Product Management

7 Reasons Why Product Management Fails

A deep dive into the reasons why the PM function is unintentionally set up for failure by businesses and how they can avoid it.

Rameez Kakodker
12 min readMay 14, 2022
Photo by Elizabeth Villalta on Unsplash

Many product managers I speak to have similar complaints about support from business. While most of those voices hail from corporate PM functions, there are a few from the startup world too. Add to that the PM function is usually pushed under technology or marketing, support issues would inevitably creep up eventually.

There are things that business or management does wrong by the PM functions. They range from slight oversights to blatant or intentional errors in the ways of working of the organization.

This article, therefore, is a prioritized list of these errors committed by business leaders/management, setting the PM function for failure. If you are a PM, you can use this list to categorize your pain points and highlight them to upper management.

Additionally, this list applies to both large & small-scale PM teams — the distinction being that in large-scale PM teams, there are hierarchies within the function that have a lower execution to strategy ratio, the higher you go. This can also be used by operations, marketing, and other functions when interacting with the PM function at or near the grass-root level.

Note: this may be implied, but I’m calling out the fact that whenever I’m referring to you, I’m referring to you as the business.

1. Misunderstanding the Product function

Most businesses end up treating the Product function as a Project Management function. A one-way street of requirements execution.

In reality, the product function is a two-way street, a constant dialogue between the two functions. PMs are not SMEs who’ll turn around with timelines and clear yes and no answers. They’re the ones who’ll investigate a hunch, identify opportunities and present a path forward to achieve business objectives. This might seem redundant, but it untangles the complexities of predicting the future — which is essentially what you’re trying to do as a business.



Rameez Kakodker

100+ Articles on Product, Design & Tech | Top Writer in Design | Simplifying complexities at Majid Al Futtaim |