Leading the Product – Melbourne

An absolute feast for the brain. The team really nailed it with the Melbourne line up for leading the product this year. I was there as an Ambassador and part of the volunteer team, sketching and soaking up the inspiration.

Proceedings were kicked off by Adrienne from Brainmates with some perspective on how far the product community has come (and can I say a very lovely Welcome to country). Rich Mironov then took over as our insightful and charming emcee for the day.

As usual I was tucked away in the back of the room with the LTP social media crew quietly sketching away. High-five to Jen Leibhart who runs the LTP social channels and Clea Sherman (aka Freelance Copywriter) who blogs every presentation.

Here are my sketchnotes, some thoughts and some tweets.

Radical product thinking – Radhika Dutt

The first session of the day shook things up by challenging the epidemic of iterations and how we can use ‘Radical Product Thinking’ to bring things back to a clear vision.

Radhika Dutt - Radical Product Thinking - How to iterate less and build more @RadhikaDutt

The data driven paradox – Sherif Monsour

Product decisions should be informed, and data is what we look at to drive prioritisation. Sherif questions how we are approaching our use of data. We should be data informed, rather than data driven.

Sherif Mansour - The data-driven paradox @sherifmansour

Developing and communicating strategy – Bruce McCarthy

Bruce’s session was like a delightful sledge hammer to the brain. Jam packed with content, I struggled to keep up with the pace and pick out the highlights. He has a lot of knowledge to impart. The LTP Blog will give you a detailed summary (linked below).

Bruce McCarthy - Developing and communicating strategy @d8a_driven

Growth hacking: A product managers perspective – Ana Rowe

The term ‘Growth hacking’ makes my skin crawl a little. It is a buzz word that is over-used which I thought had lost it’s meaning. Ana’s presentation was insightful, bringing it back to the what and why. I still hate the buzzword, but Ana’s experience shows it can be valuable if used in the right way.

Ana Rowe - Growth hacking: A Product Manager's perspective @anarowe

Product Management and UX Design – Audrey Cheng

Audrey addresses the cross-overs between Product Manager and User Experience Designer roles and advocates for getting comfortable with the tension and working together.

Audrey Cheng - Product Management and UX Design - Embrace the tension between us @audjcheng

How to launch a product – Kent Weathers

Setting the scene by comparing some case studies, Kent takes us through what makes a successful product launch. Another jam-packed presentation, worth reading the blog if you want more detail (below).

Kent Weathers - How to launch a product

Your customers hate your AI – Sally Foote

An approach to using AI wrapped in a case study, further wrapped in a 50s style etiquette lesson.

TL;DR – Shut up about AI and talk about your product.

Sally Foote - There's a problem in the bagging area - your customers hate your AI and what to do about it

From Product Manager to Product Leader – Sharon Anne Kean

Advice for current and aspiring Product Leaders from Sharon’s extensive experience.

I was particularly interested in Sharon’s comments about personal brand. While she advocated for dressing the part (paraphrasing) she also pointed out in question time that you should look to work in teams where you feel you fit, and that product teams tend to welcome people who are not necessarily of the corporate ilk.

Sharon Anne Kean - The ultimate road trip from Product Manager to Product Leader

How to solve big problems and test new ideas – John Zeratsky

Sprint has become essential reading in Product Management (note to self: read Sprint). John shares the journey to building out the Spring planning cycle and how to make decisions about where the sprint methodology is of value.

John Zeratsky - How to solve big problems and test new ideas

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