I help successful NZ businesses build high performance product leadership teams
Congratulations! You're no longer a startup, have battled to win market fit and are on the move. You've led the direction of your product organically through the efforts of an amazing leadership team. But now you're stretched. The distance between product delivery and business leadership is growing and you're struggling to reconcile the constraints of each.
This is the perfect time to grow your product leadership capability and I'd love to help.
As CEO or Founder you may already be leading product strategy, prioritisation, scope, development and many other aspects of building a product. So when you decide to hire your first dedicated product leader you have some decisions to make. Who do you hire? At what level? How do you find them? How do you avoid losing control? What does a dedicated product leader even do?
Helping you and your team grow a product leadership function is more than a hire, meeting or report. It takes time, reflection and experimentation.
I provide ongoing advice to senior leaders, working with you as you evolve your product practices, refine your product vision and strategy and grow your product teams.
Have a read over my popular Product Leadership Advisory Retainer Agreement - it's a great way to guarantee fast and regular access to advice, workshops and hiring support.
Getting people in a room, focused on a key topic, with someone there to guide the conversation and bring years of experience to the table, is a great way to get everyone on the same page and moving in the right direction.
I run a series of product workshops and facilitated conversations with you and your team.
Each workshop is customised for you and your context. Please get in touch for more details.
Product leadership is critical to the success of your product. Hiring the right person takes time and requires experience in sourcing and evaluating potential candidates.
I've been hiring CPOs, Product Managers and Owners for years, know what to ask and look for and can help you find the right person. I’ll get to know you and the team, help you pitch the role and save you time by interviewing and shortlisting the most promising candidates.
You work in shades of grey, where there are often no right answers. You're juggling the hearts and minds of a diverse range of customers and stakeholders and need to find a single path. You have a lot of responsibility but sometimes feel powerless.
But you’re indispensable.
Few people in an organisation have the same oversight of all the moving parts as you do. You represent the concerns of the business, technology and your customers. You can navigate a path to success in a way no-one else can.
So yeah, it's an exciting job.
I coach senior product leaders facing specific challenges or looking to generally improve their approach and effectiveness. Product leadership is a demanding job and it’s easy to lose yourself in the day to day challenges. Stepping out of the office and talking with someone impartial and experienced is a great way to recharge and incentivise yourself to achieve even more.
I offer regular coaching sessions, in person or online, where you are at the centre of the conversation. We'll focus on your challenges, your situation and ultimately lead to your solutions. We’ll quickly go beyond the theory and grapple with your context and reality, coming up with concrete solutions to put into practice.
Have a read over my coaching agreement for more information.
Training with a Difference
I say training but this is no attend-and-forget thing. I wanted to create something that has some of the structure and focus of traditional training but that also creates a strong follow through and opportunity to expand your network.
The format is a combination of a 4 hour workshop, 1.5 hour individual coaching and a 2 hour group reflection session. It's limited to six participants at a time to give everyone a voice and space to think.
I'm involved in a number of community initiatives aimed at bringing product people together to share our experiences and learn from each other.
A friend and I created the first New Zealand ProductTank Meetup in Wellington back in 2015. Supported by the team at Mind the Product, we meet monthly to talk about all things product, have amazing local and international speakers and are a friendly bunch always happy to share a story and ideas.
We'd love to see you at either the Wellington or Auckland ProductTank.
If there's one thing in shorter supply than product leaders, it's senior product leaders.
KissMySaas brings senior executives of global SaaS businesses together to talk to their peers in an informal format.
I moderate the Product stream and if you're a CPO/Head of Product, I'd love to hear from you.
Join the Slack Community
Keen to be part of the online conversation? If you're a member of a NZ ProductTank Meetup (or not) come and join the party
"Tokes made an immediate and lasting impact to our business. His approach to coaching a business through the transition towards a true product oriented mindset is refreshing and effective. He really helped us to lift our strategic thinking and therefore performance by simply asking the right questions and tying the answers of these to our vision."
"Having Tokes as a coach really helped me focus on what mattered and make sure we were building a strong product culture."
Founder & Director
"It's been great to have Tokes with us on our journey as we build up our product team. His advice and hands on coaching has been formative in helping us create the right product culture for growth"
"The [Virtual Hiring Manager] process was open and transparent and the candidates that moved to interviews were all excellent. If you are seeking people for Product roles, Tokes' expertise really does make a difference."
"Tokes provides a deep level of product knowledge, and asks the right questions to ensure you get to the right position yourself, rather than being told how to."
"Thanks for [the Workshop] today. It was one of the best and most important discussions we have had..."