Mktg SIG: Best Practices in Product Management



  • A panel discussion presented in conjunction with the Silicon Valley Product Management Association



    Sridhar Ramanathan, President - SmartResults Consulting
    Fritz Mueller, Principal - VelocityPM
    Anna Sidana, VP of Marketing and Alliances - Callixa
    Ted Salamone, President - Spin Marketing

    Click here to view the meeting write-up.


    Session Overview

    Best Practices in Product Management

    Effective product management is a core competence that all technology companies need in order to be successful. Product management drives the activities in all phases of the product life cycle, from indentifying market opportunities and customer needs, onward through development, promotion, sales and support, and ultimately to product discontinuance. Except for the CEO, no other role has such a broad view of a company, so much responsibility for getting diverse people to work together as a team, and so much impact on overall company success.

    Because product management is such a multi-faceted function and involves so many negotiations, compromises, and economic decisions, there cannot be only one "right way to do it". Models for how the job should be structured and how the tasks should be approached often vary depending on company size, industry segment, corporate culture, and other factors.

    In this session, you'll hear what four technology industry veterans have to say about which product management models, strategies, and tactics work well and which don't. They'll respond to questions about the product manager's role, market research, competitive analysis, product planning, promotional strategies, negotiation, disruption, and more. You'll come away with a better understanding of this most challenging - and most rewarding - non-executive job in any technology company.


    About the Panelists

    Sridhar Ramanathan

    is President of SmartResults Consulting, which provides early-stage software/services firms with strategies and tactics to grow revenue aggressively, often by serving as interim VP of Sales & Marketing. Sridhar was the Division Marketing Manager at Hewlett-Packard's Outsourcing Services business, a $1 billion services business in which he led key growth strategies including e-services, messaging, and ERP outsourcing offerings. With over 11 years at HP, Sridhar has held senior management positions in high growth enterprise middleware and server platform businesses. He has extensive experience in business strategy, product management, business development, and outbound Marketing. After leaving HP, Sridhar was Vice President of Marketing at Multitude, a managed services provider for applications such as web conferencing, collaboration, and unified messaging. Sridhar holds a bachelor's of science degree in Engineering Physics from U.C. Berkeley, and an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.


    Fritz Mueller

    has over 15 years of technical and product management expertise in networking products and services. He is President of Velocity Product Management, which provides outsourced product management services. Previously, Fritz was Senior Director of Product Management at Keynote Systems, the pioneer in website performance services. Prior to Keynote, Fritz was a Product Line Manager at NetManage, the leading supplier of TCP/IP application software for PCs. Before NetManage, Fritz served as Product Manager at Telebit for their line of IP routers, the industry's first dial-up routers. He worked as an engineer for Telebit Corporation writing digital signal processing software. Fritz holds an MBA from the University of Chicago and a B.S. in Computer Engineering from the University of Michigan.


    Anna Sidana

    is currently the VP of Marketing and Alliances at Callixa, and has over sixteen years of marketing, product and business development experience in enterprise software, eCommerce, supply chain and financial services for top-ranking companies. Prior to joining Callixa, Anna was Vice President of Corporate and Product Marketing at eTime Capital, a financial supply chain solutions company. At Netscape/AOL, Anna spearheaded global financial services marketing while solidifying key strategic partnerships with Sun Microsystems among others. Additionally, Anna managed and developed a suite of B2B applications for Actra/Netscape and directed Visa International's B2B eCommerce strategies. Anna was also part of Ernst & Young's management consulting practice focused on financial services and she started her career with IBM UK, marketing database management software to large financial institutions.


    Ted Salamone

    has over 15 years of executive marketing and product management experience. He is President of Spin Marketing, a provider of interim executive and consulting services; outsourced positions have included VP of Marketing for HealthWise, the world leader in knowledgebase and CRM software for the health care industry; and COO of Real Foundations, a start-up provider of innovative systems for retrofitting foundations of mobile homes without relocating them. Prior to founding Spin Marketing, Ted served as VP of Sales and Marketing at Spur Products, co-founded a high-tech advertising agency, and served as manager of channel and direct marketing for PC software products at IBM. Ted also held senior product manager positions at IBM and Ashton-Tate, in which he managed product launches, implemented cost controls, and negotiated contracts. He earned an MBA in Marketing, Summa Cum Laude at the University of New Haven, and a BS Cum Laude in Business Administration from Marywood College.


    Event Logistics


    Mitchell Park Community Center

    3800 Middlefield Road

    (between Meadow Drive and Charleston Road)

    Palo Alto, CA


    6:30-7:00pm registration/networking/refreshments

    7:00-7:20pm announcements and introductions

    7:20-8:30pm panel discussion

    8:30-9:00pm wrap-up/networking



    $15 at the door for non-SDForum Members
    $10 for SVPMA members
    No charge for SDForum members and students with ID
    No registration required

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