Career Stories: Javier Bello Medina, MBA ’24 – Part 2: Resources and Guidance to Pivot into Product Management

By Javier Bello Medina, MBA ’24

See Part 1 for my key lessons learned navigating a career pivot into product management.

I decided I want to pursue PM! What do I do now? 

The below items are ideal to do September-October.

  1. Start narrowing down the companies you want to apply to.
    • Review “Notes” and “Recruiting Activity” in the Company file on Career Central.
    • Set up email alerts for companies or roles – do not rely only on Career Central!
    • Don’t search for jobs only on LinkedIn and Career Central. If you already know the companies you want to apply to, have the quick link in your browser and try to search directly there. 
  2. Reach out to 2Y students and alumni to learn about their company’s PM responsibilities and culture. Also, be on the lookout for formal PM Club Coffee Chats/Office Hours in mid-October.
  3. Iterate and refine your resume (PM Club Resume Reviews and Resume Reviews with CDO Career Advisors).

High-Level Timeline for PM/Tech Internships:

  • OCTOBER: Company Presentations & Coffee Chats Begin (especially for big tech & larger companies)
  • LATE OCT/DIC: Applications Begin to be Due (resume, occasionally a cover letter (often optional)) – IMPORTANT: Most applications are rolling – the sooner you apply, the better.
  • DEC/FEB: Interviews Start (plan your IAP accordingly!)
  • MAR/JUN: Job Postings/Interviews Keep Coming In (smaller companies & startups recruiting continues until late May)

Important Resources:

Key Events to Get Involved In:

  • PM Lab: Registrations in November for company matching. Four weeks in January working full-time (unpaid) as a Product Manager. 
  • Digital Product Management (Lecture): Guaranteed spot if you register for the PM Lab. Access to industry-leading speakers.
  • PM Conference
  • Silicon Valley Study Tour: Helps familiarize yourself with MIT Sloan’s Bay Area Alumni network and network with companies.

Clubs to Join:

Books/Articles of Interest:

I have an interview! What do I do now? 

  1. Breathe and relax, everything is going to be fine! (I recommend meditation to better handle interview pressure.)
  2. Research the company – Very important: This sounds obvious but you would be surprised at how many people show up to an interview knowing almost nothing about the company. Conduct decent research of the company, know their recent news, and understand their recent strategies. Most of them don’t expect you to be a FAN of their company, but they want you to be interested and prepared.
  3. Google search “PM + Interview + (company name) + Glassdoor”  – It will give you a summary of the difficulty level of the interview, and you will have a lot of information about people sharing the questions they had, summarizing their overall experience, and whether they received an offer or not. 
  4. Utilize Exponent for interview help! – Exponent has specific courses and articles for most of the big Tech companies. Even if you are applying to smaller companies, the way of thinking is similar. Watch some sample PM interview videos, and subscribe for a few mock interviews.
  5. PRACTICE! – This is the moment to ask two of your close friends (those who will give you accurate constructive feedback) to interview you. They can use the Glassdoor or Exponent sample questions you explored previously.
By MIT Sloan CDO