It's difficult to get a product job. The functions of products vary depending on the firm, industry, and stage. How do you prepare for an interview that might cover a wide range of topics and inquire about your whole career?

To succeed in your product management interview, you must first grasp how product management interviews function, including everything from how to respond to interview questions to the competence you should emphasize. The books listed below might help you prepare for your upcoming PM interview, but they can also be used as ongoing resources as you advance through your career.

In this guide, we'll take a look at each book, the pros and cons, and information about the author and content. Interviewing, techniques and procedures, design, technology, and leadership are just a few of the themes covered in these product management books. Let's dive in...

Best books for product management interviews

  1. Cracking the PM Interview by Gayle Laakmann McDowell
Cracking the PM Interview by Gayle Laakmann McDowell

Overall, I recommend you read Cracking the PM Interview since it provides a comprehensive overview of the Product Manager interview process. If you're just getting started in the field of product management, this is a wonderful place to start. Though, it can be a bit simple in format and themes, which might not be ideal for more technical product managers.

Pros and cons

McDowell and Bavaro cover a lot of topics in a straightforward manner. The book's major strength is the amount of information it covers on acquiring a PM job, such as resume and cover letter tips, interview questions, and etcetera. Each of these concepts is accompanied by concrete examples.

Although, there are a few flaws in the book. To begin with, it feels redundant in sections when the same information might have been compacted into fewer chapters. Second, in the middle of the book, there is a chapter on career promotion, which is a bit distracting if you're getting ready for interviews, and it generally feels out of place given the rest of the book's material.

Authors and content

Gayle Laakmann McDowell was a member of Google's recruiting committee and worked for Google, Microsoft, and Apple. Jackie Bavaro was most recently the Head of Product at Asana, and before that, she worked as a Product Manager at companies like Google and Microsoft.

There are 18 chapters in the book. It starts with an overview of the project management discipline and how the position differs per firm. There are also chapters on how to gain the necessary experience, professional progression advice, and the previously stated "behind the interview scenes" material. The next chapters go through how to prepare for an interview and how to get an interview.

  1. Decode and Conquer by Lewis C. Lin
Decode and Conquer by Lewis C. Lin

Lewis C. Lin's Decode and Conquer has long been a preferred prep book for individuals applying for product management positions. Lewis Lin, the author, has a long list of accomplishments, including being the Director of Product Management at Microsoft and working at Google, where he was in charge of introducing new AdWords products.

Pros and cons

Decode and Conquer is an excellent primer on product management principles and interview techniques. Even if you don't have a computer science background, it's simple to comprehend. The responses to the sample questions are formatted in a dialogue-style format in the book, which helps the reader get a sense of how these dialogues may proceed in the interview. The frameworks are simple and easy to understand, and they provide an excellent starting point.

However, when it comes to product management, this book is a little basic. Decode and Conquer was one of the earliest books on how to negotiate interviews for what was then a relatively new role — one that has since developed. We recommend reading this book in conjunction with the others on this list.

Authors and content

Lewis C. Lin is a former Microsoft Director of Product Management. He appears on news channels such as Business Insider and The Atlantic in addition to being the CEO of the coaching business Impact Interview.

In just under 200 pages, the book gives a wealth of comprehensive example responses to PM interview questions. Design, estimate, analytical, strategic, and behavioral problems are among the themes covered in the 16 chapters. To ace interviews, you must practice with actual questions. To gain a solid feel of the questions product manager interviewers will ask during product manager interviews, we recommend reading this book, even if it's on the simpler side.

  1. The Product Manager Interview by Lewis C. Lin
The Product Manager Interview by Lewis C. Lin

Despite the fact that this book is intended for applicants for Big Tech positions, it is nevertheless useful for any product management candidate. It underlines the need for product managers to demonstrate technique and systematic thinking.

Pros and cons

This is an excellent resource for people looking for a large number of practice questions to help them prepare for PM interviews. Lin discusses a few easy frameworks for answering PM interview questions in a well-structured manner. There is also thorough example replies to each question, which may really help you get a feeling of how a successful interview dialogue should feel like. However, we believe that the categorizing of questions is rather complicated.

Authors and content

As mentioned earlier, Lin is a former director of product management for Microsoft.

The product management interview, like any kind of competitive job you’d try to get in today, involves extensive preparation, such as management consulting questions or product technical interviews.

The book includes real-world questions and covers a wide range of subjects, including design thinking, estimating, strategy, and the dreaded technical interview. Design, estimate, analytical, strategic, and behavioral problems are among the themes covered in the 16 chapters.

  1. How to Break Into Product Management by brunchwork (Guide)
How to Break Into Product Management by brunchwork (Guide)

It may appear like we're boasting, but the tips we've gleaned from former brunchwork visitors were simply too good not to assemble into an easy-to-follow guide. The brief and thorough pearls of knowledge will assist you in making the shift to PM.

Pros and cons

This quick but effective guide contains tons of excellent tips and tricks for product managers specifically. In our e-book, you’ll learn about the basic skills required to excel as a product manager, as well as the frameworks needed to excel in interviews.

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Authors and content

Brunchwork is a collaborative platform in which top business leaders can help entrepreneurs expand their networking capabilities, learn valuable skills, and take their career to the next level. We offer a wide range of courses that range from strategy and finance to web development and customer research.

How to build product manager abilities, three typical product management frameworks, and product manager resume and cover letter recommendations are all included in the free e-book.

  1. Swipe to Unlock by Neel Mehta, Aditya Agashe, and Parth Detroja
Swipe to Unlock by Neel Mehta, Aditya Agashe, and Parth Detroja

To land a PM offer from Google, Facebook, or Amazon, you must have a fundamental understanding of the IT business and its products. If you're new to product management or don't work in tech, we strongly advise you to read this book to better grasp the business of technology and communicate about product strategy. Other resources that focus on approaches for answering certain kinds of questions, especially interview practice questions should be used in conjunction with it.

Pros and cons

This is an excellent book for candidates who want to improve their understanding of how technology works at top tech organizations and how specific product decisions are made. It simplifies many difficult IT industry topics, frequently with useful images, making them easier to comprehend.

The book's primary flaw is that it isn't designed to directly prepare you for interviews. As a result, you'll have to rely on other resources, such as the books we've selected. People with no prior experience with technology may need to set aside more time to re-read and fully comprehend some of the concepts addressed in the book.

Authors and content

Neel Mehta is a Google Associate Product Manager who formerly worked at Microsoft as a Product Manager. Aditya Agashe is a Microsoft Program Manager and the founder of two start-ups. Parth Detroja is a Facebook Product Manager with prior experience at Amazon, Microsoft, and IBM.

"Swipe to Unlock" is divided into a dozen chapters. The first few chapters discuss topics such as software and the internet, as well as common app business concepts. Cloud computing, security, and big data are among the key technological ideas that fuel the internet and its various uses in the following chapters. The final four chapters examine patterns that are relevant to understanding today's IT company strategy and where it is headed in the future.


In the end, each one of the books outlined above would make for an excellent arsenal of resources for product management interviews.

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