Season 4 - Episode 3

The Importance of Understanding Your Product

Yuliya Malysh is the Head of Growth for Miro, the world’s most popular online collaborative whiteboard platform. She talks us through different myths and misconceptions about Growth Product Management, different ways to use Miro, challenges 2020 brought, and more.

Yuliya Malysh, Head of Growth at Miro
Question [00:09:09] How did you get started in Product? How did you get to where you are now? 

Yuliya [00:09:15] Yes. So I will start from the day I joined Miro. So I joined this company almost seven years back and I joined in as a product analyst, but there were only 15 people so we wear a lot of different hats at the same time. We don’t know about the term “Product Management”, but we were doing it. What we were doing was discovering the patterns using the MVP that we were building and figuring out how we could solve user problems or make their user flows better. That is why while being an analyst, I also was working on the website landing page designs or the product onboarding and also a business model that we had because I always look at the data and see where we had friction and bottlenecks. That was also part of my responsibility to discover how to remove that friction, to help us grow and solve user problems at the same time. So it was a very smooth transition from data to product management.

I think about three years back, I started to build a product growth function here at Miro, and now six cross-functional teams that work in different areas of the product or different business metrics from acquisition activation, monetization, and retention. 

You might also be interested in: Product-Led Growth Strategy for Product Managers

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Question [00:12:34] What would you say are some of the biggest myths and misconceptions around growth product management? 

Yuliya [00:12:42] I think it’s way harder than people think it is. Sometimes I face this reality or other mentality that it’s just testing the ideas, so it’s simple, you have an idea, let’s go and test it. But actually, it’s a very hard work underneath because, to make a real business impact, you need to have a lot of different contexts and understand both the customer problem and deeply understand their why, but also like have this data mindset to connect those two pieces and also crafting the narrative for the good experiments is very important. An idea is not an experiment, and I think this is a misconception as well. Taking then the output of the experiment to combine the qualitative, quantitative, and experiment results to make the decision. For me, it’s more work that needs to be done to be successful in this role that many think if they haven’t ever tried this role. 

Question [00:19:03] What would you say for product managers what’s the best way for them to make the most out of your tool where it’s been built, sort of with them in mind? 

Yuliya [00:19:14] We recently launched the Miro verse that is our user-generated content library. It’s a community templates library, and this is where other companies and other leaders, other product managers from companies share how they use our product. I find is way more inspirational than me sharing like how I am using the product and what we have in mind because they’re more creative than we are. It’s also again, gives you a big variety of use cases that you can do and a big variety of frameworks that you can take and not think about the framework and the format. You should just concentrate on the processes, not creating like the way it should be done, but focused on the work. So I encourage everyone to visit the Miro verse and explore how other companies like Kodak, Samsung, Agent, and Smarter use an old product for and find out an interesting framework that you can apply for a specific use case.

Person with mask pointing at screen
Question [00:25:40] How do you see the “unique challenges of 2020” affecting the product world/ how your team works?

Yuliya [00:25:49] I think that when the Corona Virus came, one of our goals was to urgently transfer all the processes that take place in the office to the remote format. We did it pretty fast and on the go, we’ll learn and iterate it a lot in terms of what is not necessary anymore or what is something that we are missing. I think people become more empathetic to each other and try to speak out more and ask questions in terms of how you feel or speak up when they see that this process doesn’t work anymore like we need to change because I felt overwhelmed. Constant iteration and asking for a product team to provide feedback for the leadership team for people team help us to iterate and to come up with a more comparable process that we have right now. 

It’s also in remote format, I think it’s more important to provide more clarity on the roles and expectations and responsibilities of individual contributors and the team. So they are not like feeling lost like alone in their home. It also implies a lot more communication and confirmation speaking through this. I call them all over again. 

We’ll be back next week with Megan Murphy from Hotjar with even more of the latest insights from the Product Management world.

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