HomeEducationThe very best aspect initiatives for product managers - LogRocket Weblog Get...

The very best aspect initiatives for product managers – LogRocket Weblog Get hold of US

After 10 years of repeatedly working in product administration, I made a decision to go away my full-time job to take a brief trip round the same time final yr. Again then, I needed to get into freelancing since I favored the thought of engaged on totally different merchandise for a shorter time period. Generally that was not attainable at my final employer, Zalando, so within the hopes of exploring this new route, I launched a set of aspect initiatives.

These initiatives helped me get a shopper for whom I’m working as a contract product supervisor. Curiously, my affiliation with LogRocket as a contract author additionally occurred through one of many aspect initiatives.

On this article, we’ll deep dive into why product managers ought to have aspect initiatives and the way they can assist along with your private model.

Desk of contents

Several types of aspect initiatives product managers can work on

At first, a aspect mission is extremely depending on the competency of the PM. A PM with a excessive degree of coding expertise would possibly have the ability to create a full-fledged web site as an answer to a buyer’s drawback, whereas a PM which may not be as proficient with coding would possibly decide up a unique resolution. On this part, we’ll discover all various kinds of aspect initiatives a PM can work on:

Web site or app

This in all probability is the obvious one however can also be a time, useful resource, and money-consuming choice. We have to perceive {that a} web site or app will not be at all times an answer. There are a number of different methods by which a buyer drawback may be solved. Therefore, it’s essential to grasp what the issue is after which implement an answer reminiscent of an internet site or app.

Curiously, the market is now stuffed with a whole lot of no-code/low-code instruments {that a} PM can use to construct full-fledged web sites with out a lot coding. Nonetheless, there’s a steep studying curve for these platforms. Some extremely beneficial no-code/low-code instruments are, Carrd, Webflow, and Zapier.


Lenny Rachitsky left Airbnb in 2019 after serving as a product lead. He needed to construct a startup, however his curiosity in writing led him to create a e-newsletter on substack. Now in 2023, he has 472K subscribers.

The expansion of his e-newsletter exhibits the chance that lies in all the e-newsletter house. This exhibits {that a} web site or app doesn’t at all times must be a aspect mission. There are a whole lot of free e-newsletter platforms that may enable you create and run a e-newsletter in minutes. Some beneficial ones are Substack, LinkedIn Publication, Mailchimp, and MailerLite.


A few years again, I used to be getting ready for a product administration interview at Meta. Throughout this part, I got here throughout Dianna Yau. She has a collection of movies on her YouTube channel that helped me be taught extra about how one can method issues. Thus far, that is her aspect mission.

Movies are an effective way to resolve an issue. And however, they don’t take a whole lot of time, cash, and energy. YouTube, Instagram, and TikTok are the popular platforms for movies. However it’s good to grasp who’s your target market earlier than choosing one platform.


Programs are one other good way of incomes just a little more cash as a aspect mission whereas educating others what you already know.

Not too long ago bought a PM job at a startup? Create a course that helps different PM aspirants how one can discover a job at a startup. Employed just a few PMs in your crew? Create a course that helps different hiring managers perceive what to look out for whereas hiring PMs.

Alternatives are countless. You simply want an concept that’s value fixing. Kajabi, Gumroad, Udemy, Skillshare, are just a few of the notable platforms to create programs.


One other attention-grabbing choice for a aspect mission is a podcast. If you happen to aren’t into writing, coding, or creating movies, a podcast is an effective way to share your ideas and concepts. One of many attention-grabbing the explanation why a podcast is an attention-grabbing aspect mission is that it requires minimal effort to create one.

Alternatively, customers can take heed to the podcast even whereas at work or on the fitness center. That is totally different from watching a video or going via a course. Spotify is the popular platform for podcasts, however there are different smaller ones reminiscent of, podbean, and so forth.

Methods to discover and begin a aspect mission

Now that we discovered a handful of aspect initiatives that PMs can pursue of their free time, let’s deep dive and perceive how one can begin a aspect mission and decide one which makes essentially the most sense for you:

  • Discover your experience — Each PM has a unique skillset; some come from a coding background, some have very sturdy design data, and a few are exceptionally data-driven. So it actually depends upon the place your experience lies. That ideally must be the place to begin
  • Discover an issue value fixing — As soon as you determine what you’re actually good at, the following step is to search out an issue value fixing. One of the best ways to do this is to have a detailed take a look at your life and see if there’s something value fixing in it. Chances are high, one can find one thing. Lacking your mother’s home-cooked meals? Need to discover folks to work out with? Issues are all over the place. You simply want to determine which one is value fixing for you
  • Perceive the magnitude of the issue — Does the issue have an effect on a extremely small group of individuals or do you assume there may be much more than that? Do your analysis and determine the magnitude of the issue
  • Discuss to the customers — When you perceive the issue, speak to the customers affected by it. Purchase them a espresso and get to grasp their psychology associated to the issue
  • Construct an MVP — This half is the place issues get just a little difficult. Since we’re speaking a couple of aspect mission, we don’t wish to make investments tons of cash or time on this. So the thought is to construct one thing minimal and easy that may remedy the person’s issues
  • Take suggestions and iterate — As soon as the MVP is out, speak to the customers once more. Present the MVP. Perceive how they’re utilizing your product. Does your product remedy their drawback? If not, perceive what’s lacking. Iterate accordingly

Why ought to a PM have a aspect mission?

So, you could be asking your self, “If I’ve a full-time job, why ought to I’ve a aspect mission too?” Nice query — let’s speak about why PMs ought to have a aspect mission:

Why Should Product Managers Have A Side Project

For anybody who is aware of what a recession is, additionally is aware of the significance of being financially secure. Contemplating how the market went down final yr and continues to be recovering, it’s essential to at all times have that further money for robust occasions. And aspect initiatives enable you with that.

I wish to spotlight although that not all aspect initiatives will enable you earn cash and positively not an enormous quantity, however, if completed correctly, aspect initiatives can absolutely enable you pay your payments.

Develops private branding

The job market is aggressive. At present, with the intention to stand out, it’s essential to showcase your personal private model. Fact be informed, a powerful private model evokes confidence and belief. And aspect initiatives enable you to attain that.

Improves expertise

Prior to now, there have been circumstances the place I used to be not in a position to showcase or work on a few of my expertise as a product supervisor because the product I used to be engaged on didn’t require these expertise. That is the place a aspect mission can assist. It may well assist fill within the gaps — particularly these associated to the talents that you simply haven’t bought a possibility to work on in your full-time job.

Helps with networking

Facet initiatives enable you to community with everybody — hiring managers, recruiters, fellow PMs, and so forth. Networking is the one handiest device to extend alternatives in any type, be it discovering a brand new job, producing new enterprise alternatives, discovering new clients, and extra. Facet initiatives enable you do this.

How I used aspect initiatives to get my freelance PM gig

I’ve been a fan of aspect initiatives. In the beginning of the yr once I was actively in search of a contract product administration gig, I began a build-in public mission to construct 4 micro merchandise in 4 weeks. I wrote on Medium in addition to LinkedIn on a regular basis for 30 days about how I used to be constructing these micro merchandise.

The thought was to proceed constructing a kind of merchandise after the completion of this aspect mission and make it revenue-generating. However right here’s how issues performed in a different way. I bought in contact with the founding father of my present employer through Indiehacker. He was amazed by my mission. The interviews went properly and I’ve been fortunately working with him and the crew for the final 4 months as a contract product supervisor.

Alongside comparable traces, Nicole from LogRocket discovered my writing and reached out to supply me a writing partnership with LogRocket — due to which I’m able to write this text. Each of those alternatives knocked at my doorstep just because I did a aspect mission.

Remaining ideas

Facet initiatives can positively improve the data of a PM. And most often will add as much as their expertise. There are umpteen examples of when PMs left their 9–6 jobs after their aspect initiatives took off. So that you by no means know what’s in retailer!

If there may be an concept in your thoughts, I might extremely advocate you deliver it to life. Finest case, you can be self-sustainable through the mission, worst case, you’ll be taught one thing.

Are you engaged on a aspect mission? If sure, please remark. I might like to know.

Featured picture supply: IconScout

#aspect #initiatives #product #managers #LogRocket #Weblog

Continue to the category


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

- Advertisment -spot_img

Most Popular

Recent Comments