Product Management Joke: The Phone Call

Product Management Joke: The Phone Call

“Today’s my first day as a product manager,” Grant whispered to himself. “Whatever I do in these next few hours is going to cement the kind of PM people expect me to be.”

As he sat at his desk, staring at his silent desk phone. He knew he didn’t want to be one of those ‘pushover PMs’ – the kind who basically just take orders from customers and gets steamrolled by engineering and sales.

Another man walked into the room. Was he in engineering? Sales? Grant couldn’t tell.

Feeling pressured to make his big impression as the man approached, Grant picked up the receiver of his desk phone and pretended to get argumentative with the imaginary salesperson on the other side of the conversation.

Finally, Grant sighed and said, “Listen. If they need that feature, that’s fine. But we’re not building one-off custom features into the product. Talk with professional services and they’ll handle it. Okay? Thanks, bye.”

Grant hung up the phone. He looked up at the visitor and said, “Oh. Hi there. Can I help you?”

The man said, “Yes. I’m Stan. I’m here to activate your desk phone.”

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Christopher Cummings

Blogs about product management. Loves Jesus, his family, comic books, video games, and giant robots. Occasionally crawls through mud and leaps over fire.
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