Co-organiser, Renato Silva reveals who works hard behind the scenes to bring ProductTank Bangkok (aka PTBKK!) to life, and how their meetups have been helping the community since they began in 2017.
What is it that motivates you to run ProductTank meetups?
Put simply – getting the Bangkok product community together.
Most product teams around the city don’t connect to one another and feel very inspired whenever they see other people working in the same field, going through the same kind of challenges. For product managers, this is even more so the case since the feeling of “isolation” is more common.
It’s certainly this kind of professional who is normally the most excited during the meetups. People really start feeling part of a community and keep on asking for more – that’s what motivates me.
Who plays an important part in Bangkok’s ProductTanks?
Adam Wintle, PTBKK co-organiser has been with me since the very beginning and is an invaluable part of making it happen.
I helped co-organise the first @ProductTank Bangkok meetup last night, we got a pretty good turn out! Thanks to @DoctorGraceLee for the brilliant presentation #prodmgmt #productmanagement #producttank pic.twitter.com/SQ6mvxB5S1
— Adam Wintle (@AdamWintle) December 9, 2017
Per Tanawat, even though not an “official” co-organiser, has also added so much value in past meetups, especially through sponsorship arrangements, while Near Chayaporn has joined us in pretty much every meetup and is a great supporter of PTBKK.
Jeremie Tisseau is an experienced meetup organiser in town who continues to engage, support and motivate us to go ahead. And last but not least, Casper Sermsuksan, who somehow found me on Linkedin and pitched the ProductTank Bangkok idea to me. He introduced me to the Mind the Product team and kick-started this very interesting journey!
How many members does your ProductTank have?
On average, about 150-200 people have been joining the latest meetups and there have been nine meetups to date. We had been planning two more for February and April 2020, but unfortunately, the COVID-19 situation in Asia put these plan on hold.
Our meetups are usually held at Tencent Thailand’s offices, a new and modern venue with capacity for about 500 people. It’s conveniently located near a BTS Skytrain station in one of Bangkok’s most bustling neighbourhoods.
What can you tell us about Bangkok’s Product Community?
Bangkok is still a relatively immature city when it comes to product management, or at least what I call “modern” product management. Most companies (tech or not) don’t really have a formal product organisation and proper product talent is still scarce. Major players with local offices such as Agoda and True Digital regularly import talent from overseas to supply their needs for more mature product management professionals.
Which talks have been a hit?
There were quite a few talks that were very popular. The latest one with Marty Cagan was the biggest. Over 300 people showed up. No surprise there 😉
People who knew his work lined-up to have a chance to speak to him and collect autographs on his book Inspired. We made sure people who didn’t know him would become more aware through promotional materials and it worked great. The name of his talk was Product is Hard.
Also very popular (with about 200 attendees each) were:
- Building Products Faster by Streamlining Workflows by Thomas Lozza
- Build Better Products with Data-Driven User Experience: A panel discussion with Virot Chiraphadhanakul, Piti Patcharavalai and Four Kositanont
How does ProductTank help product people?
It’s definitely helped us to know that we’re not alone – in fact, there are quite a few of us around town! People have learned a lot during the meetups and got to know one another in ways that would have been impossible before.
Fun facts about Bangkok?
Bangkok’s full name is actually the longest name for any city in the world!
Locals refer to their city as Krung Thep which roughly translates to ‘City of Angels’. In full, the real name looks like this:
Krung Thep Mahanakhon Amon Rattanakosin Mahinthara Ayuthaya Mahadilok Phop Noppharat Ratchathani Burirom Udomratchaniwet Mahasathan Amon Piman Awatan Sathit Sakkathattiya Witsanukam Prasit
Good luck with that everyone.