About Harsha Kumar
Harsha Kumar, who was till a few weeks ago, AVP of Products at Ola India. Now the audience in India wouldn’t need an introduction to Ola but for my audience outside India must know that Ola is India’s answer to Uber so much so that Uber is finding it tough to crack the Indian market because of a resilient Ola in India. I will be sharing a Bloomberg article on Ola vs Uber that was published only last week in the show notes for you to read.
Questions for Harsha
- How has the journey been with Ola ever since you joined the company?
- You said you build product team at Ola. What according to you is a great product team? How do you hire them?
- Help us understand the products cab aggregation companies like Ola, Uber, Grab, Lyft and many others build. What does it fundamentally take to build products right to become successful in this domain.
- What is the process of solving a challenging problem in Ola? Is it through Discovery, Build Measure Learn, MVP validations, iterations?
How do you prioritise on what needs to be build in the next quarter or couple of quarters especially when there are so many competing priorities vying for your attention? What are some of your proven strategies?
- Tell us a bit about metrics. It is said that a good metric is one that drives decision making. How do you measure the success and effectiveness of your products and product teams?
- You are a role model for being someone who moved into a new domain ( transportations and cab hailing service) and succeeded in that role. As product managers, we sometimes want to shift to a new domain, say from e-commerce, to VR or to IoT, or Machine Learning. For PMs who do not have experience in such domains, how do you enter such industries. How should one prepare for it? For example, what skills a PM should aspire to get into an online transportation network company like Ola or Uber or Lyft?
- What is your favourite consumer product and why? How do you think aspiring product managers should hone their product sense?
- Since you have worked at Zynga, again a company I admire with great product culture. Share with us some of your lessons learned in that organization? How do they build such amazing products there?
- Zynga was one of the few companies along with Linkedin, Google and General Assemble that used OKRs to build products. Did you use the same in Ola? How do you manage to stay on top of your product goals and objectives/metrics?
- How have you developed yourself over the years to become a product leader? Is it by the process of building more and more products at work? Is it by doing and pushing yourself doing something beyond that? Please share with us how do you hone your craft?
- Share with us some of your biggest failures in building products. Has there been occasions you built something that failed to work? Or you failed at building something right? What are the key lessons?
- What are some of the vital skills a product manager can’t do without to succeed in his career?
- What are some of the books and resources that have shaped you in your product career and that you would like to recommend other product people?
- Harsha’s talk at Yoursstory:
- Bloomberg article on Ola Vs Uber War
- Books recommended: