Episode 71: Wingin' it as a Project Manager w/Yewande Oyebo

31 August, 2021 / Host: PETRA FÄRM

Insights & Strategies

In the dynamic world of project management, individuals with diverse backgrounds and experiences bring unique perspectives to the table. Yewande Oyebo, a seasoned project manager, joined The Productbeats Show to share her insights on navigating the realm of project management as it relates to product managers. Yewande's journey, from inadvertently becoming a project manager to excelling in the role, offers valuable lessons for both seasoned professionals and aspiring project managers. In this article, we delve into Yewande's key takeaways and explore the distinction between project management and product management.

Who Can Benefit from this Discussion?

Yewande's insights will resonate with individuals in various professional capacities. If you find yourself working in a startup where you're juggling multiple responsibilities, or if you're a product manager trying to delineate your role within a larger organization, this article will provide valuable guidance. Furthermore, if you're new to product management and seek to understand the differences between projects and product management, this discussion will shed light on the topic. Lastly, for those curious about expanding their skill set and contemplating the incorporation of project management principles into their product management role, this article offers relevant insights.

Yewande's Journey: From Product Owner to Project Manager

Yewande's entrepreneurial spirit led her to start an IT consulting business for small startups, which further solidified her passion for product management. Eventually, she joined a German startup as a product owner and later became a project manager, albeit unofficially. Yewande's journey is a testament to the fluidity of roles within organizations and how unexpected transitions can shape one's career path.

Understanding the Difference: Project Management vs. Product Management

To gain clarity on the distinction between project management and product management, Yewande provides a simple analogy using the construction of a house. She highlights that project managers focus on overseeing fixed projects from start to finish, while product managers are responsible for delivering a product that meets the customers' needs. Drawing from her analogy, Yewande emphasizes that project managers are concerned with executing the plan, ensuring milestones are met, and coordinating stakeholders. On the other hand, product managers concentrate on the vision, understanding the stakeholders' requirements, and strategizing how to deliver a product that aligns with the customers' expectations. While there are similarities between the roles, such as requirements gathering, collaboration, and problem-solving, the primary divergence lies in the focus and responsibilities of each role.

Key Lessons Learned

During the show, Yewande shared two essential lessons for successful project management. The first lesson emphasizes the importance of preparation when attending meetings. Yewande advises always coming to meetings with a clear understanding of what you hope to achieve and what the next steps should be. By setting clear objectives and expectations, project managers can optimize their engagement and contribute meaningfully to the project's progress.
The second lesson focuses on managing communication and stakeholders effectively. Yewande highlights the need for project managers to take a step back when feeling overwhelmed and evaluate their communication strategies. By developing a comprehensive communication plan and stakeholder matrix, project managers can streamline communication channels, set boundaries, and ensure that all relevant parties receive necessary updates without feeling overwhelmed.


  • Effective communication is crucial: Yewande Oyebo emphasizes the importance of clear and concise communication in project management. By ensuring all team members have a shared understanding of goals, objectives, and timelines, you can minimize misunderstandings and keep everyone aligned towards success.
  • Stakeholder management drives project success: Yewande shares valuable insights on how to identify and prioritize stakeholders, establish strong relationships, and effectively manage their expectations. Building trust and collaboration with stakeholders is key to obtaining their support and ensuring project success.
  • Flexibility and adaptability are essential: Yewande emphasizes the need for project managers to be flexible and adaptable in the face of unexpected challenges and changes. By embracing a growth mindset and being open to adjustments, you can navigate obstacles more effectively and keep the project on track.

Furthermore, if you're interested in advancing your skills and knowledge in the field of product management, consider exploring The Productbeats Product Management Certification Program. This comprehensive program offers a structured curriculum designed to equip aspiring and experienced product managers with the necessary tools and strategies to excel in their roles. By enrolling in this program, you'll gain valuable insights, practical techniques, and industry best practices that will empower you to drive product success and make a significant impact in your organization. Don't miss this opportunity to enhance your product management expertise and take your career to new heights with The Productbeats Product Management Certification Program.
You might also enjoy watching...

Episode 67: Beyond Firefighting w/Alfonso Fiore

Episode 61: The role of the Product Owner w/Reza Farhang

Episode 33: Product Culture w/Lech Guzowski