Skills of an API product manager
Should API Product Managers be tech-savvy or business-focused?
My opinion is they should be both tech-savvy and business-focused. Let’s first look at the technical skills that API Product Managers should have:
- Understanding the technology: API Product Managers should have a deep understanding of the technical aspects of APIs, including how they work, different protocols, and industry standards. This knowledge is crucial for effective communication with development teams and ensuring that APIs meet technical requirements.
- Problem-solving: Technical proficiency enables API Product Managers to efficiently identify and solve technical challenges. They can assess the feasibility of feature requests, evaluate trade-offs, and make informed decisions on technical matters.
What about the business-related skills?
- Market understanding: API Product Managers need to understand market dynamics, user needs, and industry trends. They should be able to identify market opportunities and align API development with business goals.
- Strategic thinking: Business-focused API Product Managers can develop a clear product strategy and measure the impact of APIs on the organization’s bottom line. They prioritize features based on business value and user impact.
- Stakeholder management: Effective communication and collaboration with cross-functional teams, executives, and customers are essential. Business acumen helps API Product Managers navigate relationships, secure buy-in, and advocate for the product’s success.
In summary, I believe API Product Managers should be generalists with both technical and business skills. They should be able to communicate technical concepts in business terms and vice versa, ensuring that API products align with strategic objectives while meeting technical requirements.