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How do you measure your own success in your role? How much have those performance indicators evolved as you grew within your role?

5 Answers
Christy Roach
Christy Roach
AssemblyAI VP of MarketingOctober 8

This has changed a ton as my career has progressed and continues to evolve as I get better at my job. What I measure myself on today is very different than what I’ll measure myself on in 3-4 years, and the key is being able to make those mental shifts and not measuring your current role by the same standards you measured yourself on in previous roles.

Today I measure myself on the following:

  • Team engagement: As a leader, I am only as good as my team is. Before I look at their output, I want to look at how they feel at work. I can only be successful if I’m leading a team that is fulfilled, engaged, and happy in their job. At Envoy we do a quarterly engagement survey, but we also do weekly “pulse checks” to see what the team’s engagement is and what their workload looks like. Those scores tell me if I’m leading a high performing, engaged team, or if there’s something amiss. 
  • % of team OKRs hit: I have my own personal OKRs to hit and those continue to help me measure my success but, as I’ve transitioned into leadership, I’ve also measured myself on how my team is progressing towards their OKRs. It’s not up to me to micro-manage their work or take their OKRs into my own hands, but it is up to me to make sure they have the support, feedback, motivation, and guidance they need to hit those OKRs. If we’re missing multiple OKRs on my team, we’ve either set the wrong goals or the team doesn’t have what they need to succeed, both of which reflect on my performance. 
  • Speed at which we’re able to get work done: I don’t like looking at the sheer output of my team because I don’t believe that more activity always means better work. In many cases, we need to do fewer things, better. But, I do want to look at our team’s velocity to see if the team is growing in their ability to get work done and moving more quickly towards their goals because of the processes and systems I’ve put in place to help them. If a team member gets stuck or blocked, I need to fix that. 
  • Feedback from other teams: The members of my team are extremely cross-functional, as am I. I look for feedback from my sales, CS, product, and marketing counterparts to tell me if I’m leading a team that is working well with others, making connections, and contributing to the business. Every time I hear that someone on my team is doing an awesome job or is great to work with, I feel pride in them and in the team I’ve built. 
  • Cross-functional alignment: This is the one that’s really driven by me. I measure myself on how aligned I am with other leaders and the way I’m able to drive buy-in across sales, product, and more to create a successful product and GTM strategy. If we aren’t aligned at the top, our teams will not be set up for success
  • Revenue and customer sentiment: I don’t impact these as directly as I used to, but I do look at the revenue that’s driven from my team’s launches and the customer sentiment via NPS and feedback we hear as a way to measure if we’re creating compelling messaging, driving successful launches and, ultimately, bringing value to our customers and to the business.

How this has changed over time:
I used to look very closely at the metrics I knew I drove. As an IC PMM, that was leads sent to the sales team, revenue generated from launches, product adoption, and customer feedback. As a group product marketing manager, I looked at the metrics or line of business that my team specifically drove. As I’ve gotten more senior, those individual metrics are owned by members of my team, not me. It’s up to me to look at the success of the product as a whole and, more importantly, the success of my team as an indicator of whether or not I’m succeeding as a leader. It can be hard to remove yourself from the day-to-day, there are times that I really miss doing some of the tactical work and have to pull myself back, but shifting how I think about my own success has been key in making sure I’m leading the team well.

2719 Views
Akshay Kerkar
Akshay Kerkar
Stripe Head of Product Marketing, Emerging ProductsDecember 22

Success should be measured based on impact to the org, and in B2B Marketing that really means pipeline (and ultimately conversion to revenue). PMMs that take this “full stack” approach to our craft will not only maximize their ability to have meaningful impact at their company, but will also put themselves in a position to acquire skills along the way to set themselves up for leadership positions in the future (whether that’s CMO or GM of a business line).

The challenging part here is that PMM tends to be defined differently in different organizations, with some companies looking at the role a lot more tactically. So it’s really important to do your due diligence and choose carefully to ensure that both the organization and PMM leadership recognize the value of PMM and encourage individual PMMs to focus on impact.

1386 Views
Vidya Drego
Vidya Drego
SmithRx VP of MarketingJanuary 19

Product Marketing is challenging because the function influences many metrics but isn't normally the owner of those metrics. Exciting new deal closed? There's usually a PMM that helped along the way although it's sales' win. Cool new product feature launched? Definitely a PMM in the mix, but it's the Product team's achievement. As a PMM, you have to be confident about your own contributions and not the type of person who needs complete ownership of a metric. 

Often, for myself, I like to make sure I have measures that help me understand how i've improved or advanced my skills as well as metrics that help me gauge my impact to the business. The former could like reducing cycles of review of messaging because you've committed to improving your writing skills or starting a program or process that helps solve a common challenge more efficiently. The latter depends largely on the organization and how PMM is aligned. If you're at a company where PMM helps shape product roadmap and adoption, how you test fit, launch, and drive adoption or usage could be your most important metric. If you're scaling an existing product, you may be looking at increasing average sales price (ASP) or improving the sales process or materials in some way.

As I've evolved within PMM, more of my performance indicators are business metrics because my organization is expected to deliver for sales and/or product.

670 Views
Jon Rooney
Jon Rooney
Unity Vice President Product MarketingAugust 23

As a product marketer, especially as you grow in role and become more senior, measurement of success moves beyond tasks and deliverables to align lock-step with the other GTM functions like sales, customer success and growth/demand generation. Especially once a company has established product-market fit and developed a repeatable GTM motion to scale the business (whether it's product-led-growth (PLG) or traditional direct sales), making sure there's a clear understanding of both the top-level GTM goals (revenue growth, net retention, addressing new use cases and buying centers) and the role each function plays to meet those goals is critical. That way, as the PMM leader, I can contribute to revenue by measuring and managing the parts of the process that the product marketing team owns - whether that's top-of-the-funnel work like messaging for digital campaigns and driving third-party validation like Gartner Magic Quadrant and Forrester Wave placement or post-opportunity creation work like the development and enablement of a prospect demo/workshop to drive an oppty to close. The GTM leadership team should have a shared understanding of what everyone does to win deals - then the hard part is making sure you can track/measure them. Make the marketing operations (MOPs) and sales operations folks your best friends, put in the extra work so you understand how they're looking at the business and ensure PMM activities are part of the equasion.

444 Views
Jason Perocho
Jason Perocho
Amperity SVP, Head of MarketingDecember 21

I measure my success in two ways equally:

  1. Company/Business Unit KPIs: Product marketing is a tough job because so much of our success depends on another team applying our messaging successfully in their work. If my team were doing its job correctly, we would have enabled our product, marketing, sales, and customer success to hit their pipeline, sales, and adoption numbers. My area of responsibility has grown over time by taking on more products and/or regions to grow the aforementioned KPIs.

  2. Direct Report Growth: I believe the only way I can be successful is to ensure my direct reports are growing. If they're not growing toward their career, financial, or life objective, then that means I'm probably not getting the most out of them. I like to have monthly career conversation to outline short, medium, and "North Stars", then use them to create "KPIs" to measure if I am growing them. In my mind, there are thousands of different ways to solve a business problem. I try and find the way that's best aligned to a direct report's strengths and growth goals to get the most out of them.

391 Views
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