I actually started out as a researcher in advertising, but my natural curiosity meant that I was drawn to the technology beneath the trends that we were focusing on. I wanted to learn as much as I could about how the tech worked.
Once I did, product management felt like a natural path because it requires both creative vision and understanding of technical systems. It’s all about how you can make them work together to deliver a product.
The prospect of making great things that can have an impact, and the power to be accountable (with all the difficulties that might come with it). And, of course, that kind of accountability and impact deserves reward, so money is a driver too. I think it is for everyone, but people (especially women) find it awkward to admit, but it’s true and there’s no shame in it.
Not being led by my emotions. I’ve always valued my gut feelings, but as a product manager you have to make decisions based on facts and solid reasoning, more than intuition.
I also felt an added pressure as a woman in a predominantly male industry to ensure that I was taken seriously, and for me that translated to never using my emotions as a tool for decision making.
I want to progress to a leadership position. This would give me the power to cultivate an environment where people feel comfortable taking initiative and no one is scared of making mistakes (as long as they learn from them!).
Try everything, learn from your mistakes and don’t be afraid to ask questions. What you might learn is always more important than what people might think.