Ongoing training and education are critical for success in many fields of business. Technology advances, market conditions change, laws and regulations are enacted or repealed, and the state of the economy influences buying and expansion decisions.
News feeds and industry blogs can help an executive or manager stay up to date with many of these developments, but some changes in the business environment are so radical or profound that they require changes in ways of thinking or even changes in how training is structured.
Here we’ll look at how online learning management systems (LMS) can help organizations and their executives adapt to such changes in an extremely cost effective and timely manner.
What Sets Apart A Great Product Manager From The Rest?
Successful product managers are usually acutely aware of the need for continuous training. They must have technical skills and understanding, as well as highly developed interpersonal communication skills. These skills need to be developed, improved and refined to make a successful career.
A product manager needs to develop targets that will give him or her, the most accurate information on what customers want and need, but still keep in mind a quote that is often attributed to Henry Ford; “If I had asked people what they want, they would have told me faster horses.”
Classic literature and experience on the job may help a product manager develop the leadership skills necessary to meet the challenges that are inherent in product management. These include responsibility without authority and the desire of engineers to improve a product, even when improvements are not necessary.
The most important benefit of a LMS for a product manager is that it can provide a single point of access to retargets from a wide variety of disciplines and formats.
The trainee can access product diagrams and join online discussions that help sharpen his or her technical skills.
Many LMSs use online simulations that give the trainee a description of a project or objective. The trainee is then asked to choose from several different options as the simulation progresses. The choices that the person makes have simulated consequences. There are not necessarily right or wrong answers. Rather, this method encourages the person to understand causes and effects, rather than simply memorize facts.
- Learning Management Systems can easily be configured so that they are tailored to the needs of a specific industry or even a specific firm within that industry. They can therefore incorporate the most up to date statistics and other information that will make simulations relevant and realistic.
- LMSs are also flexible enough to help participants avoid tunnel vision by incorporating social media, such as LinkedIn and Facebook.
- Interaction with peers in other industries or other professions can give product managers insight in how to achieve greater efficiencies or greater success in product introduction. Ongoing interaction with peers through social media can also introduce targets of information to a product manager that he or she would not necessarily discover through traditional business or academic contacts.