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Looking for a product coach? Start here to find out what you need to knowLooking for a product coach? Start here to find out what you need to knowLooking for a product coach? Start here to find out what you need to know

Looking for a product coach? Start here to find out what you need to know

Looking for a product coach can be an intimidating task. If you’re considering hiring a product coach, you likely have an important problem you want to solve. So you want to find the right person with the right skills and experience that you can be sure will deliver good value for you.

There are a plethora of different definitions of what a product coach is, and the exact right coach for you will depend on a wide range of factors, including the problem you are looking to solve and how well-defined that challenge is.

Luckily, help is at hand. We’ve compiled all our posts about product coaching into this handy guide with detailed articles on most of the topics you’ll need to understand to make the best choice about who you want to work with.

So, whether you’re trying to find your first product coach or have worked with a coach before, there will be something here to help you find a great match with your next product coach. We’ve even organized them into three simple steps to help you with your search for the perfect product coach.

1. Understand what a product coach is and what they do

Knowing what a product coach is and what they do is a seemingly obvious start point, but you’d be surprised at how many slightly different definitions and opinions are out there.

We define a product coach as follows:

A product coach is an experienced product expert who works with product managers and product leaders to help them get unstuck and deliver on their goals at work.

These articles should help you get a detailed understanding of product coaching and its potential benefits for you.

What is a product coach and do I need one?

This article covers:

  • What product coaching is
  • Common types of product coach and what they do
  • Why a product coach is important
  • What a product coach actually does (how they work)
  • How to tell whether you need a product coach
  • How product coaches usually charge for their services
  • How a product coach fits with a product team
  • What skills and experience to look for in a product coach

Read the article here

How can my business benefit from a product coach?

If you’re considering getting product coaching for your team or need to make a business case to secure funding for your product coaching, this article is for you. It covers:

  • The difference between mentoring, coaching and training
  • The four key tangible benefits of product coaching for a business
  • The common alternatives to hiring a product coach
  • The relative costs of engaging a product coach

Read the article here

2. Know what you want from your product coach

So, if you’ve got a good understanding of what a product coach is and what they do, the next step is being really clear on what you want. These articles are about understanding what you want to get out of your relationship with a coach and preparing effectively to meet coaches.

How to write an effective personal vision statement

If you’re not sure what you want to get out of product coaching, being clear on your personal vision is a great place to start. You can do this with a product coach or use the steps in this article to draft your personal vision statement so you know what it is that you want a coach to help you with. This article covers:

  • What a personal vision statement is
  • How to write a personal vision statement
  • How to evaluate whether you’ve got your statement right

Read the article here

Are you ready for product coaching?

Coaching is a two-way activity. The more prepared you are, the more you’ll get out of it. This article gives you three simple steps you can use to get the most from your coaching sessions or introductory calls with product coaches.

Read the article here

3. Find the great product coach (or alternative solution) for you

Now you know what a product coach is, what they do, and whether a product coach is a good fit for your challenges, you’ll be looking to actually engage with a product coach or find an alternative solution. These articles cover how to find and choose a product coach, or a common alternative like a mentor or self-coaching.

How to find your perfect product coach

If you’ve decided product coaching is the right way to solve your challenge. This article gives you a simple process to:

  • Know what you want from a coach
  • Set criteria you can use to choose the right coach
  • Find potential coaches
  • Decide which to work with

Read the article here

What makes a great product coach?

If you’re new to product coaching and want some examples of what good looks like, the five criteria in this article will give you a great starting point to make your decisions on who to work with.

Read the article here

How a product management mentor can help you further your career

You may be thinking that a mentor suits your needs better than a coach. If that’s the case, this article will be helpful to you. It covers:

  • What a mentor is and how they are different to a coach
  • When to chose mentoring, product coaching or online courses to help with your challenges
  • Why a mentor is important
  • Five ways a mentor can help you further your career
  • Five tips to help you get the most out of your time with your mentor

Read the article here

How to coach yourself

With some small challenges, you can use the principles of coaching to solve them yourself. In this article, we go through how you can use our Lean Coaching Canvas to solve your own challenges and help develop your team.

If you like the idea of self-coaching, you can also check out this list of 20 product coaching questions to help you get unstuck.

Read the article here

More questions? Ask us

If you’ve got a question about product coaching and can’t find the answer here. Please get in contact and ask us. We’ll be happy to help with an answer and we might write it up into an article to help other product people make progress with their problems.

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Wil Procter
Wil Procter

Head of Learning at The Product Refinery, Wil has been working in digital learning since the early 2000s designing digital learning experiences and building learning teams to solve the interesting problems that arise when learning and technology meet.

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