in Linda Gorchels' book The Product Manager's Handbook and has contributed to several books on product management including The Guide to the Product Management and Marketing Body of Knowledge (ProdBOK). She is also the author of numerous blog posts, articles, and papers including Business Anthropology and the Culture of Product Managers.