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Product Ops Podcast

Product Ops Podcast

By Gerisha Nadaraju

The podcast for all things Product Ops. Listen to diverse voices across this emerging function.

Product Ops is set to be the backbone of product led growth within organisations yet there is still much to be learnt and shared in this space. Each week, Product Ops Podcast (POP) will bring you unique perspectives and actionable insights from people working in this function. We'll dive into topics such as Getting Started, Hiring and how it compares to Product Management.

Subscribe, share, follow and get in touch @productopspod if you're enjoying it!
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S2 E7: Set up for Success with Stripe
S2 E7: Set up for Success with Stripe
For the last episode of Season 2 of POP, I’m thrilled to be joined by one of the pioneers of Product Ops in the industry, Blake Samic (Head of Product Ops @ Stripe), as well as two members of his fantastic product ops team at Stripe: Alexandra Lapinsky Wilson (Product Ops Manager) and Dan Barber (Product Ops Manager). We find out how Stripe’s Product Ops team is set up for success! Building on the learnings Blake had from setting up Product Ops at Uber, we unpack how the team is organised between embedded product ops and more centralised product ops programs. Dan and Alexandra deep dive on why this structure works so well with some great practical examples including: - the Stripe Terminal global launch and - the Tops Asks from Users program. Get ready for non stop insights into how one of the best product ops teams in the industry accelerates Stripe’s ability to deliver more value to more users!
01:17:45
August 03, 2022
S2 E6: Quarterly Planning with Wise
S2 E6: Quarterly Planning with Wise
Karen Gutierrez (Product Ops Lead) and Reema Joshi (Product Ops Specialist) from Wise join me for the sixth episode of Season 2 of POP. We find out what it’s like to manage and optimise Quarterly Planning at a global company with about 3000 employees in 17 offices across the world! We deep dive on the following challenges: 1. Quarterly Planning 2. Growing the team initially from 1 to 2 3. Product Ops "owning" products (Wise Mission Roadmap) Listen in for some practical insights into how product ops is helping to improve transparency at a company wide and customer level while keeping a product mindset firmly in place!  
50:49
June 15, 2022
S2 E5: Creating Transparency with Pendo
S2 E5: Creating Transparency with Pendo
Christine Itwaru (Head of Product Ops), Rick Kadlac (Lead Product Ops Manager) and Adam Siegel (Manager, Technical Writing) from Pendo join me for the fifth episode of Season 2 of POP. We find out how Christine and her experienced team are creating company wide transparency around building, shipping and using products. We deep dive on the following challenges: 1. Focusing on the right things to tackle first 2. Establishing guardrails for your own product usage 3. Building trust in order to drive a collaborative knowledge base initiative Listen in for some practical insights from a leading Product Ops team who "wrote the book" on Product Ops (The Rise of Product Ops)!
56:21
June 09, 2022
S2 E4: Evolving as you Scale with Chipper Cash
S2 E4: Evolving as you Scale with Chipper Cash
Anita Asiedu (Director of Operations) and Yande Nomvete (Senior Product Ops Analyst) from Chipper Cash join me for the fourth episode of Season 2 of POP. We find out what it’s like to grow a product ops team from 1 to many within a year and how the team needed to evolve against the backdrop of rapid scaling. We deep dive on the following challenges: 1. Evolving Responsibilities for the Product Ops team 2. Reducing waste in operations using internal tooling and keeping the user at the centre 3. Hiring externally: how do we find the right talent Listen in for some practical insights into growing a product ops team and how product ops is helping to improve efficiency through internal tooling and keeping the user at the centre of everything!
56:05
April 21, 2022
S2 E3: Driving Customer & Data Insights with Onfido
S2 E3: Driving Customer & Data Insights with Onfido
Kam Dadfar (Director of Product Ops), Virginia Chiarentin (Product Ops Manager) and Charlotte Hayward (Product Ops Manager) from Onfido join me for the third episode of Season 2 of POP.  We find out how harnessing the power of data can unlock both process and product improvements in a fast growing scale-up and deep dive on the following challenges: 1. Using customer insights to improve a trial adoption process 2. Building on data insights to drive longer term product improvements 3. Scaling an NPS system Listen in for some unique insights from a Product Ops team that sits under the Operations org and functions as a neutral party that ultimately puts customer interests first!
50:44
April 05, 2022
S2 E2: Working as One with Twilio
S2 E2: Working as One with Twilio
Tina Stewart (Head of Product Ops - Data&Growth Platform) and Shradha Kothari (Former Head of Product Ops - R&D) from Twilio join me for the second episode of Season 2 of POP. We discuss what it's like coming together to work as one Product Ops team under the Twilio umbrella post the Segment acquisition and deep dive on the following practical examples: 1. Scaling communication into and out of the R&D team 2. Simplifying operating cadences and recognizing the importance of change management 3. Scaling the Product Ops team with a clear sense of purpose from a career development perspective Listen in for some unique insights into how Product Ops is structured in a large and fast-growing organisation to deliver maximum impact! 
53:27
March 15, 2022
S2 E1: Alignment at Scale with Shopify
S2 E1: Alignment at Scale with Shopify
Vincent Poulain (Senior Product Ops Lead) and Jessica Orellana (Senior Ops Lead) from Shopify join me for the first episode of Season 2 of POP. We deep dive on practical examples of how the Product Ops team is tackling alignment at scale, including: 1. With hypergrowth, how do we know what’s happening across the org and have the right decisions at the right time?  2. How do we get hundreds of people across multiple teams to solve a hard problem instead of "shipping the org chart" 3. How do we scale Product Ops with a common foundation but different flavours e.g. Growth "startup" versus Core platform? Listen in for some incredible insights into how Product Ops is enabling Shopify to operate with "the speed of startups and the impact of giants!" 
57:19
March 01, 2022
S1 E12: A CPO's View on Product Ops - Michael Akkerman (CPO @ Cardlytics)
S1 E12: A CPO's View on Product Ops - Michael Akkerman (CPO @ Cardlytics)
Michael Akkerman, the Chief Product and Strategy Officer @ Cardlytics, joins me for the final episode of Season 1 of POP to share his views on Product Ops and why he thinks it's a key role in a scaling product organisation. Prior to his current role, Michael served as the Global Head of Partnerships at Pinterest.  We talk about how important internal stakeholder management and collaboration is in building and launching products (and how Product Ops can help strengthen this process!). Listen in to find out how Michael sees this function delivering value and what he will do as a CPO to set it up for success. This is a great episode to get a different perspective on Product Ops from a CPO championing the role and looking to hire for it! 
39:59
June 30, 2021
S1 E11: Scaling Product Ops - Anabela Cesário (Director of Product Ops @ OutSystems)
S1 E11: Scaling Product Ops - Anabela Cesário (Director of Product Ops @ OutSystems)
Anabela Cesário, the Director of Product Ops @ OutSystems, joins me on POP this week to talk about how she focused on tackling impactful work with her product ops team which allowed her to scale the function from 3 to 9 people over a year. She has worked at OutSystems for over 5 years in various positions including the Director of Product Management. Her ability to understand and empathise with product managers definitely serves her well in this position. Listen in to find out more about the operating model she uses to evaluate the impact of work, as well as to find out what a scaled up version of Product Ops looks like. (They're doing a lot!) Anabela provides some great advice for Product Ops leaders looking to scale this function! 
37:49
June 24, 2021
S1 E10: Data Driven Decisions with ProdOps - Yashas Singri (Product Ops Manager @ Talkspace)
S1 E10: Data Driven Decisions with ProdOps - Yashas Singri (Product Ops Manager @ Talkspace)
Yash Singri, a Product Ops Manager @ Talkspace, joins me on POP this week to talk about how he's using product analytics in ProdOps to help drive data driven decision making. He previously worked as a consultant at Bain & Company before landing a strategy "externship" and moving into the digital health space. Listen in to find out how Yash works with the data science team in order to bring a holistic view of quantitative and qualitative analysis to product teams. He provides practical examples of how he has leveraged SQL skills and data analysis for 1) sizing and prioritising of tickets and requests and 2) experimentation and product decision making. This is a great episode for anyone looking to embed data analysis and insights into the ProdOps function.
37:18
June 16, 2021
S1 E9: Community Building with Product Ops - Mayara Barros (Product Ops Manager @ QuintoAndar)
S1 E9: Community Building with Product Ops - Mayara Barros (Product Ops Manager @ QuintoAndar)
Mayara Barros, the Product Ops Manager @ QuintoAndar, joins me on POP this week to talk about her passion for community building and how she's using it to improve the efficiency and alignment of 60+ product teams! May previously worked as a corporate lawyer and used to organise tech events such as TechStars Startup Weekend and SiliconDrinkAbout. Listen in to find out how she is helping teams work better together by cultivating strong connections and building trust. May shares some practical examples of work she's doing in this space from tailored onboarding programmes for new PMs to purposeful team rituals. This is an insightful episode that delves into the importance of addressing the people side of product through Product Ops! 
38:34
June 09, 2021
S1 E8: Product Ops in an Early Stage Startup - Wole Atunbi (Product Ops @ Mono)
S1 E8: Product Ops in an Early Stage Startup - Wole Atunbi (Product Ops @ Mono)
Wole Atunbi, Product Ops @ Mono (YC W21), joins me on POP this week to talk about what it's like working in Product Ops at a seed stage startup (with less than 20 people!). Wole previously worked as a product manager at various startups in Nigeria and has now found a role that combines his experience in product with his background in business and interest in strategy. Listen in to find out more about what a typical day in product ops looks like for him and how he juggles wearing many hats! This episode provides a unique perspective on Product Ops and shows how each company will define the role differently according to specific needs. 
31:41
June 02, 2021
S1 E7: Lessons from over 5yrs in Product Ops - Sloan Saunders (Product Ops Manager @ Evidation Health)
S1 E7: Lessons from over 5yrs in Product Ops - Sloan Saunders (Product Ops Manager @ Evidation Health)
Sloan Saunders, the Product Ops Manager @ Evidation Health, joins me on POP this week to talk about lessons she's learnt from over 5 years of working in Product Ops! Listen in to find out more about Sloan's journey with Product Ops from starting off as a product ops analyst to being a product programme manager and now hiring for her own team that she manages. Many feel that this function is quite new (myself included!), so this is a great episode with lots of wisdom shared on how the role has evolved over the years and why Sloan still enjoys working in this space.
33:46
May 25, 2021
S1 E6: Applying Design Thinking to Product Ops - Hugo Froes (Product Ops Lead @ Farfetch)
S1 E6: Applying Design Thinking to Product Ops - Hugo Froes (Product Ops Lead @ Farfetch)
Hugo Froes, the Product Ops Lead @ Farfetch, joins me on POP this week to talk about how he transitioned from a background in UX Design to Product Ops! Listen in to find out what design principles Hugo finds valuable in his current role and how this has shaped his focus in Product Ops. From conducting user research to pattern matching and using Wardley Maps - Hugo has a wealth of knowledge, experience and advice to share on navigating Product Ops. He also hosts informal chats about Product Ops on Clubhouse. Give him a follow on twitter (or LinkedIn) to join in the next conversation!
39:23
May 19, 2021
S1 E5: Customer Centricity & Product Ops - Kaitlyn Melo (Product Ops Lead @ Faire)
S1 E5: Customer Centricity & Product Ops - Kaitlyn Melo (Product Ops Lead @ Faire)
Kaitlyn Melo, the Product Ops Lead @ Faire, joins me on POP this week to talk about how she leveraged her background in customer experience to bring customer centricity directly to product teams! Listen in to find out how Kaitlyn developed a Voice of Customer (VOC) programme for Faire against the backdrop of rapid scaling and the need for instant knowledge transfer. A good episode with lots of practical advice for anyone in product or product ops currently facing a similar challenge. And btw, she's hiring! 
31:11
May 11, 2021
S1 E4: Product Ops Hiring and Career Progression - Sharmin Abdo (Head of Product Ops @ Dext)
S1 E4: Product Ops Hiring and Career Progression - Sharmin Abdo (Head of Product Ops @ Dext)
Sharmin Abdo is the Head of Product Ops @ Dext (formerly Receipt Bank) and is currently hiring for her team. She has been at Dext for over 5 years in previous roles such as Marketing Ops and Customer Success. She also spoke at the PLA Product Ops Summit on Defining Product Ops. On this episode we chat about some of the key traits in hiring for Product Ops and her decision to create a competency framework for the role. I think Sharmin's approach of: 1) starting before you're ready, 2) iterating as you learn and 3) moving in the right direction even if it's not perfect, will resonate with a lot of Product Ops leaders! 
37:54
May 04, 2021
S1 E3: Product Planning and OKR Setting - Marielle Velander (Product Ops Lead @ Dashlane)
S1 E3: Product Planning and OKR Setting - Marielle Velander (Product Ops Lead @ Dashlane)
Marielle Velander is the Product Ops Lead @ Dashlane. She leveraged her background in user research and anthropology to develop a product operations function and has written about this for Mind the Product here. On this episode we explore how she is going about improving the quarterly product planning and OKR setting process at Dashlane. We talk about some of the tools and resources she has found helpful, the importance of product roadmaps and how she partners with product on initiatives. Marielle provides useful ways of thinking about product ops and practical advice throughout the episode including: conducting quarterly product ops reviews, mapping out the product development cycle and identifying the level of product maturity of the product org. This is guaranteed to give you food for thought!
37:55
April 27, 2021
S1 E2: Product Manager to Product Ops - Kevin Sakamoto (Director of Product Ops @ Dollar Shave Club)
S1 E2: Product Manager to Product Ops - Kevin Sakamoto (Director of Product Ops @ Dollar Shave Club)
Kevin Sakamoto is currently the Director of Digital Product Ops @ Dollar Shave Club. Prior to this role, Kevin spent over a decade working in product management leadership roles at companies such as Zappos, Target and lululemon. On this episode, we explore a question that is often asked in this space: "How does Product Ops compare to Product Management?". From common skills to key differences as well as how the two functions work together - Kevin provides invaluable firsthand insight and experience! This is a great episode for anyone interested in moving from product management to product ops or vice versa.
34:39
April 20, 2021
S1 E1: Getting Started with Product Ops - Gwera Kiwana (Senior Ops Analyst @ 11:FS)
S1 E1: Getting Started with Product Ops - Gwera Kiwana (Senior Ops Analyst @ 11:FS)
Gwera Kiwana, a Senior Ops Analyst @ 11:FS is currently setting up a Product Ops function. On this episode, we chat about how she identified the need for Product Ops, the relevance of her ops background from Monzo, the importance of manager support and how she's navigating the challenges of getting Product Ops off the ground as a one-woman team! 
32:40
April 11, 2021