Unleashing the Power of Tails in Product Management Leadership

Aviral Vaid

Hatched by Aviral Vaid

Jan 12, 2024

3 min read


Unleashing the Power of Tails in Product Management Leadership


In the world of business and product management, it's often the exceptional and game-changing events that capture our attention. These "tail events" are the ones that are huge, profitable, famous, or influential. However, what we fail to realize is that these events are actually rare and powerful. In this article, we will explore the significance of tail events and how they can shape the trajectory of a product manager's career. We will also delve into the core qualities and skills required for successful product management leadership, as outlined by Shreyas Doshi.

The Power of Tail Events:

The rule of thumb states that anything significant is the result of a tail event. We tend to focus our attention on the outcomes that are remarkable and impactful, leading us to underestimate their rarity and power. It is crucial to understand that failure is a normal part of the journey towards success. Companies, especially, need to embrace the concept of failing well in order to learn and grow.

Transitioning from PM to PM Leader:

Successful product managers possess three essential qualities: the ability to execute in various environments, good judgment on how to get things done, and a keen eye for what makes a good product. However, to become a product management leader, there are three key skills that need to be developed: product editing, strategic thinking, and influential communication.

Product Editing:

Effective product editing involves asking critical questions to ensure that you are solving the right problem and implementing the best possible solution. By constantly evaluating and refining your product, you can avoid wasting time and resources on initiatives that may not yield the desired results. Embrace the mindset of a product editor to streamline your decision-making process.

Strategic Thinking:

As a product management leader, your focus should extend beyond the immediate tasks at hand. Strategic thinking involves taking a holistic approach to problem-solving and envisioning the long-term impact of your decisions. Look for opportunities to align your product roadmap with the overall business strategy, and constantly evaluate the market landscape to stay ahead of the competition.

Influential Communication:

One of the most crucial skills for a product management leader is the ability to effectively communicate and influence stakeholders at all levels. Whether it's presenting your product vision to the executive team or collaborating with cross-functional teams, your communication skills can make or break your success. Master the art of storytelling to captivate your audience and convey your ideas with clarity and conviction.

Actionable Advice:

  • 1. Embrace failure: Understand that failure is a part of the journey towards success. Learn from your mistakes and use them as stepping stones towards improvement. Encourage a culture of learning from failure within your team and organization.
  • 2. Seek feedback: Actively seek feedback from your team, peers, and superiors. This will help you identify blind spots and areas for improvement. Constructive feedback is invaluable in refining your skills and becoming a better product management leader.
  • 3. Invest in continuous learning: Stay updated with the latest trends, technologies, and best practices in the field of product management. Attend conferences, join industry forums, and engage in continuous learning to broaden your knowledge and sharpen your skills.


In conclusion, the power of tail events in product management cannot be underestimated. By understanding their significance and embracing failure as a part of the journey, product managers can unlock their full potential. Transitioning from a product manager to a product management leader requires the development of core skills such as product editing, strategic thinking, and influential communication. By incorporating these skills into your leadership toolkit and following the actionable advice provided, you can elevate your career and make a lasting impact in the world of product management.

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