An update on our Pilot program

It's been a while since you’ve heard from us. Suffice it to say, we’ve been super busy with the career.pm pilot program. In this post, I’d like to give you an update on the pilot, including key learnings, and hint at some of the exciting things we’ll be doing in the next few months to launch career.pm.

Firstly, the primary goal of the three-month pilot was to learn how to apply our career accelerating methods in the most effective way possible. I’m happy to report that we’ve learned an incredible amount so far and our primary assumptions about what PMs need to be more strategic about their careers have been largely validated. More on that in a moment.

In terms of participation, we have 11 pilot "members"; 7 are practicing PMs, 4 are "aspiring" PMs. They come from mostly Central Europe and North America and are extremely diverse in terms of their backgrounds, industries served and seniority (we have a couple of folks at the director-level). We’ve done "Initial Consultations" with all of them and have done around 20 coaching sessions.

As I said, we’ve learned a ton. Here are three of our key learnings:

1. Our hypothesis that very few PMs have a career plan has been validated.

Only 1 of the people in the program had done the level of preparation I’d consider a career plan. In this case, she has a very specific, short-term goal. The other practicing PMs had general thoughts about what they wanted to achieve but didn’t have a clear timeline or set of activities to get them there.

2. Having a career plan is highly motivational

We have a process for creating a "Career Roadmap" that starts by defining a "Career Motivation" comprising a vision, goals, objectives and a strategy. It’s very rewarding to see the impact this simple act of planning has on our members. I stop short of saying having a plan is "half the battle", but it is definitely a big step toward accelerating a PM career.

3. Managing coaching at scale is a fascinating problem

We find coaching as one of the most important parts of our offering (our online courses, included in the program, another). However, eventually providing highly effective coaching for hundreds or thousands of people will be a challenge along multiple dimensions. We’ll need to find talented, experienced people and manage highly personal relationships in a way that provides consistency and market-leading value to our members.

As we move forward, we’ll announce additions to our offering such as new online courses and exciting partnerships for third-party services and training. We’ll also introduce coaching and learning packages targeting different needs. Our goal is to launch Q1 2020.

Now that the pilot is launched and running smoothly, we’ll try to be more regular in our communication with you. We’re are extremely encouraged by the outcomes from the pilot and super excited about taking this journey with you.