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How to create an environment that cultivates and promotes traits of product engineers

YOW! CTO Summit 2019 Sydney

Many software products and apps are powerful, but they can also be complex. We have heard it many times from our customers, and sometimes we try to tell ourselves that our products and apps are complex because they are so powerful. But are richness of functionality and simplicity mutually exclusive?

To build world-class products of tomorrow, we need more engineers who think like end users. Engineers who have strong customer empathy. Engineers who have great instincts. Engineers who seek autonomy and fast decision making. There are a lot of types of great engineers. Some are motivated by solving gnarly technical problems, some are extremely interested in ensuring services are operating in most efficient, stable and performant way and some are all about shipping the value to customers and seeing customer’s problems being solved. Product engineers belong to the last group - they are those who are not afraid to make trade offs while balancing product value and engineering value. A great team will have a balance of different type of engineers.

In this talk, I will be talking about characteristics of product engineers, why should you, as a technology leader, want product engineers in your organisation, and how technology leaders can create environments and rules of play that cultivate and promote traits of product engineers.

Isabel Nyo

Development Manager



Isabel is an accomplished woman in technology with a passion for knowledge sharing and continuous learning. She has been sharing her thoughts via her written and spoken words. She was born and grown up in Burma (Myanmar) and now calls Sydney, Australia home. She currently works as an Engineering Manager at a technology company in Sydney.

A few years ago, she realised that women in technology are under-represented in the media and industry and she wanted to change that. She believes that change starts with herself and therefore, she started speaking at local meet ups, events and conferences with the hope to get recognition for women in technology and in leadership positions and to inspire others to do the same. She has also given talks internationally; she gave a talk on developing for a seamless user experience at a technical conference in Dublin, Ireland and most recently, she spoke about her personal leadership model at a leader program in Silicon Valley, USA.

Topics she speaks about include web development, leadership, career development, diversity and women in technology.

Isabel brings authenticity, warmth, humor and useful insights to her talks and she customises each talk for her particular audience, whether they are students, entrepreneurs, technical groups, people managers or executives.