Services & Specialties
I manage the intersection of design, business and development while keeping the customers in the middle.
I work with high growth startups to build and develop product teams that deliver on the vision of founders and early investors.
I speak marketing, customer service, sales, product, management and development with teams all over the world.
I help founders and product managers build the systems and processes that define and get their product to market.
18 Countries Visited
Location Independent Since 2016
4000 Cups Of Coffee (and counting)
Full Time Autodidact & Data Nerd
August 2017 – Present
Product Management Lead
I lead the product effort at DoubleDot Media for SaleHoo Supplier Directory & their Market Labs Product Research Tool.
February 2018 – July 2018
Director of Product
I lead the Product team for the SelfKey & KYC-Chain Ecosystem, and work as the Senior Product Manager for KYC-Chain. KYC-Chain is a B2B Compliance Platform that drives KYC Processes in Fintechs, Banks and Crypto Exchanges. SelfKey is a blockchain based identity wallet and marketplace which aims to give people control over their own identity.
January 2017 – June 2017
Chief Product Officer
AMZ Tracker Inc.
I built a new 3 person product team for all of AMZ Tracker’s suite of Amazon Seller Software when it was relocated to Shenzhen, China.
AMZ Tracker employs over 25+ people, across 5 continents and has thousands of clients across the world on 6 different software products.
My primary focus when building the product team was communication. – Across our diverse western and Chinese teams, but also between my product managers and our customers.
We were able to collectively stabilize the platform and start re-positioning our software to align with the changing market.
July 2016 – June 2017
Product Manager & Marketing Automation Specialist
Merchant Metrics & AMZ Tracker Inc.
I worked at AMZ Tracker as a Product Manager for Merchant Metrics, the Amazon FBA Financial Dashboard after it was acquired by our parent company.
Merchant Metrics expanded from 2 to 5 employees and grew to hundreds of customers.
I manage the scope and key relationships that make sure we are creating a product that our customers love, value for our company and are positioned to take advantage of opportunities in the market.
(I also design the marketing automation infrastructure that connects our awesome customers to AMZ Tracker’s suite of products)
January 2016 – July 2016
Product Manager & Onboarding Specialist
I was the key product strategist & product marketer at Amazooka, the All-In-One Amazon Analytics Platform.
Amazooka had 6 employees, across 3 continents and had hundreds of customers on three different software products.
I converted strategy into systems that work. At Amazooka that meant designing the systems that convert leads into customers and keep them on our platform.
(I also designed the onboarding and feedback cycle systems that keep us in touch with our customers and aligned with our market)
Digital Marketing Consultant
Interrobang Marketing & DS Consulting Services
Interrobang Marketing is a Boutique Consulting Firm.
We helped businesses entrepreneurs & small businesses create digital marketing platforms that nurtured prospective customers through the entire sales funnel.
Bachelor of Commerce
St. Mary’s University
Double Major: Finance and Management
Product Management Skills
Customer Interviews & Feedback
Founder / Merchant Metrics & Fat Cat Apps
Desirai has consistently shown initiative, drive and creativity when approaching problems. She helped create new processes and scale Merchant Metrics to accommodate the substantially larger and more diverse AMZ Tracker customer base.
Managing Director / SEO Conversion Content and RM Media & Marketing
While I admire and respect her deep commitment to expertise and specialization in product management and team management – I would gladly CREATE a new position simply to hire Desirai on my team.
I can say with confidence that Desirai was the single most versatile, effective and results-driven manager on our team. She created a clear roadmap for our products and integrated her executable plan seamlessly with the marketing, development and executive teams.
Product Manager /AMZ Tracker & Terrylin.lol
Even as our resources were spread thin, we were still able to work together and get new features shipped, bugs removed, and quality improvements in the product roadmap. She is reliable, capable, and highly responsive when it comes to team communications, and executes on a very high efficiency when it comes to getting things done.
Owner / R&R Wellness
Through Desirai’s desire to help me and the business succeed and by laying out a feasible plan, my plan of action was clear. Following the business plan, 2 months later my business is where I hoped it would be.
Let your mind become a lens, thanks to the converging rays of attention; let your soul be all the intent on whatever it is that is established in your mind as a dominant, wholly absorbing idea –Antonin-Dalmace Sertillanges
Let your mind become a lens, thanks to the converging rays of attention; let your soul be all the intent on whatever it is that is established in your mind as a dominant, wholly absorbing idea –Antonin-Dalmace Sertillanges
- Quebec Tradition and Modernity
- A Short History of Canada
- Predictably Irrational – Dan Ariely
- Draw to Win by Dan Roam
- The One Thing by Garry Keller & Jay Papasan
- Secret Lives of Great Artists by Elizabeth Lunday
- The Daily Stoic by Ryan Holiday
- Hooked by Nir Eyal
- Cows, Pigs, Wars and Witches by Marvin Harris
- Essential Scrum
- The Bonjour Effect
A Short History of Canada by Desmond Morton (5/5)
Excellent summarization of Canada, he made it both interesting and balanced. In a country as young and diverse as Canada that is hard thing to accomplish.
A Short History of Progress by Ronald Wright (4/5)
An honest look at progress, the definition of which I had taken for granted. Wright uses real world historical examples to outline the results of unfettered progress – which is essentially the world today. Excellent read – Recommend.
My Brief History by Stephen Hawking (3.5/5)
- Light-hearted and fun, this was an easy weekend read into a character I continue to uncover. Honest.
A Geography of Blood: Unearthing Memory from a Prairie Landscape by Candace Savage (4/5)
- Part memoir/part history of the Cyprus Hills region straddling the Alberta/Saskatchewan border. I had mixed feelings throughout this read. Really appreciate how Savage captured the native history of the area though. It gave me a better insight into the oft praised “peaceful victory” of the RCMP in the Sitting Bull situation – which was really just starving him out.
On Hitler’s Mountain: Overcoming the Legacy of a Nazi Childhood by Irmgard A. Hunt (4/5)
- Really easy reading book that breaks the fold behind one middle class families relationship with Nazi rule during WWII. It casts light on how easy it is to be human and the importance of dignity.
Your Productized Consulting Guide by Jane Portman (4/5)
- I was initially put off by the size of this manual, but it is probably the most actionable read so far this year. I could feel a plan of action catalyze as I read through the guide. Spot on.
CryptoAssets: The Innovative Investor’s Guide to Bitcoin & Beyond by Chris Burniske & Jack Tatar(4.5/5)
- Probably the best book I have read on the subject. I didn’t approach this as an investor, but from a product perspective. It covers the history of key projects in a way that is both interesting and provides a larger context in which to view crypto and the market/mindset of those that are investing.
The Internet of Money: A collection of talks by Andreas M. Antonopoulos (2.5/5)
- This book was a good primer on Blockchain and uncovered some of the most common misconceptions. However, as is the nature of books on “talks” it did get repetitive and the form was tiring and extraneous by the end of the book.
Inspired: How to create tech products customers love by Marty Cagan (4.5/5)
- Excellent book on how to be practical when thinking and building lean in tech organizations. Really provided some excellent tools and insights into how product teams are built and should be organized.
The Promise of Canada: 150 Years–People and Ideas That Have Shaped Our Country by Charlotte Gray (5/5)
- This is by far the BEST book I have ever read on Canadian Culture. Sometimes it takes an outsider to really question and understand what is going on, something I think is very typically Canadian.
The Four: The hidden DNA of Amazon, Apple, Google and Facebook by Scott Galloway (4.5/5)
- Excellent book that really takes a look at the giants of this decade and unpacks how consumers look at them – really sobering. Not that I agree with all Scott says, but refreshing perspective that has made me look more critically at the tech giants and how they are shaping our present.
Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World by Cal Newport (4/5)
- I’ve seen a measurable change in my habits since I started reading this book. I’ve read this book slowly over the last few months as I slowly adopted more and more deep work principles. Very very valuable.
Originals – How Non-Conformists Rule the World by Adam Grant (4/5)
- Excellent book. Really good balance of research and practical application that anyone can turn into actionable implementation in their day to day.
- This was a really good overview on NPS scores and how they could be used in different contexts. It wasn’t as practical as I would liked but can be applied to smaller enterprises.
Don’t Make Me Think: A Common Sense Approach to Web Usability – Steve Krug (5/5)
- Funny, Engaging & On-Point. Highly recommend as an easy entry to basic UX research for the layman.
Badass: Making Users Awesome – Kathy Sierra (3.5/5)
- I really love Kathy Sierra, she is a very brilliant and funny woman. The book was ok, but she has one or two different talks available online for free (and that are EXCELLENT) that cover the majority of the content of the book.
Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World that Can’t Stop Talking – Susan Cain (5/5)
- Although I first heard of Susan Cain years ago, I finally took the time to read her book. It gave me not only insight into my own introvert tendencies – but also into Chinese Culture that I am experiencing every day.
Average is Over: Powering Canada beyond the Age of the Great Stagnation – Tyler Cohen (4/5)
- This book helped cultivate a series of ideas I’ve been mulling over into a cause-effect relationship complete with many chess references. Great book – could have done with a little less chess
Strategize: Product Strategy & Product Roadmap Practices for the Digital Age by Roman Pichler (4.5/5)
- This has been an AMAZING read for helping me frame my products inside the competitive landscape. It retested many of my assumptions and helped create new mind space for old problems. Definitely recommend reading.
Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl (4/5)
- Excellent read. I usually stay away from these kinds of books as they tend to be heavy and leave me feeling despondent. But Frankl’s book is a classic and addresses that very point. Poignant treatise on meaning and where you should go looking for it.
The Map Thief by Michael Blanding (2.5/5)
- I wouldn’t call the story gripping (although the subtitle does), it was an interesting read. I feel little sympathy and much disdain for those that pilfer public works for personal gain and essentially steal history from the rest of us. I am finding out that I need to be much pickier with my biographies, whereas this was interesting – it wasn’t worth the read.
Ego is the Enemy by Ryan Holiday (4.5/5)
- Another amazing read. This book helped me to cut through the surface woes of my life and helped me find calm and focus without sacrificing relationships or people.
Operation Brewery: Black Hops – The Least Covert Operation in Brewing by Dan Norris, Eddie Oldfield & Michael McGovern (3.75/5)
- Black Hops is a craft brewery on the Gold Coast of Australia. Starting a brewery in on my bucketlist – these guys shared their entire story from guerrilla brewing to opening day. As very digital marketing savvy guys, they were able to drum up a lot of support and crowdfunded part of their start-up costs.
Practitioner’s Guide to Product Management by Jock Busuttil (4/5)
- This was a great read. He doesn’t get too bogged down in the tactics, but provides an excellent overview of Product Management, it’s struggles and it’s joys. He uses some storytelling, but throws in some helpful constructs that attune a Product Owner’s thinking.
- This was an entertaining and powerful read. Mark has a way of cutting to the core of something. The simple mantra’s that he shared in the book have a way of immediately releasing tension and providing perspective.
Good Morning Mr. Mandela: A Memoir by Zelda la Grange (3.5/5)
- A new initiative that I am taking on is to read biographies of important figures in the countries that I am visiting. This was the first – it gave me a real insight into how Afrikaner’s think and how the face of South Africa has changed over the last twenty years. Zelda isn’t a writer (and it shows) but her story helped me understand the country.
Princess, More Tears to Cry by Jean Sasson (1/5)
- I picked this up staying at an Airbnb in South Africa. Although it was definitely interesting to see a new perspective. I didn’t connect to the Princess – her life seems more of a caricature and the narrative falls flat.
My Life on the Road by Gloria Steinem (5/5)
- This was an excellent read & well written- it cast a new light on women’s struggles over the last 50 years and the type of community organizing and listening that changed the rights of women in the western world.
— I took a little break here and re-read ALOT of fiction over the summer —
Winter of the World by Ken Follett (4/5)
- Another masterful b0ok by Ken Follet. Although brutal and disturbing at times. Many of the scenes shook me to the core, but I still listened to it all the way through. Audio books have replaced TV and Netflix and my eyes are thanking me for it.
Fall of Giants by Ken Follett (4/5)
- I have stumbled across Ken Follett before and I appreciate his ability to craft vast and intricate worlds. I did enjoy this but thankfully listened to the audio book instead of reading it. It seems to be a book you could read while an entire day floats by.
Ask by Ryan Levesque (3.75/5)
- Ryan had some excellent insights for getting feedback from customers. His work is geared towards information products (and physical products) and although some of the insights work for me, it is not 100% my style.
22 Immutable Laws of Marketing by Al Reis (4.5/5)
- Amazing Book. The examples are a little old but the book re-frames your thinking on marketing and branding. Well worth the read, although I am going to check out the 22 Immutable Laws of Branding and 11 laws of internet to see if I can frame my business into the structure a little better.
Customer Engagement by Intercom.io (3/5)
- I’ve been focused on reducing churn in Saas Businesses. This was a kindle book from Intercom.io. It touted a lot of its product, but also had some excellent framework for messaging and it was a QUICK read that I could implement immediately.
— I took a couple months off of reading. I needed space to focus on doing things not thinking things. —
The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho (5/5)
- This was a beautiful, short read that kick started my Thailand adventure. It is great to get your head in the right space for adventure. Another book I would recommend having a hard copy of, books like these are meant to be read and shared.
— Another slow month for reading, but super quick for life. —
Allen Carr’s Easy Way To Stop Smoking by Allen Carr (5/5)
- The first time I read this book, I quit. It wore off. I re-read it and am experiencing some success. HIGHLY RECOMMEND.
— Super busy! Didn’t finish any books but read a bit out of everything.—
Tiny Beautiful Things by Cheryl Strayed (3.5/5)
- This was a good book to pick up and flip through intermittently, but I would never recommend reading from cover to cover. It does get a little repetitive, but the advice is pretty on par.
The Crossroads of Should and Must by Elle Luna (5/5)
- This was a beautifully illustrated book with an excellent method for putting life and pursuits into perspective. Definitely recommend picking up a copy of the book (Don’t buy on kindle)
The Ten Commandments of Business Failure by Donald R. Keough (1/5)
- This book was horrible. Admittedly, I was the wrong audience. It is made for middle management in big corporate giants – ignore.
Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores The Secret Side of Everything by Steven Levitt & Stephen Dubner (5/5)
- Real Estate Agents and the Ku Klux Klan? Need I say more. Read it.
Limitless Travel by Matthew Bailey (3/5)
- Matt promoted this through his blog at livelimitless.net. I was able to glean some good little tips here and there, but these books are more like a “kick in the butt” and “keep the eyes on the prize”, digital nomad go go go kind of book for me.
Who Moved My Cheese? by Spencer Johnson (4/5)
- I love little books with succinct messages. This little book is all about dealing with change. It helped me push through some of my anxiety that has been creeping up in the last few weeks, lean into discomfort and make some hard decisions.
The Wise Man’s Fear by Patrick Rothfuss (5/5)
- Fantasy binge bleeds into October. Will probably pick up the same books in 6 months time… again.
The Name of The Wind by Patrick Rothfuss (5/5)
- I love high fantasy novels. Patrick Rothfuss Kingkiller Chronicles were exactly the kind of escapism that I needed in the spare moments between mad projects and deadlines this month.
Scientific Advertising by Claude Hopkins (4/5)
- I’ve been exploring more and more copy writing lately, in part because of Derek Johanson’s Copyhour.com. This helped me understand the bottom line, instead of wandering off into marketing dream land.
Live Your Truth by Kamal Ravikan (3.75/5)
- Good book. I like keeping a pick-me-up book in my back pocket. Kamal offers simple sage advice in a easy to digest and implement format.
Big Travel, Small Budget by Ryan Shauers (3/5)
- This was a good book. I got some great long-term travel ideas from its pages and it helped keep my mind aligned with my current travel goals. But it is more tailored for Americans, and I am not much of an “overlander” but he makes some compelling arguments for picking it up.
The Way To Love by Anthony De Mello (5/5)
- This book was AMAZING. It acted as a catalyst for awareness, gratitude and self-awareness. This is my Sunday read, I still go back to it when I am having trouble letting go of beliefs, attachments and fears that are pulling me off track.
Vagabonding: An Uncommon Guide to the Art of Long-Term World Travel by Rolf Potts (5/5)
- This was on my read list for a long time, I picked it up while on an extra long layover in the Edmonton Airport. It helped me reorganize my life around a big goal I want to pursue – TRAVEL. If you are planning to do any long-term travel. Buy. This. Book.
Shady Characters: The Secret Life of Punctuation, Symbols & Other Typographical Marks by Kieth Houston (3.5/5)
- This was one of those interesting and factual books that I leaned on when I needed mental mindspace. It was great but started to drag after a while.
Fight Club by Chuck Palahniuk (4/5)
- I was late to this party, but I needed an easy read to defrag the mind and it filled the space nicely.
Love Yourself Like Your Life Depends on It by Kamal Ravikant (5/5)
- I am a huge fan of short and to the point books with clear instructions to make big changes. I have adopted the few little hacks in this book for some of the BIGGEST gains, best experiences of the last year
The First 20 Hours: Learn How To Do Anything… FAST by Josh Kaufman (4/5)
- Quit Complicating Things. Quit trying to be an expert. Kaufman lays out a clear directive for achieving competency in anything inside of a month. Great read. Honest Narrative.
Do The Work! by Stephen Pressfield (5/5)
- It made me laugh. Hit a nerve. If you are having trouble struggling through a project and need a quick pick-me-up on inspiration and getting to the next step – Steven clearly outlines the creative process and “RESISTANCE” – You are not alone!
The End of Jobs by Taylor Pearson (3/5)
- “Blog Book” category. Great ideas – easy to read and glean inspiration for the aspiring entrepreneur. Insight into the hidden risks of jobs and the consistently lower entry cost for entrepreneurs.
4 Hour Body by Tim Ferris (4/5)
- Great Read – long book. I haven’t read cover to cover, but am taking it off in chunks like he recommends. Motivated myself to get a kettlebell and start swinging.
Moonwalking with Einstein by Joshua Foer (5/5)
- Easy and Entertaining Read. I can relate to short passionate bursts of obsession – I have never take it so far though. Enjoyed the insights into experts and understanding memory. Was able to pick up some clever memory hacks.
5 Love Languages by Gary Chapman (5/5)
- Massive Insight into Communications Styles and the Importance of using the right language with a loved one.
Choose Yourself by James Altucher (3/5)
- I love James Altucher. Great Message. Highly entertaining. But the “blog turn book” style makes it difficult to pull out a congruent message that is easily understood and repeated. Best for light reading with a funny and positive spin.
Just Your Type by Paul D. Tieger & Barbara Barron-Tieger (3/5)
- Went down this path trying to find how different personality types interact inside of relatioships. It gave me a deeper understanding of the car model I first saw on personality hacker. But fell short for me when they matched types.
Lost in the book case: (Started reading but never finished)
- Madam President: The Secret Presidency of Mrs. Woodrow Wilson
- The 22 Immutable Laws of Branding
- PPC Strategies for Amazon Sellers
- Steal The Show – Michael Port
- Heaven & Hell – Thes Psycology of Emotions – Dr. Neel Burton
- The Art if Failure – Dr. Neel Burton
- Free Will Sam Harris
- Complex PTSD -: From Surviving to Thriving – Pete Walker
- The War of Art – Steven Pressfield
- Non-Obvious Rohit Bhargaba
- Trust Me, I’m Lying – Ryan Holiday
- Mastery – Robert Greene
- The Lean Product Playbook – Dan Olsen
- Hidden Figures – Margot Lee Shetterly
- The Ad Week Copywriting Handbook – Sugarman
Drop Me A Line