ON · #006

A newsletter for everyone who shares our passion for the wonderful but wily world of startup and scaleup operations. 

❦ Your ON team --
Astrid, Aušrinė and Charlene

DISCOVER Featured Type of Ops: 
Product Ops

 Astrid:  According to Mind the Product, Product Ops is ultimately responsible for ensuring that:

  • Product teams are held accountable to their outcomes.
  • Product organisation is set up to scale consistently and with low friction.
Product Ops primary responsibilities:
  • Engineering, design, product team communication, announcements; reinforcing process, policies, and practices.
  • Maintaining templates, guidelines, how-to references and resources. (The product ops person should have access to these and be able to direct people to the latest versions).
  • Streamlining intelligence and automation of tasks / routine practices.
  • Bridging important changes from inside the organisation to other departments like customer support or sales.
  • Developing and maintaining a continuing education program for product managers.
  • Supporting onboarding.
  • Researching and organising information on product management best practice.
If you're interested in learning more, check out this new Product Ops Podcast brought to you by Gerisha Nadaraju, Head of Business Operations at Dojo. Each week, Product Ops Podcast (POP) features a different guest speaker offering unique perspectives and actionable insights. Here are the first few episodes to give you a sense of the topics:
S1 E1: Getting Started with Product Ops with Gwera Kiwana, Senior Ops Analyst @ 11:FS
S1 E2: Product Manager to Product Ops with Kevin Sakamoto, Director of Digital Product Operations at Dollar Shave Club
S1 E3: Product Planning and OKR Setting with Marielle Velander, Product Operations Lead at Dashlane

CONNECT Global Ops Communities Map

 Aušrinė:  Last month we published the first ever map of operations communities around the world. 🎉 

Joining a community is the best way to connect with likeminded peers, share knowledge and help each other with interesting challenges. However, every community is slightly different - some cover a broad range of topics whilst others are quite specialised. Some have thousands of members whilst others limit membership to a few hundred. Some charge membership fees whilst others are free to join. Some are on Slack whilst others run on email groups or other community platforms.

We recognise that one size doesn't fit all, and therefore we want you to find the right ops community based on your interests, career path, communication preferences or location.

We hope our Operations Communities Map will help you see that you're not alone, and there are lots of different ways to find your ops tribe.

You can find the infographic and the full list with community descriptions and application links here.

 ON is Powered by... 

...YOU :)

If you'd like to partner with Operations Nation, support us, work with us, sponsor us, or get involved in any other way, we'd love to hear from you. Drop us a line.

CONNECT Featured Ops Community: 
Global Product Ops Community

Since the main focus of this newsletter is on Product Ops, we'd like to highlight the Global Product Ops Community on Twitter.
It was started by Hugo Froes (Product Ops Lead), Chris Compston (Product Ops Principal) and Bruno Boeger (Product Ops Specialist), three POPs colleagues working closely together at Farfetch. 

Here you can find links to product ops job postings, related frameworks, and their upcoming events.
GPOC next event is on the 9th of July on Clubhouse. They will be looking to hear the stories of failures and challenges the community faced...because what's best to learn from if not someone else's mistakes? 😉 

Join the conversation here.

CELEBRATE Featured Ops Hero: 
Gerisha Nadaraju, Head of Biz Ops @ Dojo

We had the immense pleasure of catching up with Gerisha Nadaraju, Head of Business Operations at Dojo and a Founder and Host of the Product Ops Podcast featured above.
 ON:  Hello Gerisha! 👋 Could you give us an intro about you and your podcast?
 Gerisha:  Hi! I'm Gerisha, an experienced Fintech Operations leader working in London. I'm currently the Head of Biz Ops at Dojo, and before this I worked at TrueLayer for 3 years where I joined in Biz Ops and went on to set up a Product Ops function at the company.
I'm originally from South Africa where I worked as an accountant and investment professional before coming to the UK in 2016 to do an MBA at Oxford. While setting up a Product Ops function, I realised that there wasn't very much information and practical advice available on this emerging function. I was invited to speak at the Product Ops Summit organised by Product-Led Alliance (PLA) earlier this year and that's where the seed for Product Ops Podcast (POP) was planted as lots of people reached out to me afterwards to connect and share learnings and get advice on challenges they were facing. I found I was having lots of useful 1:1 conversations with people across the world and wanted to create a platform to share this knowledge and amplify the voices in this space.

 ON:  How did you get into Product Ops?
 Gerisha:  I had been working in a Biz Ops role at TrueLayer where a lot of what I did was trying to solve key business problems relating to scale. Given this experience, I was asked by the CEO to get closer to the Product team to see if I could support them from an operational point of view as they sought to scale internationally for the first time. I initially led an internal team called Catalyst which was effectively doing product ops work without the title of product ops yet. I used the learnings from this team to establish Product Ops formally and hire a team that was embedded within product pods focusing on scaling product knowledge, strengthening feedback loops and process improvements. I wrote about my move from Biz Ops to Product Ops here.

 ON:  What's the mission behind creating the podcast?
 Gerisha:  To share knowledge on a nascent function where people are very much still figuring out how to define and structure it. To do this by spotlighting diverse voices and points of view across the tech industry. To help contribute to and build a sense of community in this space.

 ON:  Is there one moment you can pick from your episodes so far that has left an impact on you?
 Gerisha:  Each episode leaves an impact in different ways. I think chatting to the fantastic Kevin Sakamoto, the Director of Product Ops at Dollar Shave Club was enlightening in that he has such a wealth of product knowledge and leadership experience yet remains so incredibly humble, down to earth and eager to learn from others. We need more leaders like that in the Product/Tech space (or at least more visibility of them!).

For more words of wisdom from Gerisha, read the full interview on the Operations Nation Medium blog!

Your Ops Voice

Share your favourite operations resource and help other ops professionals out!

 Astrid:  Google searches can be exhausting and time consuming. But the relevant operations resources are out there, just hidden under a lot of other stuff. We are creating a space where they are all gathered for easy access.

Share your favourite resource so we can kickstart our one-stop-shop for ops! It can be a go-to website, newsletter, article, blog, book, template, or anything else at all.

Click here to share your favourite operations resource
GROW Featured Ops Game: 
Dyson Sphere Program
 Charlene:  Even though my husband Sean is the CEO of an agtech startup, I think he must have been an ops geek in another lifetime. He's recently been playing Dyson Sphere Program, which is like Factorio but on planets in outer space. 🪐 

For those of you who have never played games like these, the main objective is to build and maintain factories, which requires mining raw resources, researching technologies, building infrastructure, and automating production of increasingly complex materials.
This reminded me of the way that Operations was taught in my MBA program at the University of California, Berkeley, which was focused more on traditional operations, in a time before cloud-based tech software startups that have zero inventory beyond office equipment. The course taught us how to optimise the speed and efficiency of supply chains management through concepts such as Economic Order Quantity (EOQ).
Personally, I don't feel like I have nearly enough patience to build endless rows of ore-mining factories. However, I can appreciate the beauty of watching output consistently increase exponentially as you design and optimise the way inputs are gathered and processed.
I think one of the things that makes operations in tech startups so challenging is that we are not automated bots producing widgets. We are highly diverse humans providing products and services to highly diverse customers. Yet, we are always expected to scale our operations processes to be universal and replicable.

CONNECT Featured Ops Jobs 

Check out our brand spankin' new startup and scaleup operations jobs page here. This month, we'd like to highlight the following roles:
If you're hiring for an operations role or looking for your next gig in operations, get in touch with us. We'd love to help.
Stay tuned as we keep exploring the operations landscape.

If you liked our newsletter, please
spread the word and share it with everyone who you think will find it interesting!
Share Share
Tweet Tweet
Forward Forward
If you're not yet a subscriber, you can sign up to our monthly newsletter and updates here.
See you next month! :wave:
The team behind Operations Nation:
Astrid Verstraete - Operations Consultant, Co-Founder of Ops Stories, Co-Founder of ON
Aušrinė Keršanskaitė - Head of Operations at Sphere, Co-Founder of Ops Stories, Co-Founder of ON
Charlene Chen - COO at Lantum, Founder of COOhort, Co-Founder of ON
Valentina Salvi - Content & Marketing Associate at ON
Copyright © 2021 Operations Nation, All rights reserved.

Want to change how you receive these emails?
You can update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list.

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp