Well, that’s an easy one! The PMs I met until I wanted to be a PM were all glamorous people – articulate, suave, stylish, knowledgeable, and awe-inspiring. I was taken in by the glamor you can say! 🙂
These awe-inspiring people were globetrotters, fantastic orators, and most of them knew their shit! There were a few who didn’t….and those were the ones that didn’t matter (more on that later).
So that’s why I wanted to be a Product Manager.
That was a lie.
In the course of writing developer- and end-user documentation for years, I discovered that I could often spot gaps (oops, areas of improvement in the product) in the product, suggest better ways of doing a particular thing or recommend shorter flows to achieving the same outcomes, or simply suggest a better field label for a lousy one. I often looked at products I worked on and thought, “would I like to use this product?”, and if the answer was “no”, I would set about finding “why”, and then often walk up to the PM or UX and have a chat.
Having been a content writer on a User-Centered Design (UCD) team, I knew about user research and personas, and had used those as inputs to developing content for a banking giant in the US and Canada. So I was pretty familiar with UR, UX, UI/FEP (Front End Production), and how these teams orchestrated their work with often a PM guiding them to build a product that the customer needed.
And the clincher for me was a 65-page proposal on Embedded User Assistance that I took up to the the Senior Director of Product Management in my company, who loved my ideas and directed that they be incorporated into the product.
So started my journey into the world of Product Management.