Leading The Product Melbourne - Leading The Product

Your Host

Jen Marshall

Jen Marshall | Brainmates

Jen Marshall is CEO and Senior Consultant at Brainmates. She has deep experience in Media starting out her career as a News Producer at BSkyB, London. Before leading the team at Brainmates, Jen was the Product Director at Fairfax Media. Jen has an Executive MBA from the Australian Graduate School of Management and a BA in Communications from Charles Sturt University. She is regular presenter at events on the state of Product Management.

Your Speakers

Ken Sandy

Ken Sandy | University of California, Berkeley

Ken Sandy is a 20-year technology Product Management veteran based in San Francisco Bay Area. He has led Product Management teams at an executive level at both fast-growth, early-stage companies, and for larger companies attempting digital transformations amidst industry disruption.


Ken is an Industry Fellow and Lecturer at the Center for Entrepreneurship and Technology at University of California, Berkeley, where he instructs a pioneering Product Management course equipping students with real-world tools and frameworks, and immediately applying them on complex product initiatives. And he is an Executive Product Consultant, assisting companies to drive growth through establishing focused Product strategy, and maturing their Product Management processes and teams.

Previously, Ken was Vice President, Product at Lynda.com – the premier online learning company acquired by LinkedIn. Prior, he worked for companies developing content and advertising platforms for independent publishers, startups creating mobile messaging and social networking solutions, and led business units based in the US and China. He is an alumnus of University of Melbourne.

Dan Olsen

Kenneth Chin | SEEK Asia

Ken leads the product team at SEEK Asia delivering engaging customer experiences to hundreds of millions of job seekers in seven countries across Asia. SEEK Asia has the mission of improving people's lives through better careers and helping organisations be successful by hiring great talent.

Prior to joining SEEK Asia, Ken was the Product Director and member of the founding team of the London office of BCG Digital Ventures. He has consulted to many large corporate clients in Europe on startups, disruptive innovation and digital transformation. While at the firm, Ken also acted as the CEO of FarePilot, a startup venture that applied machine learning and predictive analytics to the transport sector.

Ken developed his product management career over nine years at eBay in both Sydney and London, where he became Head of Product Management for the European Product Development group at eBay Europe.

Ken's career has included various roles in marketing, business management and sales. He founded a digital media agency in the mid 90's and started his career as a software developer writing code for IBM mainframes in Singapore. He is a lean startup and agile practitioner and has an MBA from the University of Western Australia.

Trent Mankelow

Trent Mankelow | Trade Me

Trent Mankelow is the Chief Customer Officer at Trade Me, New Zealand's leading online marketplace and classified business, used by over 750K Kiwis a day.

For the last two-and-a-half years, Trent was Trade Me's Chief Product Officer, responsible for the product management practice used by 22 PMs across the business.

Prior to Trade Me, Trent was the co-founder and CEO of Optimal Experience, a UX consultancy started in New Zealand. Trent helped grow the business from two people sharing a desk in 2003, to 30 staff across Auckland, Wellington and Sydney before selling to PwC in 2014. He is a co-founder of Optimal Workshop (which builds tools for UX professionals), was the Chief Product Officer for a high-growth SaaS business, and has worked for Spark Ventures.

He's currently obsessed with mountaineering with the goal to climb Mount Cook, New Zealand's highest mountain, in December 2017.

Sara Wood

Sara Wood | GAP Inc

Sara has been leading Product teams since long before the discipline had a name. Starting in the early days of the first dotcom boom in San Francisco managing products such as Salon Magazine, she survived the bust and came through that period to lead teams at the executive level at Flickr, Wikia/Wikipedia, early stage starts ups such as Layer, international science organizations such as the United Nations, PLoS and Harvard, as well as large Fortune500 companies such as Gap Inc global.

Sara has developed her own outlook on what makes a team, a feature, a product and a company successful. She has worn many hats (depending on the size and maturity of the organization) and lived every incarnation of “process.” She has learned first-hand how to manage through complexity and changing economics (she also credits her years as a waitress and bartender to pay her way through University and Graduate school for this as well!).

Sara serves as an early-stage advisor to young companies, hoping to help accelerate their vision, while avoiding the all-too-common land mines along the way.

Cameron Adams

Sally O'Donoghue | ABC iview

Sally O'Donoghue is manager of ABC iview. iview attracts 2.1m monthly users, second only to Netflix for video on demand, and records more than 50 million program plays each month.

During Sally's time leading product development, editorial and audience experience at iview, the service has continued to break new ground with multiple digital-first program commissions and initiatives unearthing new on and off-screen talent.

Sally has previously held senior product and editorial roles at BSkyB and Virgin Media UK before joining ABC TV in 2011. Sally completed post-graduate studies in Communication at Swinburne University of Technology.

Yasi Baiani

Yasi Baiani | FitBit

Yasi Baiani is a product innovator, entrepreneur, investor, and startup advisor. As the Head of Product Management, Software Experience at Fitbit, she strategizes and builds the next generation of health and wellness products.

Yasi also teaches the Product Management course to the MBA students at Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley. Prior to Fitbit, Yasi was the CEO and Co-Founder of ActivePepper, a health and fitness mobile company and the Product Innovation Manager at athenahealth, a $5.5 billion healthcare IT firm.

Yasi also experienced entrepreneurship through the lens of a venture investor; she was a VC for a $3.5 billion venture fund in Silicon Valley, invested in tech and digital health startups. She served on the board of for-profit (Zvents) and non-profit organizations (City of Dreams) in the past.

Yasi is a blogger, writing regularly about the digital health and the role of women in tech. She has over 250K followers on LinkedIn and has been recognized as the Top LinkedIn Voices in 2015 and 2016. She holds a BS in Business Administration from UC Berkeley and an MBA from Harvard Business School. Yasi was listed as The 27 Most Impressive Harvard MBAs by Business Insiders.

Syed Ahmed

Syed Ahmed | BUPA Australia and New Zealand

From global multi-national corporate enterprises to early stage start-ups, fluid, fast-moving digital experiences to deep, mission-critical enterprise IT systems, Syed has experience in synthesizing business outcomes with the technologies that enable them.

He is currently the Head of Digital Products and Operations at Bupa Australia and New Zealand, where he begs, cajoles and sometimes leads a number of cross-functional multi-disciplinary teams in delivering and managing the digital product portfolio. Prior to joining Bupa, Syed worked across technology management, strategy and advisory roles across a range of organisations including ThoughtWorks, Servcorp, Perpetual and Avanade.

When he's not juggling corporate priorities, Syed provides advice to early-stage tech start-ups, mentors a small number of start-up founders and occasionally helps out as a judge in start-up competitions. He also considers himself a coffee enthusiast (one level below snob), is a keen camper and occasionally gets to ride his motorbike.

Syed has a Bachelor of Commerce in Business Information Systems, a Master of Information Systems (Honours) in Artificial Intelligence, and an MBA from AGSM.


Lightning Talks

Ken Sandy

Rakalene Condon | CoreLogic

Rakalene is the Head of API and Partner Integrations at CoreLogic, leading a team that delivers bespoke data solutions for clients. In this role she collaborates closely with customers and partners on product development to help them integrate property data into their own systems and customer engagement solutions. Rakalene is passionate about the power of data combined with user-centric design thinking to create value, transform organisations and change the shape of society!

Rakalene is an experienced product professional with extensive experience in transactional data in both B2B and B2C businesses and telecommunications. Highlights include a stint in South Africa to launch a new telecommunications company and helping with the first iPhone launch for an Australian Telco. Rakalene believes that great product comes from a great team and starts with a compelling story.

Liz Blink

Liz Blink | Sensis

Liz Blink is a passionate product builder, data-nerd, people person and scientist. Liz is an agitator, accomplished at bringing positive change to her organisation. She's not afraid to go out on a limb in order to quickly learn which measures will be good for the customer or the organisation. She can process complex information quickly and make powerful decisions that keep things moving. As a result, Liz is known as someone who "gets shit done".

Currently Liz is the Digital Lead at Sensis within the Customer group, leading a team of designers and product people to rethink the service experience for customers and instilling a customer led mindset at Sensis. She has had a great experience also applying a design thinking mindset into the work and augmenting the product management practice at the organisation.

Liz is so passionate about product mgmt stuff she co-founded the community group Product Anonymous: where Melbourne-based product manager folk get together & discuss product management topics & meet others in the industry or related fields (like UX). Check them out at: http://productanonymous.com/

Zac Andrew

Zac Andrew | ANZ

Zac Andrew is Rewards and Travel Product Manager at ANZ, responsible for ANZ's Rewards Credit Cards, Travel Card and Travel Money.

He is responsible for the success of ANZ's Rewards and Travel cards, including enhancing customer experience, profitability, utility and compliance.

Zac joined ANZ for the second time in January 2017 after spending 2.5 years at Australia's leading provider of end-to-end payments solutions: Cuscal, where he managed the Prepaid and Debit cards portfolios. Prior to Cuscal, Zac spent nearly 8 years at ANZ in a variety of roles including in deposits product management and credit card customer experience.

Zac has a Bachelor in Business Studies majoring in Marketing and Human Resource Management from Monash University.

Outside of work he likes to eat out with friends, follow US politics and is also the Secretariat for ANZ's Pride Network.



Where is it?

RACV City Club
501 Bourke Street

Getting there

Proceed to 501 Bourke Street.

From Flagstaff Railway Station. Walk 400m down William Street towards Bourke Street. Turn into Bourke Street. The RACV City Club is on 100m the right.

From Tram stop William St/Bourke Street. Walk down Bourke Street towards Queen Street. RACV is 100m on the right.
From tram stop Queen Street - stop 4. Walk along Bourke Street towards William Street. RACV is 150m on the left.

Secure underground parking is available at RACV City Club. The car park entrance is located on Chancery Lane. Access is via Little Collins Street or Bourke Streets between Queen and William Streets. Exit is via Chancery Lane to Bourke Street. The cost is $21.60 per hour to a maximum of $86.40 per day single entry.

The after party

501 Bourke Street