The Product Manager is responsible for developing and executing product strategy plans that deliver new innovative solutions, achieve sales objectives and strategically position Makita USA in a leadership role. This position requires a thorough understanding of the market, competition, trades, end user’s needs, applications, business trends, channels of distribution and product price positioning for their respective category. This individual will be a product leader working cross-functionally to deliver their category vision and strategy for Makita USA.
Essential Job Duties
Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
- Manage product development portfolio strategies to include new product development roadmaps and existing product portfolios to align with the company’s vison and objectives.
- Understand product life cycles to create planning process and timelines to develop new products.
- Manage the overall product development process from ideation to processing the necessary steps and approvals to the implementation and product launch.
- Thoroughly understands primary applications for all related products and accessories while understanding the current competitor’s product’s strengths, weaknesses assortments and marketing strategies.
- Have complete knowledge and assessment of the market, both targeting users and dealer requirements including current trends, size of the user segments, building code requirements, market opportunities, geographical strengths to develop strategies to position and develop products that lead the market.
- Establish and employ product innovation positioning with attribute planning that articulates the value proposition to our targeted users.
- Drive market and competitive analysis to define clear product differentiation and positioning.
- Lead/support cross functional (research) development teams that may include engineering, sales, marketing, logistics, purchasing, outside research firms and others to further develop new/refreshing products and/or promotional tactics.
- Responsible to increase category revenue and profit by developing new products, enhancing products/solutions, implementing promotional activity and developing/creating sales aids to further build user awareness and brand energy.
- Timely execution of marketing plans and effectively communicates critical information throughout all facets of the organization.
- Develop promotional strategies along with the marketing team for new and sustaining products which reinforce the Brand and value to both targeted users and dealers.
- Monitor workflow, milestones and processes to ensure timelines and deadline are achieved.
- Build and maintain category competitor and user database to aid in gaining knowledge and customer preferences.
- Responsible for continually driving suggestions, contributions, plans, and solutions.
- Deliver product presentations to key customers, trade press and attend required tradeshows.
- Determine annual forecasts and sales budgets for related product categories.
- Strong time management, project management and strategic planning skills while having a clear vision of the “big picture”.
- Support the quality improvement process by working closely with the QC team by assisting in field, service and user level.
- Develop product knowledge programs to help educate the sales team, customer service department, service centers and dealer’s sales employees.
- Be able to manage, mentor, coach and lead staff in developing skill sets that support departmental succession planning.
- Continue to be challenged and motivated to always be the best in the industry and always looking for ways to deliver winning results.
- Constantly implement creative, consistent vehicles that fully support the company’s prime objectives with regards to professional users, products and focus.
- Responsible for monthly reports that contain progress on related projects, sales analysis and/or any relevant information concerning the market trends and developments.
Please note this job description is not designed to cover or contain a comprehensive listing of activities, duties or responsibilities that are required of the employee for this job. Duties, responsibilities and activities may change at any time with or without notice.
- Analytical - Collects and researches data; Uses intuition and experience to complement data; Designs work flows and procedures.
- Design - Generates creative solutions; Translates concepts and information into images; Uses feedback to modify designs; Demonstrates attention to detail.
- Problem Solving - Identifies and resolves problems in a timely manner; Gathers and analyzes information skillfully; Develops alternative solutions; Works well in group problem solving situations; Uses reason even when dealing with emotional topics.
- Project Management - Develops project plans; Coordinates projects; Communicates changes and progress; Completes projects on time and budget; Manages project team activities.
- Technical Skills - Assesses own strengths and weaknesses; Pursues training and development opportunities; Strives to continuously build knowledge and skills; Shares expertise with others.
- Customer Service - Manages difficult or emotional customer situations; Responds promptly to customer needs; Solicits customer feedback to improve service; Responds to requests for service and assistance; Meets commitments.
- Interpersonal Skills - Focuses on solving conflict, not blaming; Maintains confidentiality; Listens to others without interrupting; Keeps emotions under control.
- Oral Communication - Speaks clearly and persuasively in positive or negative situations; Listens and gets clarification; Responds well to questions; Demonstrates group presentation skills; Participates in meetings.
- Written Communication - Writes clearly and informatively; Edits work for spelling and grammar; Varies writing style to meet needs; Presents numerical data effectively; Able to read and interpret written information.
- Teamwork - Exhibits objectivity and openness to others' views; Contributes to building a positive team spirit; Supports everyone's efforts to succeed.
- Visionary Leadership - Displays passion and optimism; Inspires respect and trust; Mobilizes others to fulfill the vision.
- Change Management - Develops workable implementation plans; Communicates changes effectively; Builds commitment and overcomes resistance; Prepares and supports those affected by change; Monitors transition and evaluates results.
- Leadership - Exhibits confidence in self and others; Inspires and motivates others to perform well; Effectively influences actions and opinions of others.
- Quality Management - Looks for ways to improve and promote quality; Demonstrates accuracy and thoroughness.
- Business Acumen - Understands business implications of decisions; Displays orientation to profitability; Demonstrates knowledge of market and competition; Aligns work with strategic goals.
- Cost Consciousness - Works within approved budget; Develops and implements cost saving measures; Conserves organizational resources.
- Diversity - Demonstrates knowledge of EEO policy; Shows respect and sensitivity for cultural differences; Educates others on the value of diversity; Promotes a harassment-free environment; Builds a diverse workforce.
- Ethics - Treats people with respect; Keeps commitments; Inspires the trust of others; Works with integrity and ethically; Upholds organizational values.
- Organizational Support - Follows policies and procedures; Completes administrative tasks correctly and on time; Supports organization's goals and values; Supports affirmative action and respects diversity.
- Strategic Thinking - Develops strategies to achieve organizational goals; Understands organization's strengths & weaknesses; Adapts strategy to changing conditions.
- Judgement - Displays willingness to make decisions; Exhibits sound and accurate judgment; Supports and explains reasoning for decisions; Includes appropriate people in decision-making process; Makes timely decisions.
- Motivation - Sets and achieves challenging goals; Demonstrates persistence and overcomes obstacles; Measures self against standard of excellence; Takes calculated risks to accomplish goals.
- Planning/Organizing - Prioritizes and plans work activities; Uses time efficiently; Plans for additional resources; Sets goals and objectives; Develops realistic action plans.
- Professionalism - Approaches others in a tactful manner; Reacts well under pressure; Treats others with respect and consideration regardless of their status or position; Accepts responsibility for own actions; Follows through on commitments.
- Quality - Demonstrates accuracy and thoroughness; Looks for ways to improve and promote quality; Applies feedback to improve performance; Monitors own work to ensure quality.
- Quantity - Meets productivity standards; Completes work in timely manner; Strives to increase productivity; Works quickly.
- Safety and Security - Observes safety and security procedures; Determines appropriate action beyond guidelines; Reports potentially unsafe conditions.
- Adaptability - Manages competing demands; Changes approach or method to best fit the situation; Able to deal with frequent change, delays, or unexpected events.
- Attendance/Punctuality - Is consistently at work and on time; Ensures work responsibilities are covered when absent; Arrives at meetings and appointments on time.
- Dependability - Follows instructions, responds to management direction; Takes responsibility for own actions; Keeps commitments; Commits to long hours of work when necessary to reach goals; Completes tasks on time or notifies appropriate person with an alternate plan.
- Initiative - Undertakes self-development activities; Seeks increased responsibilities; Takes independent actions and calculated risks; Looks for and takes advantage of opportunities.
- Innovation - Meets challenges with resourcefulness; Generates suggestions for improving work; Develops innovative approaches and ideas; Presents ideas and information in a manner that gets others' attention.
- Language Skills: Ability to read, analyze, and interpret general business periodicals, professional journals, technical procedures, or governmental regulations. Ability to write reports, business correspondence, and procedure manuals. Ability to effectively present information and respond to questions from groups of managers, clients, customers, and the general public.
- Mathematical Skills: Ability to calculate figures and amounts such as discounts, interest, commissions, proportions, percentages, area, circumference, and volume. Ability to apply concepts of basic algebra and geometry.
- Reasoning Ability: Ability to apply common sense understanding to carry out instructions furnished in written, oral, or diagram form. Ability to deal with problems involving several concrete variables in standardized situations.
- Computer Skills: To perform this job successfully, an individual should have knowledge of Microsoft Outlook Contact Management systems; Microsoft Excel Spreadsheet software knowledge is a must and all other software programs related to MS Office Suite.
- Valid Driver’s license with a safe driving history.
- Marketing experience, including advertising, copy development, working with graphic designers, etc.
- Product management experience, including launching products, ideally in a related industry, such as construction or building products.
- Strong familiarity with power tools, perhaps as a contractor or trades professional, or at a manufacturer or retailer of power tools.
This position does have supervisory responsibilities.
This position will sometimes work in an open office setting that is quiet, fast paced, fosters continuous learning while operating under high demand/volume. This role routinely uses standard office equipment such as computers, phones, photocopiers, filing cabinets and fax machines.
70% travel may be required for this position, which includes overnight stays in some cities where events are being held.
Education and/or Experience Desired
- Bachelor’s Degree from a college or university, or equivalent professional institution.
- Master’s Degree in Marketing, Business or related discipline preferred.
- We also will consider non-degreed candidates with significant and highly relevant experience.
- 5+ years in product management or similar industry experience.
- Previous experience with both retail and distribution channels is preferred.
The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
- Required to regularly use hands to finger, handle or feel; reach with hands and arms; and talk or hear.
- Required to regularly stand; walk; and stoop, bend or reach above head.
- Required to frequently sit.
- May be required to occasionally lift, push or pull up to 75 pounds.
- Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, distance vision, color vision, peripheral vision, depth perception and ability to adjust focus.
- Able to ascend and descend stairs.
- Continuously reach out to sort miscellaneous items.
- Physically & mentally able to work in an environment that may be subjected to strict deadline and multiple projects.
- May be subjected to working extended and/or irregular hours.
This description is based on management's assessment of the requirements and functions of the job as of the date this description was prepared. It is a general guideline for managers and employees, but it does not intend to be an exhaustive list of all of the elements of the job. Management reserves the right to modify the description at any time, or to vary the duties and responsibilities of the job on a temporary or indefinite basis to meet production, scheduling or staffing needs.
Equal Opportunity Statement
The Company is an equal opportunity employer and makes employment decisions on the basis of merit. Company policy prohibits discrimination based on race, color, creed, sex, religion, marital status, age, gender, national origin, ancestry, physical disability (including HIV and AIDS), mental disability, veteran status, military service, pregnancy, childbirth or related medical condition, genetic information, medical (including genetic characteristics or cancer diagnosis), actual or perceived sexual orientation, or any consideration protected by federal, state or local laws. All such discrimination is prohibited. Additionally, the Company will provide registered domestic partners with all rights and benefits as required by Law. The Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008 (GINA) prohibits employers from requesting or requiring genetic information of an individual or family member of the individual. The Company is committed to complying with all applicable laws providing equal employment opportunities.