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Decode and Conquer: Answers to Product Management Interviews

4.07  ·  Rating details ·  1,142 ratings  ·  54 reviews
Decode and Conquer is the world's first book focused exclusively on product management (PM) interview preparation. The author gives an industry insider's perspective on how to conquer the most difficult PM interview questions. Decode and Conquer will reveal:

Frameworks for tackling product design and metrics questions, including the CIRCLES Method™, AARM Method™, and D
Kindle Edition
Published November 28th 2013 by Impact Interview
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Jun 04, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
If you're a first time Product Manager, or an inexperienced one, this book might more useful. There was nothing earth shattering as far as I was concerned, it was mildly useful as a quick brush up on items to remember to mention.

The other issue is that this book is more about an interview in which you would be asked to go through your process beginning to end, rather than a behavioral interview. In my experience most companies seem to be moving in favor of more behavioral questions, rather than
Boni Aditya
Oct 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is one of the best books written about, the approach and attitude required to crack the product Management Interviews. The author does not give you free fish, but teaches how to fish. Which is the important distinction and the competitive advantage of this book. This book differs from all the other blogs on the internet and from other books which contain 1000+ questions for PM interviews, by establishing a clear framework, required to attack the question, break it up into pieces and then pr ...more
Sep 23, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition

I enjoyed this book, I gather ideas and thought about how to respond some questions so it serves its purpose. The thing I didn’t enjoy at times, was the length of some answers some details that only a google search on the specific topic could provide, I get that we should be prepared and do research before an interview but it was too much. I sprinted through a lot of content because of this.
Oliver Pecha
Jan 20, 2020 rated it really liked it
The "answers" part of the title says it all. Good to read if you are about to go through structured interviews at Big Tech. A lot of the answers are unimpressive or even weak, yet they follow useful patterns to beef up your own arsenal. ...more
Newton Piccone
Oct 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This book was recommended to my by a mentor and it worked wonders! The best book to help prep for a PM role interview. Lin breaks it down with examples and easy to understand references. I would recommend this to anyone interviewing in product management.
Pankaj Mamde
May 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Great book to understand all aspects of PM interviews.
Niki Agrawal
Jul 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
Good book to skim before PM interviews, but not as thorough or comprehensive as "Cracking the PM Interview" by Gayle McDowell, which is a must-have when interviewing.

This book will certainly give you more confidence in answering questions and playing to your strengths. It's a great and fun weekend read, but the best way to make the most of the book is by answering the interview questions yourself before looking at responses. Highly recommend if you need to brush up on PM interviewing, and espec
Ajay Kumar
Feb 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
I read this book as someone who is hiring product managers (and not someone who's looking for a job). It's a quick and good read for my type of reader. Would recommend. ...more
Aklesh Padhy
Dec 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Although I have had previous reviews about the book, the book provides a fair analysis of some common PM interview questions. It gives an idea about how to tackle interview questions for first time PMs. But, wait! Don't expect something ground-breaking. This book might have been more useful, had it also shared the day to day responsibilities of a PM and some tricks and bits of handling challenging PM situations. ...more
Robert Calangiu
Jan 04, 2019 rated it really liked it
It took my a long time to finally read it through. Although it offers some insights that are useful for day-to-day PM job I think it doesn't have enough consistency, some examples and practice questions/answers are a bit forced and it doesn't offer enough guidance on what would be a really great answer to the questions. ...more
Ostap Andrusiv
Dec 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: top-to-read
Good book to prepare for general PM interviews. It provides a good way to structure your knowledge. Think of software engineer's certification if you ever passed it.

Most of the methods mentioned in the book are common sense, but can be useful in a stressful time-constrained interview environment.

Bottom line: 5, if you are going through PM interviews.
Eryn Rasmussen
Jun 06, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Very very helpful in preparation for interviews. I read this a couple times over and felt very prepared on product design questions. The example interview questions were very helpful in understanding the process, rather than memorizing answers. I'm going to recommend this to all of my current coworkers too to help make current projects more impactful. I wish I read this years ago ...more
Wesley Robert Zurovec
D&C is a nice primer for what to expect in a product management interview. The book does not teach the underlying concepts that are needed to get the job, but rather it advises on how to communicate what you already know in a concise format. It is a good source for a few case questions, though I believe there are other LL books out there that are geared more around example questions.
May 20, 2017 rated it it was ok
Didn't meet my expectation. Full of made up non-compelling techniques claiming he's inventing them with a silly ™ mark.

It just helped brainstorming ideas for a few questions.

I'd rather recommend Cracking the PM Interview which is really excellent and comprehensive.
Monica Ionita
Oct 27, 2017 rated it really liked it
As a new product manager, I find this book a good introduction to the expectations an employer has from a candidate - and I appreciate offering examples of both good and poor (in a less obvious way) answers
Laura Kaufman
Mar 05, 2018 rated it liked it
Not that useful tbh because it gives too many examples of bad interviews. I get that it's important to know what not to do, but there are way too many bad interviews. I want examples of good interviews! ...more
Jacky Liang
Oct 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Because of this book, I was able to successfully transition from engineering to product management in the Bay Area. This + Cracking the PM Interview were bar none the two most important resources for cracking the product management interview.

Thank you Lewis, thank you!
Li Cai
Apr 30, 2019 rated it really liked it
Excellent book for all PMs who are preparing themselves for an interview OR for interviewers preparing questions for potential candidates.

Good points are showing some good and bad examples of answers.
Narayana Mukkala
Dec 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing
An excellent read for those who want to understand the framework to use for better product sense or problem-solving.

Also, a great book to read if you are interviewing for Product Management roles irrespective of one being a beginner or advanced.
Andreas Karampatzakis
Apr 19, 2020 rated it really liked it
The book presents easy-to-follow frameworks to articulate problem solving approaches. A must-read for those applying for a job for the first time. An easy read as a refresher to more experienced product managers.
Jul 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Great book to prepare to a PM interview.

A lot of exercises with answers and helps to prepare on questions about yourself.
Aug 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
Helpful. Some good general takeaways for PM interviews as well as easy to follow examples
Sandeep Hejmadi
Oct 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Excellent read!

Amazingly crisp, concise and to-the-point!

Very well written book that captures the essence of Product Management!

Would definitely recommend this book to current as well as aspiring Product Managers
Li Li
Nov 21, 2017 rated it liked it
This is book for a quick read while you are waiting at the airport... It touches on some very basic ideas of product management, but it does not go in much depth and length.
Vibhor Rampal
Jan 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Very good

Amazin read for follow product management. Very engaging for aspirin product manager. Really helped me understand various facets of products
Samir Majhi
May 04, 2018 rated it it was ok
Good collection of questions. But the way he answered them weren't up to the mark. ...more
Jul 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Wanna be a PM? Read This

Incredible prep material for those looking to transition to the Product Management world. Thanks so much, Lin. This is insanely great and helpful.
Oct 06, 2018 rated it liked it
Disappointed. I guess it’s more related to deprecated examples and editorial styles (fake dialogs, including « hum » and « ha ».
Would rather have more questions that take less pages.
Oct 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Priceless guide when prepping for PM interview, but also very helpful even without the interview to broaden your perspective
Aug 23, 2019 rated it liked it
Solid information, and have to appreciate the full question coverage. I also liked the colloquial critique following the question.
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