I had been trying to make a transition into product management at consumer tech companies for a couple of months. I had trouble landing interviews in the types of companies that I was interested in. I got a few interviews and made it through a couple of rounds, but realized that I needed upskilling in some areas to make my selection a definite YES.
I looked at a couple of online PM courses and certifications but none of them met my requirements. I was not looking for a full-fledged PM course but something which would help me work on my blind spots to meet the skill gap and get to the interview stage.
One evening, I was casually browsing Twitter when I came across a fun quiz about product manger that someone in my network had taken. I was intrigued and clicked on the link that took me to the Upraised website. There, I learned about the assessment test which would help me evaluate my skills as a PM.
Since i was already trying to make a transition into the consumer product space and had a personal strength/weakness assessment, i figured that this test would help me validate my analysis. Moreover, this test is FREE!
So, there wasn't really anything to loose.
I took the KYS test without any additional preparation on the Upraised app right away!
I found the test extremely well designed and it felt as if I was working through problem statements in a live interview. It was both exciting and challenging.
At the end of the test, I got an excellent spider chart representing my performance across different skill parameters and a detailed analysis of the test results. The dashboard accurately showed my strengths and weaknesses and it aligned with my personal analysis.
By the end of the KYS test, I knew that the product understood my strengths and weaknesses accurately. My next requirement was how Upraised can help me mitigate those weaknesses.
After the test, I was shown a clear roadmap and timeline of how Upraised can help with a personalized learning journey and get me the dream PM job.
My biggest apprehension was with respect to the ROI that I would get from the Career Accelerator program and my ability to dedicate enough time together with my current job in parallel.
With COVID19 and lockdown imposed, I could find those extra hours and I knew that it was the best opportunity to upgrade myself and a small investment towards that goal would hardly matter in the long run. Hence, I signed up for the program.
My learning journey started with a discussion with Mona, the founder of Upraised, and she guided me with the approach for the next 16 weeks based on what my exact goals and aspirations are. Mona helped me understand how the PM role is different in different companies and where I could find the best fit based on my interests. At the end of the career planning session, we chose the top 5 companies to target in the following order of priority-
Post the career planning session, I worked upon was assigned a personal mentor- Aditya and throughout the learning journey, I had constant help and support from him to understand the best practices of approaching problem statements and improving my product sense.
My learning journey was tied very closely to the outcome of getting the job at the top company of my choice. It involved researching the background, industry, and competitors of the company and its products. This also involved writing a PRD for one of the feature suggestions on the existing company product.
Added to this, there was plenty of content and practice assignments to enable me to improve on my blind spots. Even the medium of learning was customized as per my preferred medium and it never got boring as I could switch between learning through reading, writing assignments, and watching learning videos.
One of the most valuable aspects of the learning journey was the active community of peers who were on a similar journey. Active participation in sharing learnings and discussing topics kept me motivated in the process.
By the end of the 4th week, my confidence was very strong, and I quit my existing job.
By the 6th week, I starting doing multiple mock interviews where my ability to handle ambiguity and demonstrate first principles thinking was tested by Upraised's PM interview framework.
Through these practice interviews, we were able to further improve the interview
By the end of the 7th week, my application along with the PRD was sent to Unacademy by Mona. With the extensive work that I had done in the PRD, I could stand out as a candidate among all the applicants.
I received a call from the talent acquisition team in less than a week and my interview was set for the next day.
And within the next 2 days, I was made an offer.
In conclusion, Upraised helped me only transition from enterprise to consumer product management in less than 8 weeks but also improve my confidence and product sense.
And the investment that i made was definitely worth it!
If you're someone who is looking to break into a PM role, I would highly recommend to check out Upraised and take the KYS test to evaluate yourself.