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What are some clear indicators that someone is not ready for product management?

I used to interview a lot of PM candidates during my Yahoo days. Most of these candidates were from B schools with 2-4 years of work experience post MBA.

My evaluation criteria was very simple:

I would ask them a very irrelevant and ‘vague’ questions. For example: “How would you kill a site like Rediff” (Rediff was quite a success in India in the 2000 era). The response to this question pretty much helped me decide whom to take to the next round.

Here is how:

  1. Most (of the rejected candidates) started with 5 ideas on how to kill a certain company.
  2. None of them even asked me: why. Why would I want to kill a product? Just to satisfy my whims and fancies? Won’t you do the same when you join me?
  3. None of them ever said: How can I make a better product and make Rediff (or whatever the example was) irrelevant.

At its core, product managers are curious and always asking questions. If you don’t, this role isn’t for you.

(From my Quora answer)

What do you think?

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