The Ultimate Dictionary for Product Managers

There’s a lot to know as a PM. Here’s a cheat sheet of terms that are helpful to know:

Product Management

APM: Apprentice Product Manager or Associate Product Manager. This is often the first role an aspiring PM will get.

Agile development: A flexible and iterative approach to product development that focuses on delivering working software quickly and continuously.

Framework: A set of steps used to standardize and simplify how to approach a problem.

Market analysis: The process of gathering, analyzing, and interpreting information about a market, its competitors, and its customers.

Minimum viable product (MVP): A version of a product with the minimum set of features necessary to validate a product concept with early customers.

Product backlog: A prioritized list of features and user stories that the product team plans to implement in the future.

Product roadmap: A high-level, strategic document that outlines the vision for a product and the plans for its development and release.

Scrum: A framework for agile development that involves short, iterative cycles called “sprints” and a set of roles, meetings, and artifacts.

Sprint planning: A meeting that takes place at the beginning of a sprint in which the team plans and estimates the work to be completed during the sprint.

Software Development (Engineering)

Algorithm: a set of instructions for solving a problem or accomplishing a task.

API (Application Programming Interface): a set of protocols, routines, and tools for building software and applications.

Backlog: The list of projects or tasks that are waiting to be worked on.

Database: a structured collection of data stored and accessed electronically.

Debugging: the process of identifying and fixing errors in a program’s source code.

GIT: Often refers to Github, but it is a more broad term referring to any software version control system.

Release planning: The process of determining when and how new features and functionality will be released to users.

Repository (Repo): Where the code is stored.

Retrospective (Retro): A structured meeting that gives teams time to reflect on a particular project.

User Experience Design (UX)

User personas: Detailed profiles that represent the different types of users who will use a product, including their goals, motivations, and behavior.

User stories: Short, specific descriptions of the desired functionality or feature of a product, written from the perspective of the user.


Basis points (bps): One basis point equals 1/100th of 1%, or 0.01%.

We’ll continue to update this dictionary over time. Think something’s missing? Comment below!

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